Matthews, Fred Dickson

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May 16, 1940 - October 30, 2018

Matthews, Fred Dickson

Fred Dickson Matthews, age 78, went to be with our Lord Jesus on October 30, 2018 after a long and courageous battle with multiple disabilities and COPD.  Fred was under the loving care of his wife, Rita, for many years.  He was born in Gladewater, Texas on May 16, 1940 to parents, Lloyd and Mary Ella Dickson Matthews.  He grew up in Gladewater and graduated from Gladewater High School in 1958 and received his Bachelors and Masters degrees from North Texas State College.  Fred proudly served his country for three years in the U. S. Army and was stationed in the Philippines in the field of foreign communications.

Fred devoted 35 years of his life to coaching, teaching math, and touching the lives of young people. Those years were spent coaching football and baseball at the University of Texas at Arlington, Pasadena Sam Rayburn High School, The Colony High School, and others.  He counted among his friends all the players he coached through the years and fellow coaches all over Texas.  Fred was blessed to have a career he loved, but most of all, he loved the kids and fellow coaches.  Everyone who knows Fred has heard a good football story and probably more than one.

Despite years of disability and health challenges, Fred never lost his love of life and never complained about his circumstances.  He remained positive and courageous until the end.  Fred was a true example for all of us on how to deal with life’s adversities with character, strength, and most of all, faith in our Lord and Savior.

Left behind to cherish his memory are his wife of 30 years, Rita, two sisters, Sue Martin and Pam Ross (David), stepson Brent Haynes and his family, Erin, Collin and Keller, and three nephews.  Fred is also survived by three loyal friends and coaching buddies, Charles Lyles, Mike Venable, and Al Campo.  We will carry your memory and life lessons in our hearts.

The family wishes to extend their heartfelt thanks to those who helped care for Fred over the years.

The Matthews family will be receiving friends and family for visitation from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm, Monday, November 5, 2018 in the Brooks Family Chapel of the North Dallas Funeral Home, 2710 Valley View Lane, Farmers Branch, followed by a graveside service at 2:00 at Frankford Cemetery, 17400 Muirfield Drive, Dallas, Texas 75287.

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Virginia Go

November 06, 2018 12:54PM

I did not know Fred when he was in good health but he was a very courageous person to endure all his illnesses.


Al Campo Sr.

November 06, 2018 9:25AM

I first meet Coach Matthews when Coach Lyles came Sam Rayburn High in Pasadena as the new Head Football Coach. I was fortunate to remain on the staff at Sam Rayburn as the Varsity Defensive tackle coach and the Head Baseball coach. Little did I know that I would make friends for a lifetime, including Fred, Mike Venerable and Charlie Lyles. Fred had worked with Coach Lyles before, so he knew what Coach Lyles expected from his defensive tackles. We both were lived in the same apartments so it was real easy for me to walk over and talk football for hours with Fred. I found out Fred would talk football because he loved it and was enjoying helping me as much as I enjoyed learning from him. As time went on we became close friends. During Football season Fred would talk a roll of 16mm tape of our opponent on Wed night home and that would be our night to study the film and also me learn how the offense tried to attack a defense. Fred was a technician in coaching and could go in detail in coaching a technique and I was the same type person, so we could talk football and baseball because Fred was a previous a Head Baseball at University of Texas at Arlington. We enjoy working together at Rayburn from 1974 to 1985. Fred actually coached my son Al Jr. and responsible for Al developing into an all-district QB his senior year and my son said it was because of the coaching he received from Coach Matthews Fred talked tough on the football field, but he loved kids and had a big, big heart. I have had no less that 75 players, students, teachers and administrators comment when I posted Fred's passing away on my Facebook of how much they enjoyed having his a coach and as a teacher of both football, math and lessons he taught them for life. Teachers and administrators commented how much they enjoy working with him and enjoyed his many stories. I was fortunate enough to hear them all. I loved Coach Matthews and will miss him very much. All the years I knew coach, something was missing in his life and when he went with Coach Lyles to R.L Turner he found what he was missing RITA. I was still in Pasadena and he wanted to introduce Rita to me and my Mom and Dad. So, he brought Rita to Pasadena and we meet Rita for first the first time. Such beautiful women and a good person. I told Fred later "You are highly over matched and had out kicked his punt coverage." They were married for 30 years. I would like to thank Rita for taking such good care of my dear friend after he became ill and had a tough health situation for about 10 years before he passed. All of the times I talked to Fred after he became ill he never complained. He lived exactly with the same toughness he taught his players. I will miss my loyal friend that I could talk to him about anything. I know Fred was a believer and he is with his Lord and Savior.


Rev Dimitri and Susan Cozby

November 05, 2018 7:26PM

May the Lord grant him blessed peace and may He comfort our dear cousin Rita and the rest of the family


Carla Rollerson

November 04, 2018 9:33PM

Coach Had A Heart Of A Gun Fighter,Never Complained,And Remained Positive Thru It All.To Know Coach Was To Love Him.Rita God Broke The Mold,You were Dedicated Patient,Honorable Along With Loving.Perfect Example Of Agape.I Thank You Coach For Allowing Me To Care For You,I Took.Pride In Making Sure You Were Ready To Rock The Day Away.I Will Miss You & Never Forget You.Rest In Heaven,Where You Can Still Look Down & Give The Cowboys Advice.


Carla Rollerson

November 04, 2018 9:28PM

Coach Had A Heart If Gun Fighter,Never Complained,And Remained Positive Thru It All.To Know Coach Was To Love Him.Rita God Broke The Mold,Dedicated Patient,Honorable Along With Loving.Perfect Example Of Agape.I Thank You Coach For Allowing Me To Care For You,I Took.Pride In Making Sure You Were Ready To Rock The Day Away.I Will Miss You & Never Forget You.Rest In Heaven,Where You Can Still Look Down & Give The Cowboys Advice.


Larry Mitchell

November 02, 2018 4:56PM

Fred was a good story teller. After 1958 we lost contact, but I have great memories of those high school years. My condolences to Fred's family. May the Lord bless the family.
Larry Mitchell
Gladewater High 1958


Delta English

November 02, 2018 9:58AM

I worked with Fred for several years so SRHS. He coached both of my boys and one of them was so lucky to work with him for several years.. He is a great man that loved teaching and coaching. He will be missed by many.


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