Marty Boyers, ¡Presente!

I’m sad to share the news that Marty Boyers, a friend and long-time fighter for the interests of the working class, passed away unexpectedly in November.

Marty joined the socialist movement while a high school student, as I did, in 1970. For his entire life he remained true to the ideas that initially inspired him. He was an early reader and supporter of World-Outlook, contributing to our coverage and making a regular monthly donation. He participated in and sent us reports and photos of local demonstrations in Pittsburgh on issues that included defense of women’s right to choose abortion.

Marty Boyers, Pittsburgh, September 27, 2008. (Photo: Posted on Marty’s Facebook page)

His brother Gary, who also joined the movement as a young person, sent these thoughts about Marty and asked me to share them.

“Martin Boyers died in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in late November following a brief illness. Marty joined the Young Socialist Alliance as a 14-year-old, just a couple of months before the U.S. invasion of Cambodia and the murder of antiwar demonstrators at Kent State and Jackson State. These events precipitated the biggest student protests in U.S. history. For more than 30 years, he dedicated his life to building the communist movement, taking assignments in Cleveland, Dallas, Birmingham, New York, Greensboro, and Boston.

“While in New York, he volunteered in the Socialist Workers Party printshop. In 1982, Marty was the party’s candidate for governor of Alabama, running against George Wallace. At his death, Marty was 67 years old.

“By bourgeois standards, Marty was a failure. He was a college dropout. He never owned a new car, let alone a house. He never held a job for more than five years. In his retirement, he supplemented his Social Security and a tiny pension with a part-time job at Walmart.

“Marty was an autodidact, constantly reading several books at once. It took the pandemic to stop his biweekly visits to the library. Whether it was by reading the New York Times or by scouring activist websites in the Pittsburgh area, Marty wanted to deepen his education and look for opportunities to join protests and meet young people and others who could be won to working-class politics.

“He touched many, both with his patient explanations of politics and history, and his kindness and generosity.”

By Gary Boyers

By the standards that truly matter, Marty’s life was a success because he devoted it to fighting with others for a better world.

Marty Boyers, ¡Presente!

Geoff Mirelowitz
for the editors of World-Outlook

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Categories: Obituaries

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