Joseph Beck Matthews
1944 - 2020
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Joseph Beck Matthews, III died unexpectedly of natural causes on January 1, 2020 at his home in Durango, Colorado.

Joe was born to Julia Jones Matthews and John Alexander Matthews on January 28, 1944 in Fort Worth, Texas. He grew up in Abilene, attending Abilene public schools through 9th grade. Joe was a 1962 graduate of The Lawrenceville School in New Jersey. He attended Stanford University then later enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps as a reservist. After his honorable discharge, Joe resumed his education at the University of Texas, Texas Tech and the Colorado School of Mines, eventually becoming a hard rock geologist.

Joe's interests were varied and wide. He was an accomplished Flamenco guitarist, a miner, a rancher, a farmer, a real estate developer, and a builder of steam engines. He was a natural scholar and somewhat a nomad, never living in one place for very long. He had a wonderful sense of humor.

In recent years, Joe's interests turned to philanthropy. He created a foundation to assist adults with intellectual disabilities, provide educational scholarships, and specially adapted homes for disabled U.S. veterans. His foundation expanded its focus toward clean drinking water and healthcare in the developing nations of Southeast Asia and Africa.

Joe is survived by his son, Staff Sergeant William Matthews, his father, John Matthews, his siblings Julia Matthews Wilkinson, John A. Matthews, Jr., Kade Matthews, their spouses and children and his close friend, Sarah Comerford. He was predeceased by his mother, Julia Jones Matthews and his brother, William Watt Matthews.

Funeral and burial arrangements will be private.

Memorials may be made to SIGN Fracture Care International, 415 Hills Street, Suite B, Richland, Washington, 99354, or The Semper Fi Fund, 825 College Blvd. Suite 102, Oceanside, California 92057. Joseph Beck Matthews

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Published in The Durango Herald on Jan. 9, 2020.
Memories & Condolences
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6 entries
March 8, 2020
Joe Matthews I remember you well as a young girl riding 8-9 hours a day on horseback chasing cattle on Diamond Tail, my memories of you were of being very much the rock hound and you teaching me of the various types you had lying around and the excitement of the mining you did there. I remember how good you were to me and my father John Gonzales and especially the stewardship of the land you both had in common which made me appreciate you more in preservation of the beautiful badlands if New Mexico Diamond Tail Ranch. My memories will always remain in fondness and thankfulness for you taking the time out for this young girl who looked upon you just like I did my father, in awe may you Rest In Peace and be rewarded for what you did for people and the environment around you May your legacy live on! My condolences to all your family members. Liliana Gonzales-Pittman
Liliana Gonzales
January 30, 2020
So saddened by this sudden loss...Joe's legacy & his life leaves the world a much better place, a true gift by this fine man. Thank you Joe, much luv to Sarah.
Janis Lindblom
January 28, 2020
We are so very sorry to hear about Joe. We just found out today, January 28th, his birthday. We are heartbroken. Joe meant the world to us. Scott worked with Joe for many years on Diamond Tail Ranch and they just seemed to have a bond. Joe became like family. We looked forward to seeing Joe every time we were in Durango and anytime he was in NM. Sara, we send our love to you and all of Joe's family. You will always be with us in our hearts Joe.
Lynn and Scott Carl
January 17, 2020
So sorry for your loss. When Joe was my neighbor, on Rivercrest, I remember him showing me a steam engine he was building. He was just so excited to show all the parts, such a twinkle in his eye, and a smile on his face.
Karoleigh Armstrong
January 16, 2020
With great sadness and surprise comes this news of Joe. My heart goes out to family and Sarah as you all are faced with this loss of a fine man. Joe was a kind, good person who will be missed by all.
Lauren Hogan
January 11, 2020
So sad to read this news. My heart is with you Sarah and all his family. He lived a good life filled with adventure and good deeds. He made the world a better place. Rest in peace.
Lynne Sholler
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