Robert W. Mathews ’56

Robert W. Mathews ’56 died on December 5, 2017, in Falmouth, Maine.

(The following was published in the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram on December 27, 2017:)

Robert “Bob” Mathews passed away quietly at Falmouth by the Sea, on Dec. 5, 2017, after a 30-year long battle with lymphoma.

Bob was born in St. Louis, Mo., in 1934, the son of Wallace Kieselhorst and Mary Mathews. After his parents’ divorce, Bob took his mother’s maiden name. Childhood years were spent in Norwalk and West Hartford, Conn. He graduated from Bowdoin in the Class of 1956, a member of Sigma Nu fraternity.

Following Bowdoin, Bob enlisted in the Army and was stationed in Germany as a chaplain’s assistant from 1956-1958. He and Peggy were married in 1958 and returned to Wiesbaden, Germany, and Stockholm, Sweden. For the following two years, Bob, already an accomplished tenor, studied voice with several renowned operatic teachers.

Returning to the U.S. in 1960, following the birth of daughter Melissa, Bob and Peggy spent the next 12 years in Winchester and Lincoln, Mass., while Bob became a successful real estate developer in Cambridge. During this time, they purchased land and built a home in West Cundy’s Harbor. In 1972 they moved to Brunswick and bought the Harriet Beecher Stowe House Inn and Restaurant, which they ran as innkeepers until retirement in 1999.

Bob was an avid tennis player, sailor and vocalist in opera, operetta and choir. He remained active in Bowdoin Alumni affairs and Rotary International throughout the years. In retirement, he enjoyed woodworking, metal forging and creating totem poles.

Bob is survived by his wife of 59 years, Peggy; Melissa Cott, of Cumberland Foreside; Peter Mathews, and his wife Cherylan, of Palo Alto Hills, Calif.; Rob Mathews, and his wife Gretchen, of Portola Valley, Calif.; and grandchildren, Bob and Charlie Cott, Whitney and Haley Mathews, and Drew and Megan Mathews.

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