MILTON MORRIS MATHIS, SR., was born on November 22, 1932, in Cotton Plant, Arkansas, to Milton John and Alice Elizabeth Mathis. He was the 12th of 14 children. After a long battle with dementia and suffering a broken hip on New Year’s Day, God called him home on January 14, 2021, with his oldest granddaughter, Eshon, by his side.
Milton found Christ at an early age attending New Home Baptist Church in Howell, Arkansas. Upon moving to St. Louis, Milton joined Antioch Baptist Church under the leadership of Pastor William Collins, Jr., and attended Sunday School with Ms. Coleman.
Growing up, Milton was the only boy with 11 sisters, as his two brothers died young. He was spoiled by his sisters, who all lovingly referred to him as “Brother.” Milton graduated from Brinkley Mary Anderson High School in Brinkley, Arkansas. He attended college in Pine Bluff, Arkansas before enlisting in the United States Air Force. There, Milton spent time in Texas and New Mexico and obtained the rank of Staff Sergeant. Milton later earned an Associate in Arts degree from Forest Park Community College and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Webster College. He worked for the U.S. Army Aviation Systems Command on Goodfellow Blvd. in St. Louis, MO as a Technical Manual Writer/Editor. He retired after a career of over 20 years.
Milton relocated to St. Louis, MO in 1953, where he met the love of his life, Alice Louise Davis, whom he lovingly referred to as “Lou.” The two were married on June 29, 1960, and shared six children. His oldest son, Dennis Van Doren Mathis, and oldest daughter, Bernadette Mathis, preceded him in death. Milton and Alice enjoyed traveling, fishing, going to dances, playing cards, and watching baseball.
Throughout his life, Milton enjoyed watching and playing sports. He was an avid softball player, often organizing family games, playing in local leagues, and even playing on a co-ed team with his two youngest children, Nita and Milton Jr., until his late sixties. He was also a competitive bowler, participating in several leagues winning multiple tournament awards.
He was a wonderful family man, known as everyone’s favorite uncle, and a friend to everyone he encountered. He was a member of the Town and Country Social club, well known for their dances and annual picnics held at Tillies Park. He was a regular patron of the Casablanca/Starz Lounge, known for his mild manner and kind spirit.
Milton was a comedian at heart, often giving quick-witted, joking responses even during his latter struggles with dementia. While we will sincerely miss his warm spirit, funny demeanor, and unconditional love, we are truly thankful for the 88 wonderful years that God allowed him to spend on this earth.
Milton leaves to cherish his memory: his loving wife of over 60 years, Alice Louise Mathis; sons, Jerry Hughes, Sr., (Pamela) and Milton Mathis, Jr.; daughters, Kimberly Mathis and Alice “Nita” Henderson; three sisters, Hazel Meriwether (James), Ruth Bostic, and Oralesper McNeal; 11 grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends.
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