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John "Bernie" Martin was a personal assistant to Martin Scorsese, who dedicated his latest movie, "The Irishman," to him.
John "Bernie" Martin was a personal assistant to Martin Scorsese, who dedicated his latest movie, "The Irishman," to him. (HANDOUT)

Director Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman” has an all-star cast, is earning accolades aplenty and will very likely be a contender for multiple Oscars when nominations are announced next month. But it’s dedicated to just one person: a former marine from Towson who became a driver for some of New York’s biggest celebrities, including Scorsese.

John “Bernie” Martin "became a part of our lives, someone we confided in, someone we cared about deeply and who cared about us, someone we truly loved,” the director wrote in an email when Martin died in October 2018. “His loyalty meant the world to me — whenever we needed him, no matter what, he was there.”

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Martin, who was 61 when he died at his Manhattan home of a suspected blood clot, seems to have had no shortage of friends in the entertainment industry.

He was a driver for Sarah Michelle Gellar of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” fame, who posted on Facebook, “I lost a friend so close to me, I considered him family.” He served as a personal assistant to actor Gene Hackman while he was in Baltimore filming “The Replacements.” According to various accounts, he drove or worked as a personal assistant for Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Cameron Diaz and others. And for five years, he was Scorsese’s personal assistant.

He even got to appear in several of Scorsese’s films and TV shows, including “The Wolf of Wall Street” and “Boardwalk Empire” and a short called “The Audition.” True, he was typecast ― as a driver ― but Bernie Martin clearly left his mark on the creative community. According to Scorsese, he even cast him in “The Irishman.”

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