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Ex-Winthrop trustee among 2 dead in suspected murder-suicide

mary-jean-martinA Rock Hill couple were found dead Monday by a caregiver in their home off Herlong Avenue.

James Martin, 91, and Mary Jean Martin, 81 died in an apparent murder-suicide at their home on Huntcliff Drive, York County Coroner Sabrina Gast said.

Investigators believe James shot his wife before firing the gun on himself. The two were both believed to have been in failing health.

Mary Jean Martin served on Winthrop University’s Board of Trustees from 1994 to 2006, serving as chairwoman of the board during her tenure.

Longtime friend and Winthrop employee Debbie Garrick said she looked up to Martin as a role model.

“She was very visible and very interested in what was going on at Winthrop. She loved her Alma Mater,” Garrick said.

Martin was a longtime teacher and principal in York schools before retiring at her home in Rock Hill.

An autopsy was scheduled for Tuesday and results are still pending.

Greg Suskin of WSOC-TV contributed to this report.

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