Yale '62 - Obituaries - William L. Matthes

William L. Matthes

Born: April 12, 1939
Died: May 15, 1998

Bill Matthes, a native of New York City, came to Yale from St. Paul's, class of 1957, after a postgraduate year at Lawrenceville. Bill was a member of the Freshman football and hockey teams. He was a resident of Silliman, where he also played on the college hockey team. He attended Yale with our class Freshman and Sophomore years. Although he said in the 1962 Banner that he was intending to return in the Fall of 1962, he did not.

At Yale he had been majoring in Chemical Engineering. However, after he left Yale, Bill studied at Harvard in economics and then attended New York University, School of Journalism.

For a time he lived in Sarasota, Florida where he engaged in various entrepreneurial activities including starting a premium awards stamp plan, the Sarasota Independent Stamp Program. In 1970 he relocated to Hopewell Junction in Duchess County, New York. He started a biweekly newspaper, the "Lookout" which he published until his death. He also developed a deep interested in computers and conducted computer-related business activities in addition to his newspaper. Bill was very active in the Hudson River environmental preservation movement and vigorously supported conservation efforts in the Hudson River Valley. He owned an old farmhouse and barn and was also involved in historical preservation in Duchess County.

Bill died suddenly of a heart attack while on a Northwest Airlines flight from Phoenix to New York on May 15, 1998. He was returning from a Mother's Day visit to his mother who then resided in Phoenix.

Bill never married. He was survived by his mother, Sara Jane Romes Matthes, who now resides in Coronado, California, and his sister, Sue M. Galvin, also of Coronado. Mrs. Galvin supplied information for his obituary. "Bill was always a champion of the underdog," his sister remembers, "and deeply committed to environmental preservation in the Hudson River Valley."