- Harvey Mattingly
- Hometown (Last School)
- Bardstown, KY (High)
- September 26, 1911
Obituary – Harvey Winford Mattingly Sr., 89, Kentucky Standard (Bardstown)
Harvey Winford Mattingly Sr., 89, died Wednesday, April 4, 2001, in Tucker, Ga. He was born in Springfield on Sept. 26, 1911, and moved with his parents James Raphael and Melinda Grimes to Bardstown, where he attended Bardstown High School and excelled in football, basketball and baseball.
He continued playing the three major sports at the University of Kentucky, where he graduated and was the president of Kappa Sigma fraternity and IFC (Inter-Fraternity Council). He taught and coached at Beechwood High School before joining the U.S. Army and serving for five years with 3-1/2 years as a Captain on the front lines in the South Pacific where he was twice wounded and awarded several medals, including the Purple Heart with Oak Leaf Cluster and Bronze Star. After the war, he joined Prudential’s mortgage, loan and investment divisions, where he worked until he retired in Atlanta as the regional manger of the southeastern office. He was an elder in Clairmont Presbyterian Church in Atlanta for many years and held the highest office awarded to a layman.
Survivors include his wife of 62 years, Aline M. Mattingly; a son, Harvey “Bud” W. Mattingly Jr.; a daughter, Jane M. Price; and four grandchildren, all of Georgia.
The funeral was Saturday at Christ Church in Tucker, Ga., with a graveside service at 11 a.m. Monday in Bardstown City Cemetery with full military rites.
What ever happened to … ?
All-around athlete Harvey Mattingly
by Bill Medley, The Kentucky Standard August 3, 1978
It’s very doubtful anyone under 50 could tell you who Harvey Mattingly is. But for folks who were around Bardstown in the late 20’s and early 30’s, Harvey was a household word – at least when the talk was football, basketball or baseball.
Mattingly, they said, “was a natural athlete.” For four years, the husky 185-pound high schooler snapped center, swatted home runs, and pressed the roundball downcourt for teams at Bardstown High School.
He graduated in 1930, and went on to play all three sports the University of Kentucky (a feat which is almost unheard of today). Between 1931-32 he played for the varsity basketball team at UK, the second team of coach Adolph Rupp.
But an injury between his sophomore and junior years in college cut short his football and basketball playing days, though not his entire sports career. “Rafe” (a nickname picked up from his father) dropped out of sports until his senior year when he played as the regular catcher for UK’s baseball team.
Now retired and living in a suburb of Atlanta, Ga., Mattingly recalled how he was injured. “We were playing ball for the old Tom Moore Distillery team (the field at that time was located where Bardstown High School now stands, and there was an old wooden stadium on the site.) Anyway I went sliding into home, and the next thing you know I’m being in Norton’s Infirmiry with a broken collarbone and a separate should to boot.”
Actually, it was the second time Rafe has been injured. He broke his collarbone in pre-season football practice at Bardstown High in 1927, had it patched, and went on to play half of the games that year under an assumed name.
“My dad was gainst my playing after I was hurt, so we made up a name so he wouldn’t know,” Harvey recalled.
It wasn’t surprising that Mattingly’s first job after college was a teacher and coach at Park Hills Junior High in Covington. He lived in the northern Kentucky area for six years, and met, and married his wife, Aline Mildenberger, there. (The couple celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary in May.)
With the advent of World War II, Harvey Mattingly was called to service as a Reserve Officer. Whether it was fate or something else, while waiting to be transferred to Europe, the ship caught fire and burned in dock in New York. As a result, he was sent across country and departed for the Pacific. That coincidence brought him some of the most memorable experiences of his life.
Assigned as Company Commander, Co. E, of the 129th Infantry, Mattingly participated in the Allied recapturing of the islands of the Pacific. In November, 1943, he was attached to units which secured Bouganville in the Solomon Islands. During the skirmishing, Rafe was hit by shell fragments in the back. It earned him the Purple Heart.
Rejoining his unit, he participated in the initial assault in recapturing Manila in the Philippines under the command of Gen. MacArthur.
“I’ll never forget that,” he said chuckling. “General MacArthur wanted to be at the front of the line. But by exposing his position like that he almost go us all killed.” Nevertheless, seeing MacArthur in the Philippines was one of the real thrills of his life, he admits.
27 YEAR CAREER
Home from war, Harvey returned to the Cincinnati area and went to work for Prudential Insurance Company. He started out as a trainee, and eventually worked his way up through the ranks, taking jobs in Dayton, Columbus and Cleveland, Ohio, and Charlotte, N.C.
In 1964 he assumed the management of the Atlanta Production Office of Prudential, which was eventually expanded to cover most of the southeastern states. He retired in 1972, after 27 years with the company.
Later, he became associated with a friend as Executive Vice-president in charge of operation and finance of a contracting company in Atlanta, and retired from that post in 1975.
“I can recall my dad telling people he was looking for a job where he could go to work at 12, quit at 1:00 o’clock, and have an hour off for lunch,” Harvey said when asked about his retirement. “I think I’ve found that job, but it gets boring sometimes.”
His biggest passions nowadays are playing golf, arguing with the preacher, and enjoying his four grandchildren. (Harvey and his wife have a daughter Jane, and a son, Harvey Jr., who are both married and living in the Atlanta area no more than 20 miles from their parents.)
Though he never came back to Bardstown for any period of time after graduating from college, Harvey kept in touch with his friends here, and continues to visit almost yearly.
“It seems no matter whre you go, you run into people from Bardstown. When I was in the army stationed on Guadalcanal I ran into Freeman Carothers, and the late Duard Brumley. And Paul Keene was in Manila with us.”
“I think Bardstown will always be my home,” he says. “I’ll never forget playing basketball down in the opera house with ol “Obie” (Phil McCay), and Arch Cox McKay, or the time we rented a big Buick from Wilson Bros. and drove all the way to St. Mary’s in a snowstorm to play ball. What a night !”
As a kid who grew up without much money (his mother ran a boarding house while his dad was looking for that 12 to 1 job) Harvey learned to make the best of his talents on the athletic fields.
He used those talents to get a college education, and later a job as teacher-coach. And who knows, maybe those swift feet, and the endurance built up on the football field, helped him get just far enough away from a Japanese mortar shell in the Pacific.
Harvey’s sister-in-law, Mrs. Myrtle Mattingly, lives in Bardstown on Madison Avenue.