Mr. Mathues was a member of the First Christian Church of Paducah. He was born in Dayton, Ohio on January 26, 1923. His parents were John Leslie and Florence Killen Mathues. He served in the U.S. Navy during WWII as a swimming and electronics instructor. In 1944, after completing his cooperative work-school education, he graduated as a mechanical engineer from General Motors Institute (now Kettering University) in Flint, Mich. and embarked on a 44-year career with General Motors. He worked for 37 of those years at the Inland Division in Dayton, Ohio, finally serving as general manager. He graduated from the Harvard University advanced management program in 1976. In 1978 he was named a vice president of General Motors in Detroit, retiring from that position in 1985. During his career he received 14 patents.
After retirement he made his permanent home on Kentucky Lake in western Kentucky.
Mr. Mathues was active in many professional, community, and philanthropic endeavors. A few of his affiliations included being a lifetime member of the Society of Automotive Engineers, a charter member of the National Aviation Hall of Fame in Dayton, Ohio and a founding director on the Board of the Carson Four Rivers Center for the Performing Arts in Paducah. He was appointed a Kentucky Colonel in 1986.
In his personal time, he was a private pilot and flying instructor, an avid sailor and a lifelong teacher and student.
He was preceded in death by his first wife, Patricia McFarland Mathues.
He is survived by his wife, Mary Nell Pepper Mathues; his four children, Thomas P. Mathues, Creston, Iowa, Rebecca Jo Mathues, Eddyville, John H. H. Mathues of Evergreen, Colo. and Jennifer Mathues Briggs of Crawfordville, Fla. and 10 grandchildren.
A memorial service was held Monday, April 1, at First Christian Church in Paducah, with the Rev. Mariann Lankton officiating.
Memorial contributions made be made to the National Aviation Hall of Fame, 1100 Spaatz Street, Dayton, OH 45433; the Carson Center, 100 Kentucky Ave, Paducah, KY 42003; or Lourdes Hospice, 2855 Jackson Street, Paducah, KY, 42003.
Roth Funeral Chapel is in charge of arrangements.
Online condolences may be left at www.rothfuneralchapel.com.