Martin M. Middleton, son of Drue and Maggie Middleton, was a lifelong resident of Shelby County. He married Shirley Faye Booth in July 1941, five months before the war started in December of that year. Soon after serving his country in the United States Air Force, Martin returned to Center, where he operated a successful grocery business serving residents of the area. He was instrumental in helping to develop the poultry industry in Shelby County. After the houses were built and the chickens were mature, there was no market. Martin led the way in assisting growers with marketing and transportation of the grown chickens to processors outside the region. He later developed a state of the art feed mill, the first of its kind in Texas, to deliver bulk feed to growers. Martin also served as Mayor of Center. Martin was an outdoorsman who loved to hunt and fish. He was a member of First Baptist Church and was a dedicated husband and father of three children. Beyond his accolades and accomplishments, Martin Middleton was, first and foremost, a philanthropist with a heart for helping others.