September 26, 1960 - December 18, 2020
Matthews, Ted Manchester, Michigan Highlights of the life of Ted Gerard Matthews. In September of 1960, “quietly”, another Matthews’s baby was born into this world, as the 5th son of George and Loretta. He was to become known as Ted Gerard. That’s right, Ted, and not short for Theodore, according to Mom. He came“quietly”, because he was the 6th of 8 children born into the Matthews family. Don’t ever remember him crying or being loud, even as he laid in bed with a broken arm and leg. Of course, any sound he might have made was drowned out by an already full house. Rarely was he ever heard from, due in part to the laughing of his brother, Paul John, who could and can still fill a room with his infectious laugh. Of course, Paul was spurred on by the middle brother of the 3 known as Gary Robert, who was the most demanding of all of us children and always seeking the spotlight, through hamburger dinners with or without ketchup, or being the snitch of the family when somebody did something wrong. So, Ted grew up as the quiet one, just another kid, to take up another bed, in an already crowded 2-bunk bedroom. No complaints or gripes ever heard from him. From his oldest brother Tom’s view, he was just another crying baby for him to tease and boss around. As for his brother Dick, who acted more like the oldest brother of the family than Tom could ever aspire to, I’m sure he saw Ted as a prototype that he could mold into a baseball player, or hockey player, a skier, or of course a golfer. To his oldest sister Diana, he was another baby she could help Mom take care of. Eventually she would be the go-to babysitter for us all, including her older brothers, as holy hell always broke loose when Tom and Dick were in charge. Time meandered on for a few years until sister, Sharon Lynn, was born. And that was the start of the Matthews “Rat Pack”. Those 4 kids, Paul, Gary, Ted, and Sharon, became tightly interwoven, always on the go, and to this day are the heart and soul of this family. Years later. No, make that years and years later, along came Joy Marie. She’s a Loretta look alike and feel alike, who formed the closest and most loving association with Ted, and that is most appreciated by her brothers and sisters. What a loving, caring, sensitive, and mature woman she has turned out to be. Thank you Joy, for being there and worrying for Ted all these years. We all remember Ted as a gifted athlete--baseball, hockey, water skiing, and golf, maybe others. But we all know he loved the water and his passion was sailing. He was a gifted student, certainly a Brainiac of sorts, an engineer, and a boat craftsman that could actually build what he designed. He has designed and built many scale model sailboats as a testament to his abilities. Ok, they were built from scratch and looked as such, but he swore they could float in real life. Tell you one thing, if you ended up on a deserted island you’d want him with you. No doubt he could build something out of debris he’d find on the beach and float you back to civilization. He attained a degree in naval architecture and marine engineering, which is almost the equivalent of being a rocket scientist. That’s right, “almost”, maybe the exception being prone to pull off stupid and daring stunts like climbing radio towers on top of mountains. We all loved the water. Ted maybe more than us. We all grew up summers at “The Cottage” on Portage Lake. The Hobie Cat sailing hobby led Ted to the life of a sailor that went beyond what any of us could imagine. Are you kidding, who crosses the Atlantic Ocean in the middle of the night guided by a compass, while searching out the North Star with a sextant, to finally end up on a beach in the Bahamas. Then turn around and come back at night to the exact place he started. No radios, no GPS, nothing. This is what we’ll remember about our brother. What he could have been. What he should have been. Where he would be if his life and his mind had not come under attack. While coping with the tragedy of his new way of life, Ted’s world was completed when he met his wife of over 30 years, Dawn Tardy. She has been his sea anchor in the storm. Hopefully Dawn, he was the rudder that guided your ship, but we’re inclined to believe you had to man the sails, anchors, and wheel, by yourself, more times than not. Thank you so much Dawn for taking care of our brother. We are eternally grateful, and we give you all our love. We know that since the two of you have been together, you had to overcome storms and rough seas in the search for calm harbors, even if they were temporary escapes or at times just a mirage. We can’t imagine what a mind must go through to maintain some normalcy of life as you did with Ted, and you continue to do so, on your own. You have been a miracle to Ted and admired by all of us. As we listen to sailing songs, vivid memories should return, and dreams of summer days may fill our minds as though we are kids once again and back at “The Cottage”. We all remember those days when our only concern was where we’d get the next dollar for gas and another ski ride. Didn’t have to worry about going hungry, Gramma Kate and Aunt Joan kept us loaded with food and drink. Come to think of it, just wondering, if it was Aunt Joan that kept feeding the gas kitty for us. Of all the memories there is one picture to paint that should forever stand out in our minds. It can be as real as you want it to be or certainly a stunning Loret abstract. It’s a day in June, a strong easterly wind is blowing steady from the marina and boat launch to Fox Pointe. You remember, the kind that makes the sails sing and chops the lake into white capped waves, framed by intense blue skies, blinding sun light interrupted by large puffy white clouds. You know, kind of cool, almost cold, while standing on the dock, and hotter than hell out of the wind and back by the garage. Can’t you just feel the kind of day it was. As we shade our eyes from the intense glare, we see a crazed sailor, solo. He’s hooked into a trapeze harness, and hiking out high on the windward side of the purist of white Hobie Cats. He must be 20 feet in the air. Watch as the hull fights its sails, trying to capture every bit of power from a rogue gust of wind that suddenly scattered the clouds. Sure enough, you finally make out that the pilot is Ted, with a big, no, wait, make that a huge smile on his face. Yes, he was in his world back then. Say a prayer for him and let’s hope he continues finding this moment in time again and again in his new life just as we’ll remember him from now on. We love you brother. You have been and will be forever missed. Please leave a message of comfort for Ted’s family or sign his guestbook at www.EinederFuneralHomes.com.
Matthews, Ted Manchester, Michigan Highlights of the life of Ted Gerard Matthews. In September of 1960, “quietly”, another Matthews’s baby was born into this world, as the 5th son of George and Loretta. He was to become known... View Obituary & Service Information
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