Verona - Harold Mathison, died peacefully at home with his wife by his side, on Friday, February 14, 2014, at the age of 81.
He was born on April 8, 1932 to Clifford and Anita (Tallard) Mathison in Madison.
Hal attended grade school at Hillcrest School, located 1 block west of Segoe Road on Mineral Point Road. It was a one room, one teacher, eight grade schoolhouse, with no running water or phones. Hal graduated high school from Madison West High School in 1951. He enjoyed football, and other sports, and was voted All City Tackle on Defense and was Center on Offense. He participated in "Major Touch Football" team championships for the city, and played with the Sergenians. Hal joined the U. S. Marine Corps from 1951-1953, serving 14 ½ months in Korea, attached to the 1st Marine Air Wing.
After returning from the service, Hal teamed up with his father to work in the family landscape nursery business. Hal continued the business after his father's death in 1968. During the "off seasons", Hal worked at Renchlers Floral Co., Dairy Equipment Manufacturing Co., and Harder Paper Co.
Hal married the love of his life, Shirley Holzwarth on August 26, 1961, and celebrated 52 years of marriage.
Being an outdoorsman was a joy for Hal. He enjoyed deer hunting in earlier days with his father and brother, Don, in Florence County, and later years with friends in Oneida and Vilas County. He enjoyed trips to the Boundary Waters with his brother-in-law, Howie Holzwarth. Hal made many snowmobile trips, including trips out west, with his wife and friends.
Hal and Shirley enjoyed time at their cottage in Vilas County, with all aspects to nature, wild life, and leisure life. He was pretty much on a first name basis in later years with the animals and trees surrounding the property - Hal was their lunch ticket! At home, Hal would ride on the mower almost every day from spring until the snow flies taking in all the fresh air and beauty of his land.
Hal was a member of several organizations including, Dane County Conservation, Wisconsin Nursery Members Association, Disabled Americans and Ducks Unlimited.
Hal is survived by his wife, Shirley; brother, Donald (Julie) Mathison; sisters-in-law, Donna Mathison and Darlene Holzwarth; brothers-in-law, Karl (Ruth) Holzwarth and Lloyd Holzwarth; nieces and nephews, Lynn (Bill) Gingher, Rick (Shelley) Mathison, David Mathison, Greg (Lisa) Mathison, Glen Mathison, Kim (Ron) Sperfslage, Pam Johnson and Heather Holzwarth. He was preceded in death by his parents; and a brother, Richard.
A gathering with hors d'oeuvres will be held from 4 until 7 p.m. on Wednesday, February 19, 2014 at CRESS FUNERAL HOME, 3610 Speedway Road, Madison.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to your favorite charity.
The family would like to thank all of his Doctors and staff who helped over the years and in his final moments, from Group Health Cooperative, UW Hospitals, Wisconsin Dialysis, Heartland Hospice, Comfort Keepers, and a dear sister-in-law, Darlene Holzwarth, who is Shirley's moral support; and special thanks to Dialysis Nurse Sharon Fox for 9 years of care.
Hal will be loved, missed, and remembered by his family and many friends.