Paul Ray “Pappy” Matthews, 83, of New Castle passed away on September 15, 2015 after a brief illness. He was born in Monticello, Kentucky on May 27, 1932 to the late Finley and Lillie Poe Matthews.
Paul Ray attended school in Wayne County, Kentucky and moved to New Castle in 1949. He was employed by Dana Corporation for 35 ½ years and retired on Dec. 31, 1985. He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Lena Gaye Neal Matthews and their children, Paul Duane (Beverly) Matthews, Billie Elaine (Tim) Gwinn and Michael Ray (Rhonda) Matthews, all of New Castle. Grandchildren, Brian (Lori) Matthews, Dustin (Courtney) Matthews, Paula Gay Gwinn Hibbard (fiancé Kent Bubp), Chris (Natalie) Gwinn, Neal Gwinn, Emily Amburgey of Westfield, Paul Michael Matthews (fiancé Morgan Viars) of Kokomo, step-grandchildren Ashley (Aaron) Huffman, Shannon (Nathan) Wright and Lee (Amber) Marcum.
His great-grandchildren include, Taylor Matthews, Tori Matthews, Caleb Matthews, Christina Gwinn, Jaira and Jalena Hibbard, Megan Gwinn, Nathan Gwinn, Riley and Lillian Amburgey and ten step- great grandchildren, Kayla Huffman, Trevor Huffman, William Huffman, Nicholas Huffman, Isabel Wright, Jasper Wright, Jonah Wright, Kisen Marcum, Callan Marcum and Lane Marcum; brother-in-law, U.G. (Gene) Neal and many special nieces and nephews.
He was a member of the New Castle Church of Christ, after being baptized in 2004 and also a member of UAW Local 370. An avid Kentucky basketball fan, Paul Ray was a lifetime supporter of the Wildcats. He was a long-time bowler throughout his life where he met many friends he cherished. Bowling up into his 80s, he stayed involved, when not bowling, he often watched his teams bowl, often offering his opinion. A fan of NASCAR, the late Dale Earnhardt was his all-time favorite driver. He enjoyed watching his grandchildren play baseball and he was a fan of the Chicago Cubs and Cincinnati Reds. Paul Ray loved watching the Western channel on television.
Always ready to help his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren, Paul Ray was a dependable supporter and rescued many in his family from car trouble or when they were stranded. He loved to travel and in addition to his frequent visits home to Wayne County Kentucky and the Dale Hollow Lake area, his favorite trip was with his wife, Gaye, to Hawaii in 2001 for their 50th wedding anniversary.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by five brothers, Arnold, Lonzo, Ott, Eugene and Finley Jr. Matthews; six sisters, Dellas Beaty, Lucy Miller, Edna Dunnington, Maye White, Irene Neal and Iva Denney; and his in-laws, W.O. “Willie” and Mattie Neal; brother-in-laws, Wandle “Dude” Neal, Jessie Neal and a sister-in-law, Juanita Smith; a great-grandson, Dakota Daniel Hibbard and step-great grandchildren, Olivia and Elijah Wright.
Services will be 12:00 p.m. Saturday, September 19, 2015 at Hinsey-Brown Funeral Service, New Castle with Pastor Rod Beheler officiating. Burial will follow in South Mound Cemetery. Visitation will be from 4:30- 8:30 p.m. Friday, September 18, 2015 at the funeral home and one hour prior to the service. You may leave a condolence or share a memory of Paul Ray at www.hinsey-brown.com. Donations in his memory may be offered to the Henry County Community Foundation, P.O. Box 6006, New Castle, IN 47362, Cancer Society of Henry County Fund.
Courtesy of Hinsey-Brown Funeral Home.