Deceased September 24, 2000
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Boston has produced some fine people, but few as fine as our Mat. Fresh out of Winthrop High School, he arrived at Amherst intent on sitting out the Depression. Then he discovered he liked the place. So he stayed four years, long enough to raise the rosy goblet at graduation.
To work. A job at General Securities in Boston—not advising on investments, they gave him a pencil and told him he was the office manager. On the side, he studied accounting at Boston University. Not exactly his niche in life, he decided. But the War came along and bailed him out. The brass in Washington conceived a plan for him. He would go to Ohio State and take a crash course in engineering. Does that seem like a natural? Luckily, for all of us, the war ended before he could erect any Bailey bridges.
Back in civilian life, Mat caught on in the clothing business, women's sportswear to be specific. He stayed in that business until retirement; he liked it. He held executive positions in several different companies in the Boston area and ran his own operation, Pelham Blouse Company, for about fourteen years. Involved was quite a bit of travel, and he liked that as well.
Along the way he got himself a wife, Eleanor Gilman, who was a teacher. So Mat never stopped learning. They had a daughter and a son, both of whom are on the West Coast. His son, Richard, who was in the class of '74—so you know he is brilliant—wrote that his father loved Amherst: the College "gave him an intellectual curiosity, a love of life, and a respect for other people that lasted his entire life. Like many other Amherst graduates, he always talked fondly of his days at Amherst."
Until his final days, that is, when the curse of Alzheimer's took him into the never-never land of forgetfulness.
But we do not forget this man, this quiet, likable classmate, with his subtle sense of humor.
We miss you, Mat.
John D. Leinbach '35