Paul Eugene “Shorty” Mathias, 97, of New Philadelphia, whose speedometer finally stopped cranking, went home to be with the Lord on Monday, February 1, 2021 at The Inn at Northwood Village in Dover.
A son of the late Elmer and Irene (Kuhn) Mathias, Shorty was born January 27, 1924 in his childhood home on Stonecreek Road in New Philadelphia.
He was a 1943 graduate of New Philadelphia High School and a veteran of the United States Army. On April 2, 1956, Shorty married the former Jean Wolf and the couple shared nearly 64 years of marriage prior to her passing on January 18, 2020. Shorty and Jean were members of Jerusalem Church where he formerly served as a deacon. He was also a longtime member of the New Philadelphia Elks.
Shorty’s true passions in life were people and cars and over the many years as an automobile salesman, these two passions were so tightly intertwined. His career started at the age of 17, with the family business, Mathias Auto Sales, on Old Route 21 in New Philadelphia, and lasted all the way to the age of 94, selling his last car at Ferris Chevrolet. Throughout those decades of selling automobiles, Shorty formed many relationships and because of his selfless and generous spirit, he afforded many people facing difficult times the opportunity to purchase vehicles. He would often co-sign on loans or simply offer a special deal to those who just needed a break in life. Shorty’s career of selling automobiles spanned four generations and when it was all said and done, he ranked among the Top 10 Automobile Salesmen of All Time in the United States having sold more than 22,000 vehicles.
Shorty also deeply cherished his family. He used his life’s work as an example for his children to live by and in turn they could follow in their father’s footsteps. He taught them that throughout their own life and careers, they could duplicate his dedication to hard work but more importantly, his desire in taking care of people and exhibiting generosity in the process. He’ll especially be remembered by his family for his joyfulness and positivity, never having had a bad day that they ever witnessed, and his zeal for life. And, on top of that, they’ll remember his ability to eat, and eat some more, often times making his way into the kitchens at restaurants looking for more food after finishing his first meal.
He is survived by his children, Jeff (Tammy) Mathias and Paula (Steve) Sulzener both of New Philadelphia and Reverend Stan Mathias of Orlando, Florida; his “adopted” children Phil and Sharon Tidrick of New Philadelphia; his grandchildren, Erika (Shawn) Tharp, Brook (Chris) Watson, Stefane (Christian) Sexton, Scott (Brianne) Sulzener, Trey Mathias and Jayden Mathias; Logan (Lindsey) Tidrick, and Kayela (Brittany) Tidrick; great-grandchildren, Brennan Mathias, Caysen Tharp, Aleah, Jayli, Kiera, and Elise Sexton, Eloise Sulzener, Bailey and Blair Tidrick and Dashel Tidrick; and his sister, Della Flickinger.
Shorty was preceded in death by his parents, his wife and his siblings, Lester Mathias, Rose Beitzel, Myles Mathias and Alma Casebeer.
A funeral service celebrating Shorty’s life will be held on Saturday, February 6, 2021 at 11:00 a.m. in NewPointe Community Church at Dover with his son, Reverend Stan Mathias, officiating. For those unable to attend in person, Shorty’s service may be viewed through a Facebook Live Stream via the Geib Funeral Homes & Crematories Facebook site. Immediately following the service, a reception will be held in the church, where guests will be able to greet the family at that time. Burial will take place privately in East Avenue Cemetery at New Philadelphia.
Contributions may be made in Shorty’s memory to Friends of the Homeless of Tuscarawas County, 211 East High Avenue, New Philadelphia, OH 44663 or to The Greater Dover-New Philadelphia Food Pantry, 420 West Third Street, Dover, OH 44622.