Otto Barnhart Martinson, Jr., age 89 years, passed away on September 1, 2021.  He was a resident of Colorado Springs, CO, for nine years and was formerly a resident of Virginia Beach, Virginia.  He was a retired professor of Accounting from Old Dominion University, VA.

Otto was born on December 14, 1931, to Alice (Nelson) and Otto B. Martinson, Sr. in Seaford, VA. On February 20, 1954, Otto married Vera Lou Dowler in Washington DC. He and Vera Lou had two daughters named Linda Luanne and Debra Dianne. Otto was a loving and supportive husband, who provided tremendous support and care for Vera Lou as she passed away in March 1983. In 1986, Otto married Brigita (Zigurs) Skinner in Colorado Springs, CO on August 23rd.

Otto Martinson was always up for an adventure. He had a way of making every moment more fun! He also loved attending and watching sports with his family. He stressed the importance of positive thinking, and his motto was to “Aim for the stars!” He never turned down a cup of coffee or a bowl of ice cream, and he savored smoking a cigar on his deck. He was a member of Woodmen Valley Chapel, Colorado Springs, CO. He served in the United States Air Force and retired as a Lt Colonel. While in the Air Force, Otto was on the faculty of the USAFA and founded the Department of Management; he also served the Joint Chiefs of Staff and received his PhD in Managerial Economics from George Washington University. For his development of PieCost, a strategic aircraft purchasing system, Otto received the Legion of Merit. After his retirement from the Air Force, Otto Martinson worked at Logistics Management Institute and at Carlson Companies where he was a VP of Strategic Planning and Development, and where he also served as CEO of Country Kitchen. Otto Martinson was a distinguished professor at Old Dominion University for over 20 years. He received Professor Emeritus honors and also was named Outstanding Accounting Educator in 2002 among other awards.

He is survived by his loving wife, Brigita; his devoted daughters: Linda (Luis Sagastume) and Debra (Jon Bohlman); his brother: Robert William Martinson (Rita); his adoring grandchildren: Laura (Travis Petersen), Luke (Beth Lemon), Jeff (Julie Bohlman), Julie (Bohlman) and Jenna (Bohlman), Marcel (Jodi) Sagastume, Ryan Sagastume, and Marcus (Andrea) Sagastume; his great-grandchildren: Jake (Bohlman), Landon (Lemon), Ella (Lemon), Benjamin (Bohlman), and Leo (Bohlman), extended family members including nieces and nephew, and Brigita’s son Matthew (Jenn) Skinner. He was preceded in death by Vera Lou Martinson, Otto B. Martinson, Sr., Alice Martinson, Allen (Betty) Martinson, and Brigita’s daughter Kassi (Skinner) Nease.

A private memorial service with full military honors will be held at Evergreen Cemetery, Colorado Springs, CO. 

Memorials in Otto Martinson’s name may be made to the Colorado Springs Fire Department, Stations 12 and 18, 375 Printers Parkway, Colorado Springs, CO 80910.

Personal Caption: Wonderful Dad and Granddad, Loving Husband

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  1. The Buckley SFB military Retiree Activities Office (RAO) would like to offer our sincere condolences and our gratitude for Lt Col Martinson’s service to our country in the Air Force. If you would like help with any matters related to casualty assistance, Defense Finance & Accounting Service, Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP), Veterans Affairs (VA), etc. you can contact our office on Buckley SFB at 720-847-6693. The RAO is staffed by volunteers, all military retirees themselves, and our sole purpose is to provide assistance to any military retirees and surviving spouses/family members with anything related to their military service and/or benefits, in particular during difficult times such as this. We are deeply sorry for your loss.

    Steve Young
    Lt Col, USAF, Ret
    Director, Buckley SFB RAO

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