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Obituary (AR): Mrs. Agnes (Thomas R. Mathis '52)

Posted on 09/12/2018

Mrs. Agnes Mathis  (April 11, 1931 – September 4, 2018)

Agnes Ann Neimeyer Mathis, known to her friends and family as Agnes, Agnes Ann, or Sister, was born on 11 April 1931 to Byron and Agnes Neimeyer in Hot Springs, Arkansas. She died on 4 September 2018 after 87 years of a full and joyous lifeShe had one elder brother, Frank Neimeyer II. She was an avid horsewoman from a young age, and spent much of her growing up years exploring the woods and roads of Hot Springs on horseback. She graduated from Hot Springs High in 1949, and made her debut in Hot Springs the following year. She went to Randolph-Macon Woman's College in Lynchburg Virginia, graduating with an A.B. in Political Science in 1953While in college Agnes began dating Thomas Ronald Mathis ("Ron"), a midshipman at the Naval Academy who had been a friend while at Hot Springs High School. Agnes and Ron were married in June 1953 at the First Presbyterian Church in Hot Springs, and Agnes began her career in what is often called the hardest job in the Navy-the Navy wife. Ron and Agnes adopted two children, Carol and Tom, and raised them while moving to assignments in California, Florida, and Virginia. At every port of call, Agnes followed her passion for volunteerism, and was active in Navy Relief, an agency designed to assist Navy families in financial stress. When Ron retired from the Navy in 1983, the couple moved back to Hot Springs, putting deep roots into the community they grew up in. Agnes quickly got busy in the volunteerism and church activities she loved. She was an Elder and Deacon at First Presbyterian Church and a Charter Member on the Board of Directors of Garvan Woodland Gardens. She was on the Board of Directors for Jackson House since 1985, and a volunteer since 1982, finding innovative ways to help the Hot Springs business community get involved in providing meals each day to Jackson House clients. Other activities included being a member of Progressive Club, Grow and Show Garden Club, Serendipity Book Club, the Hot Springs National Park Kennel Club, and the Afghan Hound Club of America. Agnes loved travel, and she and Ron visited 28 countries after retirement from the Navy. She raised and showed Afghan Hounds and successfully "finished" several of the Afghan puppies she bred. She promoted Garvan Woodland Gardens and was a fixture at the miniature train at the Gardens each Christmas. She loved music and could be seen at cultural events all over Hot Springs. Agnes is survived by her children and their spouses, Tom and Veronica Mathis, and Carol Mathis and Lorene Armes, as well as her grandchildren and great grandchildren: TJ (Stacy), Jake (Whitney), and Brittany, Connor, Ashlynn, Sadiana, Luke, Cohen and Corbin. She leaves a legacy of giving to her church and her community. Services will be at First Presbyterian Church, Hot Springs, Arkansas at 2pm Monday, September 10. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations to Garvan Woodland Gardens, Jackson House, or First Presbyterian Church are requested. DONATIONS Garvan Woodland Gardens The Jackson House