Boxcar Willie (born with the name Lecil Travis Martin) is an American country music singer. He was born in September 1, 1931 in Sterrett, Texas. He sung in the "old-time hobo" music style, complete with dirty face, overalls, and a floppy hat. "Boxcar Willie" was formerly a character in a ballad he wrote, However he used it as his own stage name.
In 1949, Martin joined the United States Air Force and assigned as a pilot and flight engineer for the B-29 Super Fortress during the Korean War in the early 1950s.
Martin met his future wife, Lloene, in Boise, Idaho in 1962,. They have four children.
He attended a talent show in San Jose, California and performed under the nickname as "Boxcar Willie" for the first time. He won first place, a $150 prize. It was his part-time vocation, but; he is still in the Air Force and have been flying daily missions. He become a Flight Engineer on KC-97L aircraft in the 136th ARW in the Texas Air National Guard, which include air refueling flights around the USA and overseas in Germany.
Martin left the Air Force in 1976,and became a full-time performer. In 1981, he achieved a professional landmark by being initiated into the Grand Ole Opry as its 60th member.
In 1996, He is diagnosed with leukemia and died on April 12, 1999 in Branson at the age 67.