Martha Gavagan, 91,
passed away quietly at home on June 21st. Born in East Chicago, she moved to
Porter at 18 months of age with her parents, Martha and Ray Eschenbach, who
started Mineral Springs Restaurant on Highway 12, just east of Mineral
Springs Road. As a child, Martha loved to dance and she later became the
prima ballerina in the Gary Dance Company for a season. After graduating
from Chesterton High School in 1940, Martha went on a road trip with her
mother and sister Dorothy, to visit her grandmother and aunt living in
Riverside, California. During WWII, Martha worked for AT & T, in addition to
her parents restaurant. In 1946, Martha quit working to become caregiver for
her terminally ill mother.
On June 6, 1948,
Martha married the love of her life, Owen Gavagan, also a Chesterton native.
Owen, a WWII veteran, would alway say that he traveled 3 old countries and
47 states before finding a rose in his own backyard. When Martha’s children
were young, she obtained a Real Estate license, working part time for Dick
Caufman and subsequently, Ellen Kleckner. In the late 1960’s, when Owen
became ill, Martha began working full time in real
estate, obtaining her broker’s license, and later her CRS and GRI
certificates, while working at Harley Snyder Company and later, Coldwell
Banker. Martha loved selling homes in the Chesterton area, but she still
managed to squeeze in bridge games, another passion. Martha and Owen raised
four children together in the 28 years they were married until Owen’s death
Martha retired from
real estate in 1995.
will be held on Thursday, June 26, 2014 at 12 p.m. at White-Love Funeral
Home, 525 S. 2nd St., Chesterton with Chaplin Craig Forewalter officiating.
Burial will follow at Chesterton Cemetery.
The family will
receive friends from 10 a.m. until time of service at the funeral home.
To send an online
condolence, please visit