The man affectionately known as the"Don Ho" of Porterville, Edward Stephen Kealiikaapuni Mathias, passed away at his daughters home in Fresno, California, Tuesday, March 4, 2014 of natural causes.Ed was 87 years old, andnever hesitated to sharehis secret of long life….keep breathing! Hewas born in Honokohua,Maui, Hawaii on June 24,1926, to Manuel FurtadoMathias and Rose PiimaunaPaliokaweloa. Hewas the ninth of thirteenchildren and was raisedin a home with musicand singing. Edward'ssurviving siblings are Betty Gonsalves, RoseYoshizawa, ErnestMathias, Dorothy Awaiiand Jordan Mathias.|
His surviving children are Cynthia Hardy, Ellen Thomas andNaomi(Mimi)Schuler. Ed has 17 grandchildrenand 23 great-grandchildren, all who have greatl ove(aloha) for him. Ed loved the families in the small communitywhere he grew up and attended Honokohua Grammar School and Lahainaluna High School.
As a youth he excelled in basketball and ukulele. Ed was in high school when Pearl Harbor was attacked. He described life with mandatory blackouts at night and the gas mask being aconstant companion. He served in the air force from 1945-1948. He received a GI Bill that enabled him to attend Brigham Young University where he met and married his sweetheart, Carrie Eardley.
Ed graduated from BYU in 1954 when he, Carrie and their new daughter, Cynthia moved back to his beloved Hawaiian community and teach school. They lived happily there when their second daughter Ellen was born. Eventually, they decided to move to the mainland. Ed searched out jobs and found an opportunity in Porterville, California, which he accepted. His daughter Mimi was born during this time. Ed taught most of his years at Olive Street until he retired after 38 years. Ed loved teaching, but his passion was sharing his Polynesian culture with his students. At the end of every school year, his class would perform a Hawaiian show for the entire school with ukuleles, bamboo sticks, dancing and singing.
Many former students have expressed that participating in this show was the highlight of their grammar school experience.
Ed Mathias was a faithful member of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. He served tirelessly in positions of responsibility. He served as missionary for many years sharing his faith with others. He has a deep abiding love for the Savior and was happy to return home to his Heavenly Father and to be reunited with his wife Carrie and loved ones.
We welcome you to come celebrate the life of this beautiful man, Saturday morning March 8, 2014 at the Porterville Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Building at 850 E. Morton at 10:00am
In Lieu of donations for family or flowers, please send any contributions to the Porterville Adult Day Services (PADS) at 227 E. Oak Ave, Porterville, Ca 93257. Ed was up early every morning eager to go to PADS with his ukulele to share music and spread his aloha spirit with his friends. He loved everyone there.
Published in The Porterville Recorder on Mar. 8, 2014