Harriet Gladys Mattheis was born on December 16, 1928 to Harry Bender and Lucille Valentine Bender in Berkeley. During her growing-up years she lived in Bay Area and Southern California communities. After graduating from high school, she attended and studied music at Pasadena City College and La Verne College. While at La Verne she met James Milton Mattheis and they were married on December 19, 1949. Together they lived in Los Angeles, Eureka, Willow Creek, Hoopa and Weaverville.
Harriet was an accomplished musician with a lovely voice, and she sang in many choirs and chorale groups. She also directed children and adult church choirs. She once composed a Christmas Cantata for the whole K-6 elementary school community at Redeemer Baptist School in Los Angeles. Harriet played several instruments, including the piano, violin and organ. She often spoke of her organ professor at La Verne, Ralph Travis, nicknamed “Travy,” and fondly remembered learning to play the pipe organ in the campus chapel. She used her organ-playing and directing skills at many churches, including the First Covenant Church in Eureka and the First Baptist Church in Weaverville. In her final years she loved to listen to the Kegg organ being played at Christ Episcopal Church, Eureka. In addition to playing, Harriet also gave piano and violin lessons to many children and adults.
After retirement, Harriet and Jim loved to jump into their RV to visit relatives and to experience the beautiful sights of the United States and Canada.
Those who knew Harriet experienced her great joy and enthusiasm for sharing music, her friendly spirit, her delightful sense of humor and most importantly, her deep love for God and the Christian faith. She passed away on November 9, 2022 at Redwood Memorial Hospital with Paul and Pam lovingly at her side.
Harriet was preceded in death by her husband Jim in 2015. They were married sixty-five years. She was also preceded in death by her dear sister, Jean Clark. She is survived by her daughter and son-in-law Pam and Paul Gossard (Eureka), her son and daughter-in-law John and Susan Mattheis (San Diego), her son Timothy Mattheis (Maui), grandson Daniel Gossard and wife Becky (Salem, Oregon), and great-grandchildren Eden Joy, Alexandria Elizabeth, and Elisha James Gossard. She is also survived by her dear friends Lois Gossard and Lee Ann Gossard.
The family would like to thank the residents and staff at Frye’s Care Home for providing a caring and loving community for Harriet in the final years of her life. Thanks also to the staff at Redwood Memorial Hospital for the loving care shown her during her final days and hours.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Harriet’s memory to the organ and music fund at Christ Episcopal Church in Eureka, California.
A service for Harriet will be held on Friday, December 2, at 11 in the morning at Christ Episcopal Church, 15th and H Streets, Eureka.
The obituary above was submitted on behalf of Harriet Mattheis’s loved ones. The Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. See guidelines here. Email email@example.com.