Thief River Falls - Clayton Bernard Mathson passed away on Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013 at his residence with his loving wife at his side at the age of 86 years, 7 months, 23 days.
Funeral services were held Saturday Jan. 12 at St. Pauli Lutheran Church in rural Thief River Falls, with Rev. Carl Hansen officiating. Interment was held at St. Pauli Cemetery.
Clayton Bernard Mathson was born May 17, 1926 to Martin and Alma (Moe) Mathson on the family farm. Clayton was baptized and confirmed at St. Pauli Lutheran Church and attended Cheerville County School. Clayton graduated from Cheerville County School and became a fulltime farmer with his father on the farm that was homesteaded by his grandfather in 1870.
Music was a great love of his from early on in his life. Clayton played button accordion, piano and guitar thru-out his life and played his keyboard for his family often. Clayton wrote several songs that were placed at the library of congress in Washington, D.C.
On June 14, 1952, Clayton was united in marriage to Inez Hagen at Rindal Lutheran Church. Inez joined him as a full-time partner at Mathson Family Farms. To this union, five children were born, and raised on the farm and were blessed to share his life: Brenda, Bruce, Clair, Christi, and Brian.
Clayton was a lifetime member of St. Pauli Lutheran Church where he sang in the choir, served many terms on the church council, and numerous church committees. Clayton served on the Rocksbury Township Board for 45 years and, in 1996, Clayton and Inez were honored as Farm Family of the Year. Upon retirement from farming, Clayton drove school bus for ISD 564 for 13 years – an experience he enjoyed a great deal.
Clayton is survived by his wife Inez; his five children: Brenda (Jeffery) Nielsen of New Ulm, Bruce (Shelley) Mathson of Thief River Falls, Clair Mathson of Thief River Falls, Christi (Bruce) Carter of Janesville, and Brian Mathson of Grand Forks, N.D.; and six grandchildren: Michelle (Jason) Forness, Rachel (Matt) Kleberg, Peter (Betsy) Nielsen, Leah (Kai) Koehne, Travis Mathson, and Kayla Mathson; four great-grandchildren: Chase, Kinsey, Carson and Lukas; two step-grandchildren: Kelly (Rob) Moe and Bryon (Jamie) Cleven; and five step-great-grandchildren: Alexis, Dexter, Mercede, Hannah and Connor. Clayton is also survived by one sister, Fern Bock, and three sisters-in-law: Shirly (Ron) Smith, Joyce (Darrel) Qualley and Judy Mason; as well as several nieces, nephews and cousins.
Clayton was preceded in death by his parents and his sister Mabel Lemky.