Joseph Matter Obituary

Joseph Lee Matter
Joseph Lee Matter

December 11, 1936 - October 17, 2020
Born in Greenville, Pennsylvania
Resided in Anchorage, Alaska


Anchorage resident, Joseph Lee Matter Sr. (best known to family and close friends as Buster, Dad, Uppa, Uncle Joe and Candy Joe) passed away peacefully at home on October 17, 2020 with his wife and family members at his side.

Joe was born in Greenville, Pennsylvania on December 11, 1938 to Thurman and Mary (Russo) Matter.
At 17, he joined the Air Force and was stationed in Korea and was transferred to Bethel, Alaska where he met his wife Delores J. Lee, better known as Dee. They were married for 61 years.

After spending six years in the Air Force; he was employed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Public Health Service as a mechanic and traveled to most of the Lower Kuskokwim River villages and was self-employed for a little while, before becoming employed by the White Alice Satellite Communication Systems and was offered a position in Aniak, Alaska, in 1968. He moved the family up there, where they lived from 1968 to 2012.

He and Dee purchased a local village store (Kusko Sales) until they sold the store in 1995.
While living in Aniak, they would travel to Napaimute, his wife’s birthplace and purchased what is known as the “White House” that had been built by Dee’s Grandfather in the early 1900’s, from Mrs. Jack Brink (Coby).

The Matters also traveled between Alaska, Pennsylvania, and Ohio regularly to visit family and renew old acquaintances.

Joe loved the times he spent with Buster Vanderpool, Larry Peterson (Pokey), and Bobby Aloysius (Chrome) and Dave Hassinger hunting and camping upriver at Telaquana Lake.
He loved going camping, traveling the river, fishing whenever he could get away with his kids and their friends and was always the camp cook!

He was actively involved with the Catholic Church fixing anything that broke down and most of all enjoyed visiting with the priests and the nuns that either lived in Aniak or was a traveling Priest or Nun. He made a hardwood processional cross which they still use.

Preceded in death by his father, mother, brothers, Donny and Bob, children, Parry and Dani, grandchild Dorinda, and two great grandchildren, Brother and Mother in law and other Lower 48 relatives.

He is survived by his wife Dee; three sisters Bonnie, Sandra and Marion; son, Jody (Gina); daughter, Desiree (Brian); five grandchildren and eight great grandchildren; two step grandchildren and one step great grandchild and numerous relatives in the lower 48.

Memorial donations can be made to the Gary Sinise Foundation P.O. Box 368, Woodland Hills, CA 91365 for Veterans

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