Mathew A. “Mat” Erickson Sr., age 89, of Strasburg, and a former resident of Barberton, went to be with the Lord on Thursday, January 19, 2017, in his home, surrounded by his loving family.
Born September 3, 1927, in Muskegon, Michigan, he was a son of the late Robert and Barbara Engle Erickson Sr. Mat moved with his family at a young age to the Columbus area and attended school in Dublin. He went on to serve honorably with the United States Army at the end of the Second World War. Shortly after his military discharge, he worked as a floor man at Summit Beach Park Skating Rink where he met his future wife, the former Delores Brady, picking her up off the floor when she had fallen. He and Delores were married on September 18, 1947. They enjoyed many years of dancing the flea hop, the waltz, the 14-step and many other popular dances on and off skates. When the Summit Beach would close for the night, Mat enjoyed playing hockey at the skating rink.
Mat was employed by Babcock & Wilcox in Barberton from which he retired after forty-two years of service. He served as president of the Barberton P.T.A. Council, as well as president of the Washington Elementary School P.T.A. During his time as council president, he was instrumental in starting a dental clinic for needy children. Mat ran for Barberton City Council and lost the election by one vote. Mat also served as financial secretary for Boilermakers Local 900, Barberton.
He was Commander of the Royal Rangers of the Word of Faith Christian Church, Parral, and was very proud of his work with that organization and the influence it had on the lives of its young members. Mat was presently a member of LifeWay Church in New Philadelphia. He enjoyed bowling and was in a senior league, and he also liked to waterski in his younger days. Mat was a sought-after handyman in the community. He was a devoted family man, and he loved the Lord. Mat and Delores enjoyed their time at the Tuscarawas County Senior Center playing games and eating lunch with their friends.
In addition to his wife, Delores, Mat is survived by his children, Sally (Terry) Avant of Barberton, Mathew (Donna) Erickson Jr. of Akron, and Krista (Ron) Septer of Strasburg; his nine grandchildren, Brian (Kristy) Avant, Julie (Jason) Read, Amber Erickson, Mathew Erickson III, Veronica (Tommy) Spidell, Joseph (Amanda) Erickson, Austin Erickson, Jonathan (Colleen) Septer, and Steven (Amanda) Erickson; and his thirteen great-grandchildren.
Besides his parents, Mat was preceded in death by his son, John Erickson; his sisters, Frances Buckner, Theresa Erickson and June Groves; and his brother, Robert Erickson Jr.
Honoring Mat’s wishes, he will be cremated. A memorial service will be held Friday, January 27, at 11 a.m., in LifeWay Church, with Pastor Larry Fletcher officiating. There will be a luncheon in the church immediately following the memorial. Family and friends are invited to call at the church on Friday, 10 – 11 a.m. To sign an online guestbook and share a fond memory of Mat, please visit the Obituaries link on the Toland-Herzig website.
The family suggests that, instead of flowers, contributions in Mat’s memory be made to Community Hospice, 716 Commercial Ave. S.W.
New Philadelphia, Ohio 44663.