HAROLD GLEN MATTY MATTSONPosted: February 12th, 2014
February 10, 1935 ~ February 9, 2014 Harold Glen “Matty” Mattson passed peacefully at St.
Joseph’s Carmel Hospice in Medicine Hat during the early morning hours while surrounded by his loved ones on February 9, 2014, one day short of his 79th birthday. Harold was born on his parents’ homestead in Richmound, SK., the 9th of 11 children. During WWII, the family relocated to Medicine Hat. He loved traipsing through the hills and coulees with his faithful dog, Mickey at his side, as well as swimming, catching rattlesnakes and gophers, playing hockey and baseball. Harold’s industrious nature began early with his faithful paper route riding his CCM Sunshine bike and setting pins at the local bowling alley. Unrest at the Redcliff Dominion Glass Factory led Harold, with his sister May’s support, to join the RCAF in 1954. Such began his 28 year career in Munitions and Weapons trade followed by training for NATO in Air Weapons on HMCS Fraser where Harold was the first Air Force Armour to go to sea. His first posting was to Cold Lake where he brought his young bride, Joyce, and began a new family in 1958 with the birth of Brenda. Their posting to Marville, France had them sailing on the Cunard Cruise Ship across the Atlantic. During those four years, Collette was born in 1961 and they enjoyed seeing as much of Europe as they could. Harold’s career was free of war conflict but he was front and center during the insurgencies between France and Algeria, playing a major role with his posting in St. Jean, Quebec during the FLQ Crisis. His later years while posted at Shearwater, NS., were spent on NATO tours that took him to various ports of call. Harold’s last posting was Namao where he retired as Sergeant in 1982. His pride for the military led him to join the Centennial Legion in Dartmouth. Harold continued his deep involvement with Legion activities as he was awarded Life Member of the Redcliff Branch and was President for four terms over his 41 years of service to the Legion. He organized steak shoots, darts, bowling and golf tournaments which became his forte. Harold made everyone feel welcome and the center of attention; especially as Santa, putting a smile on the face of every small child. Remembrance Day was especially cherished by Harold as he paid tribute to his brother, Vernon, who died during WWII, by laying a wreath in his honour annually and marched in the parade. Family was paramount as Harold and Joyce sacrificed to build new homes wherever they were stationed. His daughters were the apple of his eye, bursting with pride with their accomplishments. Long treks across Canada to Medicine Hat always ended with his refrain “We’ve reached God’s Country”. Golfing and marshalling (Redcliff Riverview and Seven Oaks in Edmonton) consumed his retirement. There was always a new club to add to the golf bag. Winters in Arizona included treks to other states such as California, Nevada, Texas, Louisiana, Tennessee and Florida. Poolside with a western novel was the perfect winter getaway as long as Joyce, his life companion of 56 years, was in the lounge chair next to him and was never far from his side. Whether playing or watching sports events, winning trophies, including a Silver Medal at the 1986 Alberta Winter Games, cruising down the highways to escape the winter or visit family and friends. Harold loved to spoil Joyce with “one more lottery ticket” that was tucked inside his left shirt pocket. His family will deeply miss the twinkle in his blue eyes, his wry sense of humour, his love of joke-telling and his competitive nature playing board games (Monopoly – his best) and cards. Ever the gentleman having been surrounded by women his whole life, Harold exemplified equality and fairness. He leaves us to meet up with those long gone, “eh ya, daddy?” Our first Hero… see ya soon… Harold was pre-deceased by his parents, Hans & Bertha Mattson (nee Olsen); brothers, Vernon, Marvel, Walter, Alvin and sisters, May Sween and Eunice Mattson. He is survived by his wife, Joyce (nee Mizga); daughters, Brenda and Collette, sisters, Ruth Gallagher (California), Irene Duncan (Winnipeg), Joyce Cutts (Welland), Enid (Bob) Plumb (Smoky Lake) and sister-in-law, Marg (nee Flynn) Mattson (Medicine Hat) as well as numerous nieces and nephews. Heartfelt thanks and hugs to extra remarkable friends, Sue Faure, Dawn McMaster, Rose Witts and Dolores (Ken) Reynolds for their unending commitment in support of the family. Thanks to Pastor Mark Bolender for his special blessings and to those who gave their time to support Harold and the family in his final days. Big Hugs to the Medicine Hat Mattson and Oster families, sharing their time between Marg & Harold. Special thanks to Cheryl Bitz, RN and Dr. Emad Salih. Compassion and overwhelming respect from the staff at St. Joseph’s, Kim, Stephanie, Paula, Cathy, Amanda, Jason, Trish, Marlene and Megan. Harold’s thumbs up and blown kisses were from deep in his heart to all who cared for him at St. Joseph’s. In accordance with the family’s wishes, cremation has taken place without the proceedings of a formal funeral service. (Condolences may be expressed by visiting www.cooksouthland.com) If friends so desire, memorial tributes in Harold’s name may be made directly to St. Joseph’s Carmel Hospice, 156 – 3 Street N.E., Medicine Hat, Alberta, T1A 5M1; War Amps of Canada, Key Tag Service, 1 Maybrook Drive, Scarborough, Ontario, M1V 5K9; or to the Salvation Army Family Support Centre, 737 – 8 Street S.E., Medicine Hat, Alberta, T1A 1M6. As Harold would say… “See you good people”. Honoured to serve the family is Cook Southland Funeral Chapel, 901 – 13 Street S.W., Medicine Hat, Alberta T1A 4V4 Phone 403-527-6455.