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Bennie Jean Martin Stark

Bennie Jean Martin Stark

December 23, 1937 – December 4th, 2021

Bennie M. Stark, 83, of Merryville, Louisiana passed on to be with her Lord and Savior Jesus on December 4th, 2021 at her residence.

Bennie was born in Port Arthur, Texas to parents Floyd and Nita Lee Martin being the oldest of eight children. She moved to Merryville the summer of 1954 and graduated from Merryville High school in 1956. While at Merryville she met her soul mate Andy L. Stark and they married out of high school on July 6th, 1956, having been married 57 ½ years. She attended Southwest La. University and Northwestern State University and graduated from McNeese State University with a B.S. Degree in Secondary Science and Physical Education. She taught McNeese Biology Labs while working on her Master’s Degree and obtained additional Advanced Science Study hours through Northwestern State University and the PIPS Program.

She started teaching at Merryville High School on a granted assistantship for junior high math in the spring of 1965 and followed with 30 years of teaching High School Science, while also, coaching Girls Basketball and track for 21 years. She served 2 years on the All-Star selection committee for girls basketball, 2 years as West coordinator for girls All-Star team, and served on the MVP Committee for Miss Basketball. She served 3 years on evaluating public schools in science for State Accreditation, helped develop the remedial program for biology and served on Louisiana State Selection Committees for adoption of High School Science Textbooks for several years. While she taught she was a member of the National Science Teachers Association and Louisiana Educators Association. She was a member of the Merryville Book Club for eight years. She initiated the Merryville Science Club which sponsored the school wide science fairs for student projects and the Science Club Carnivals and plays; was a cheerleader and pep squad sponsor and began the Crusaders for Christ for High School Students.  She came out of retirement to teach Science for about one year at Evans High School where her son, Floyd, also taught.

She was affiliated with the Merryville First Baptist church as an avid Sunday School Teacher and VBS Teacher/Leader teaching various age groups along the seasons of her walk with Christ. She was sure to let you know “Christian First.” As teaching had been her life, one of her recent comments reminds us “but everyone teaches in some kind of way- we teach our children manners, honesty, kindness, how to work, how to cook, clean, drive, fix things, and so on. They learn just by imitating us, but remember these words from God’s Word: Proverbs 22:6 says to ‘Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.’”

She is survived by her children, Pard Stark and Eva of Merryville, LA, Arrie Stark and Marilyn of Merryville, LA, Tod Stark and Becky of Brookeland, TX, Misty Barlow and Dalton of Merryville, LA, Mikki Mahfouz and George of DeRidder, LA, Floyd Stark and Sabrina of Merryville, LA, and Mandi Cournoyer and Mike of Merryville, LA; siblings, Charles “Buddy” Martin and Mary of Merryville, LA, Floy Ann Moreau of Lafayette, La, James “Jimmy” Martin and Wathena of Lumberton, TX, Sydney Fuselier and Mike of Sulphur, LA, Madalon Merchant and James of Anacoco, LA, Juanita Simmons and Harvey of Montgomery, TX, and Mark Martin and Lisa, of Bon Wier, TX; 28 grandchildren, 39 great grandchildren, 1 great great grandchild, and a host of nephews, nieces, cousins, family and friends.

She is preceded in death by her husband, Andy Stark; parents, Floyd and Nita Lee Martin; brother-in-Law, Ronald J. Moreau; nephew, Eric Knippers; and great grandchild, Addi Standley.

Visitation will be held on Tuesday, December 7th 2021 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at First Baptist Church in Merryville, LA., and will resume at 1 p.m. Wednesday, December 8th 2021 until time of service at 2 p.m. at the church. Burial will follow at the Andy and Bennie Stark Family Cemetery on Pullem Branch Road in Merryville. Pastor Wayne Squyres and Pastor Jason Fortenberry will officiate.

Honoring Bennie as pallbearers will be her grandsons: Ryan Stark, Anderson Ingle, Brett Standley, Mace Stark, Coy Ingle, Tanner Stark, Levi Stark, and Ross Cournoyer; and honorary pallbearer Brent Hudson.

We would like to thank all prayers and support from family and friends during the past year of her illness.

Bennie Jean Martin Stark
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