Obituary: Clarence Emil De Mattei of Marion

Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), March 6, 2018 | Go to article overview

Obituary: Clarence Emil De Mattei of Marion


Clarence De Mattei, 87, passed away at 3:42 a.m. Thursday, March 1, 2018, at Heartland Regional Medical Center.

Clarence was born in his home in Benton, Illinois, on July 10, 1930, to Aldo Giuseppe Angelo (Joe) and Ernestine (Lovati) De Mattei from Cuggiono, Milano, Italy.

He graduated from Benton High School in 1948 and enlisted in the Navy. He returned and earned his bachelor's and master's degrees in education from Southern Illinois University in 1952.

His passions were woodworking, craftsmanship, drafting, construction and athletics, and he had a positive impact on hundreds of students, athletes and colleagues. He married his high school sweetheart and love of his life, Mary Jean O'Hara De Mattei, in 1954. He was blessed with six children, eight grandchildren, and a great-grandbaby soon to be born. Clarence relished every minute that he spent with his family.

Clarence was preceded in death by his wife, Mary Jean, after 63 years of marriage. He is also preceded in death by his parents; his sister Theresa (De Mattei) and her husband William Barminski; sister Josephine (De Mattei) and her husband Richard Nash; brother Aldo De Mattei; brother William "Chick" De Mattei and his wife Vera (Austin); and a nephew, Tommy Barminiski.

He is survived by many beloved family members including son J.J. and his wife, Teresa, of Centralia; son Clay and his wife, Lety, of Marion; son Mike and his wife, Ronda, of Marion; daughter Gina Crippen and her husband, Larry of Mooresville, North Carolina; son John of Berthoud, Colorado; and daughter Jenna Fletcher and her husband, John, of Marion.

Grandchildren are Brad and (Britni) De Mattei of Manchester, Missouri; Bryan and (Kellee) De Mattei of Marion; Emily De Mattei of Marion; Brody De Mattei of St. Louis, Missouri; Kevin Crippen of Kannapolis, North Carolina; Clay and (McKenzie) Crippen of Athens, Georgia; Caroline Fletcher of Marion; and David Fletcher of Marion. He is also survived by several nieces and nephews.

Clarence was a faithful member of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Marion for 63 years and frequented the 8 a.m. service at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church in Herrin. He was of member of the Knights of Columbus # 8210, a blood donor for the American Red Cross for many years, and a member of the Illinois Retired Teacher's Association (IRTA).

Clarence was a member and volunteer at the Williamson County Historical Museum in Marion. He created several historical displays for the museum with the Southern Illinois Coal artifacts being one of the most extensive projects.

Clarence helped restore the Williamson County Jail and was instrumental with its enlistment on the National Register of Historic Places for its original architecture and has helped other historic properties be listed too.

He was a lifetime member of the Local Carpenters Union and the United Brotherhood of Carpenters, and he has been a member at the Old Marion Country Club for 48 years where he and his family spent many hours picnicking, swimming, fishing, and hunting. …

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