Obituaries detail

Martha Macell Field

March 21, 1927 - August 1, 2022


Martha Macell Field, 95, of Leawood, Kansas, passed away peacefully at home on Monday, August 1, 2022.  A memorial service will be held at Village Presbyterian Church on Monday, August 15, 2022 at 1:30 p.m.  In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the Village Church Foundation, the Kansas City Symphony, or Kansas City Hospice.


Martha was born on March 21, 1927 in Grand Rapids, Michigan to Floyd and Ella McNaughton.  She grew up there with her brother, Paul McNaughton (deceased).  The childhood deaths caused by scarlet fever of two younger sisters devastated her, but also significantly contributed to the resilience, persistence, and grace that were hallmarks of her personality.  Despite health issues, including a ruptured appendix (before the widespread use of antibiotics) and a mastoidectomy which resulted in significant hearing loss in her left ear, she graduated from high school at age 16 and headed to Purdue University where she graduated cum laude at the age of 20 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Textile Chemistry. She spent the following year in New York City studying at the Tobe-Coburn School for Fashion Careers and enjoying the many cultural opportunities the city afforded.


Her early career was spent in the fashion industry working as a buyer and trainer for department stores and textile companies in various locations, including Cleveland, OH, Rochester, NY, NYC, and Minneapolis.  When she and her husband, Marvin, moved to Terre Haute, IN, she commuted to Purdue to complete her master’s degree while simultaneously teaching textile and home economics courses at Indiana State Teachers College (now university).


In 1962, Martha and Marvin settled in the Kansas City area and soon had three daughters.  Martha returned to work in the mid-1970s at Knit-Rite, a manufacturer of interfaces for prosthetic and orthotic patients, where she applied her expertise in textiles as the Director of Research and Development to a rapidly evolving industry.  During her time with the company, which spanned 30 years, Martha developed and streamlined production of new products that were better fitting, easier to care for, and more comfortable, and in doing so, improved the quality of life for the people who used them. She also gave presentations at numerous conventions and wrote papers for various journals about her research. Her work was recognized by her alma mater when she was named Purdue’s Family and Consumer Science Outstanding Alumnus in 1998.


In addition to her fulfilling career and professional accomplishments, Martha was deeply committed to her church and to the Kansas City Symphony, and was a long-time, active member of the Greater Kansas City Association of Family and Consumer Sciences.  She was a self-described “news junkie” and maintained a life-long interest in politics and current affairs. But Martha’s first priority was her family.  She was invariably home from work in time to prepare and partake in the family dinner ritual.  She was a devoted caregiver to her father, aunt, and husband in the last years of their lives. And beyond being involved in and supporting the many activities of her daughters and grandchildren, she was their most important role model, trusted counselor, and greatest cheerleader.  Above all, she never missed an opportunity to let them know how much she loved them. For those qualities, she was also a cherished friend and mentor to many who knew her.


Martha was predeceased by her husband of 57 years, Marvin F. Field.  She is survived by daughters Katie Olivant (David) of Santa Fe, NM, Jennifer Rymarcsuk (Jim) of Bethesda, Maryland, and Donna Martin (Todd) of Leawood, KS. Also surviving her are four grandchildren: Clara Martin, Jacob Martin, Emma Rymarcsuk, and Ian Olivant.

Additional Service:
Memorial Service
Village Presbyterian Church
6641 Mission Rd.
Prairie Village
Zip Code:
Date of Service:
Aug 15 ,2022
Time of Service:
1:30 pm
Additional Information:
No Additional Information Added
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