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Emile H. "Hank" Mathis, Jr.

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Emile H. "Hank" Mathis, Jr. Obituary


Memories & Candles

“I did not learn of Emile's passing until today, in fact I left a message on his cell phone recently. Emile's bright spirit and kindness will live on...Read More »
1 of 14 | Posted by: Dr. Edward E. Diehl - Racine, WI

“Emile invited my husband and I, and another pair of relative, to his home for a dinner party. We were all interested in his beautiful home. I began...Read More »
2 of 14 | Posted by: Barbara Lundberg - Red Wing, MN

“Emile invited my husband and I, and another pair of relative, to his home for a dinner party. We were all interested in his beautiful home. I began...Read More »
3 of 14 | Posted by: Barbara Lundberg - Red Wing, MN

“I met Emile when I lived in Racine from 78 to 83. He quickly became an enjoyable and easy friend with whom to talk about downtown Racine strategies....Read More »
4 of 14 | Posted by: John Roinick - Sahuarita, AZ

“Emile was an incredible indivdiual, artist, and advocate for the community that he loved so very much. Emile will long be remembered as one of...Read More »
5 of 14 | Posted by: Dean Yohnk - Racine, WI

“Emile was a college friend of mine and we have seen each other off and on. We visited the shop when we lived in Milwaukee. He sent the most...Read More »
6 of 14 | Posted by: Pat Thomas - Minneapolis, MN

“It was a privilege to hear two presentations that Emile gave over the years, one last year at Racine Art Guild. I totally enjoyed his material and...Read More »
7 of 14 | Posted by: Mary Mollerskov - Racine, WI

“Emile was my neighbour when my daughter and I opened the store next to the gallery. We quickly developed a friendship which grew over the years. ...Read More »
8 of 14 | Posted by: Dorothy Ward - Racine, WI

“I have known Hank for more than 30 years since our days together on the board of Racine Urban Aesthetics. For more than a decade now he has been the...Read More »
9 of 14 | Posted by: Pat Hamilton - Silverthorne, CO

“Emile and I went to college together over 40 years ago. We more recently reconnected when he started working to establish scholarships and a major...Read More »
10 of 14 | Posted by: Barb and Steve Erickson - WI

“My friendship with Emile goes back to college days when we were both art majors and pursued various projects together. I recall many good times that...Read More »
11 of 14 | Posted by: Maynard Fossum - Chicago, IL

“Emile was so gracious and kind. Last Fall, he contributed his wonderful collection of West African Art to the inaugural art show in one of our new...Read More »
12 of 14 | Posted by: Kate Gillogly - Kenosha, WI

“It was my privilege to meet and get to know Emile and Ron. Emile's understanding and insight of art of many types and his determination to gift his...Read More »
13 of 14 | Posted by: Anne Panter - Milwaukee, WI

“My friendship with Emile began as a result of our mutual adoration of Airedales. We first really connected in 1993 at the UW Madison Veterinary...Read More »
14 of 14 | Posted by: Lorna George - Racine, WI


Racine – Emile H. "Hank" Mathis, Jr., 66, peacefully passed away at home on Sunday, July 15, 2012.
Emile was born in Superior, WI on February 25, 1946 to Emil and Anna (nee, Huberty) Mathis. Emile grew up in Superior attending St. Louis Grade School and graduating from Cathedral High School. Following graduation he moved to Racine in 1964 and attended Dominican College. He returned to Superior and completed his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at the University of Wisconsin-Superior in 1970. During that time he taught in the Sheboygan Public Schools from 1968 – 1969. Emile returned to Racine in 1970 and worked for LaPort Gallery and London Fine Art Gallery until 1972 at which time he opened Mathis Fine Art Gallery.
Emile was a very active participant in community fund raising for over forty years. He worked to revitalize Racine's downtown, servicing on the first board of the Downtown Racine Revitalization Corp., currently D.R.C. He was also a contributor to the Racine Art Museum (RAM), Prairie School, Racine Zoo and numerous other local charities. Over the years Emile endowed two scholarships at the University of Wisconsin-Superior.
Survivors include his domestic partner, Ron Dunnett; sister, Beverly Ann Spencer; and nephew, Ray Friedick. Emil is also survived by other relatives and many friends. He was preceded in death by his sister, Louise; brother, Ronald; and niece, Terese Ann Friedick.
A Memorial service for Emile will be held at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 2201 Northwestern Avenue, on Wednesday, July 18, 2012 at 7:30 p.m. Private inurnment will take place at Calvary Cemetery. Relatives and friends may meet with the Emile's family at the church on Wednesday evening from 4 until 7:30 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the UW-Superior Art Scholarship.