Ray Mathews
Cunningham Funeral Home - Grove City
306 Bessemer Ave.
Grove City, PA
Ray Mathews, 86, of Marion Township, Harrisville, passed away Sunday evening, following a two-year illness.
Ray was born Feb. 26, 1929, in Dayton, Pa., to Paul and Flossie Hallman Kerr. Ray was raised by his aunt, Edna Mathews Hope. He married his high school sweetheart, Ruth M. Matthews on March 21, 1949.
He attended McKeesport Area High School, before moving to Clemson University. Ray was selected by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the seventh round of the 1951 NFL Draft and in 1952, he was the teams leading rusher with 315 yards on 66 carries. He led the Steelers in receiving in three straight seasons.
Ray played in 108 games with the Steelers and he also held the franchise record for the longest reception, 78 yards, and most touchdowns in a game, 4.
In 1978, he was inducted into the Clemson Athletic Hall of Fame; in 1979, he was inducted in the PA Sports Hall of Fame; and in 2007, Ray was named to the Pittsburgh Steelers Legends team.
Following retirement from professional football, he was an assistant coach for the Washington Redskins and the Calgary Stampeders. He was a teacher at Braddock High School and later worked in many different areas of employment to provide for his family.
Throughout his life one of his great loves was farming, especially raising horses. As a young man he spent most summers working on his uncle's farm in Dayton, Pa.
In 1978, Ray moved his family back to Western Pennsylvania, and he became a restaurant owner, when he purchased the Pines Restaurant in Springfield Township, now known as My Brothers Place, and he achieved his lifelong aspiration at the same time when he purchased the family farm in Marion Township.
Ray enjoyed his life, but mostly he enjoyed being with his family and close friends. He was a member of the Barkeyville United Methodist Church.
Survivors include, his wife, at home; five children, Catherine Wilson of Harrisville, Ray (Pam) Mathews Jr. of Branford, Conn., John (Mary) Mathews of Harrisville, Timothy L. (Shelley) Mathews of Mercer and Jenny (Mark) Pryor of Mercer; 10 grandchildren, Tabitha Wilson, Mathew Wilson, Bret Wilson, Myra Odenwaelder, Amanda Mock, Bobby Mathews, Raychelle Pedersen, Justine Ferguson, Luke Pryor and Logan "Joe" Pryor; and nine great-grandchildren.
His parents and one brother, Robert Kerr, preceded him in death.
MATHEWS - The family of Ray Mathews, who died Sunday, Dec. 20, 2015, will receive friends from 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday at the Cunningham Funeral Home, 306 Bessemer Ave., Grove City.
A private family funeral will be Wednesday at the funeral home.
Memorials in Ray's memory may be made to any organizations that involves Alzheimer's disease or the National FFA Organization.

Published by Butler Eagle on Dec. 24, 2015.
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Funeral services provided by:
Cunningham Funeral Home - Grove City
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9 Entries
Ray was a man of men. He was a great boss and had a great family which I love dearly. He will be greatly missed and I am happy to say I was part of having him put in the Hall of Fame for being a wonderful Steeler!!!
Gloria (Snow) Coates
March 7, 2016
I guess to most of Ray's family, this is out of the blue because when my family moved to Fl in 1946 we sorta lost touch with folks in Pa. Ray was my cousin, his Father Jay was my mothers, Hazel Mathews, brother. My middle name and that of my son is Jay. I remember him fondly and followed his football career proudly and just wanted his family to know that we are thinking of them and offer condolences from family in Clearwater, Fl. I saw that he had a gravesite reserved in Milton at the Mathews/Long cemetery when I visited there a few years ago.
Thomas Jay McAllister
March 4, 2016
Gloria (Snow) Coates
December 29, 2015
Lyssa Brown Kerr
December 29, 2015
Rick and I are so sad to hear of Ray's passing. What a great guy and a wonderful family! We grew to love his family and hold them in our prayers at this time.
Sandy Grossman
December 29, 2015
Judi O'maley
December 28, 2015
I have so many sweet memories of my Uncle Ray. Summers in Pennsylvania were a favorite for us all. Grand Dad and Uncle Ray used to send me to the fields to collect the gulf balls from the " golf ball tress" I genuinely believed this is where all those balls came from until the next time when I caught them hitting gulf balls off the old fire engine in the field! It's my best memory of my Grand Dad and Uncle Ray and how they laughed when I caught them they thought it was just too funny. Even though I'll miss my Uncle Ray I bet my Grand Dad is awfully glad to see him again. Great men reunited again.
Elicia Brown
December 28, 2015
My Uncle Ray loved to tease and joke, pull your leg and the wool over your eyes. You would think he was dead serious until you caught that twinkle in his eye, or sometimes my aunts big smile would give him away. He was larger than life and all of us kids were in awe of him. Sweet and gentle memories...and a few wild ones....
Lyssa Brown Kerr
December 28, 2015
Ray turned out to be a very good friend to us. We love him telling us about his Steeler days, he even helped get us Steeler tickets. He was one of the best. He will be missed.
Loyd and Pat Risch
December 24, 2015
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