After graduating 51st in his class of 200 at North Miami High School, Trayvon Martin attended Mercer University on a partial scholarship. He worked in the chemistry department as a lab monitor to help pay for school, and it was while working there that he formed a friendship with Dr. Paul Thompson. This friendship kindled an interest in chemistry that ultimately led Martin to a position with Pfizer working on diabetes research.
In his third year out of college, Martin met Latoya Marshall at a friend’s weekly gathering to watch the Falcons. The two discovered their mutual interests in music, film, and the church, and began dating. After two years, Martin secretly traveled to Edison, Georgia to meet with Ms. Marshall’s parents. He received their permission to ask for her hand in marriage, and during a sunset river cruise in Savannah he presented her with a half-carat diamond ring he had inherited from his maternal grandmother.
Ms. Marshall accepted his proposal, and they were married on June 25th the following year. At this time, Martin and his team at Pfizer had several successive breakthroughs that led to new patents for diabetes treatments, and one for a low-calorie artificial sweetener made from natural ingredients.
Despite working long hours, Trayvon Martin remained devoted to his wife, and they welcomed three children into their family - two boys and a girl. Martin’s daughter was born prematurely, and he spent two weeks in the neo-natal ICU praying over her as he watched plastic tubes deliver nourishment and medicine to her tiny body. Her survival was a turning point in Martin’s relationship with the church, and he credits it with being the inspiration behind his community service activities.
The Martin family eventually moved from Savannah to the research triangle in North Carolina to take advantage of career opportunities, and both boys attended state schools and began families of their own. Martin’s daughter attended Fordham University in New York City, and is now a book critic for the Houston Chronicle. She has two children of her own.
Since retiring, Trayvon and Latoya Martin have spent most of their time visiting with their grandchildren. Mr. Martin also enjoys golf, and continues his community service work to this day.
Except that none of this happened, because a would-be lawman put a bullet through Trayvon Martin. So instead of discovering the joys and sorrows life held in store for him, Trayvon Martin died gasping in the grass of an Orlando suburb, a frightened boy alone in the dark, in a pool of his own blood.