Melvin Earl Mattson

Melvin Earl Mattson

Male 1926 - 2010  (84 years)

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  • Name Melvin Earl Mattson 
    Born 06 Aug 1926  87 Church Street, Gardner, Worcester, Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Resided 1931  972 Morris Avenue, New York City, New York, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Resided 1933  2160 Webster Avenue, Bronx, New York, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Attended school 1939  Bronx High School of Science, 75 W 205th Street, Bronx, New York, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Resided 1941  2415 Creston Avenue, Bronx, New York, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Attended school 1943  New York University, New York City, New York, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Attended school 1944  United States Merchant Marine Academy, Kings Point, Nassau County, New York, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Attended school 1950  Georgetown University, Washington DC, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Attended school 1951  George Washington University, Washington DC, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Resided 1952  1230 N. Quinn Street, Arlington, Virginia, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Resided 1955  236 N Thomas Street, Arlington, Virginia, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Resided 1958  7417 Add Drive, Falls Church, Virginia, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Resided 1961  1115 Main Street, Webster, Day County, South Dakota, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Resided 1963  7417 Add Drive, Falls Church, Virginia, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Resided 2000  6577 Bullen Bluff Terrace, Gainesville, Prince William, Virginia, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Died 27 Sep 2010  6577 Bullen Bluff Terrace, Gainesville, Prince William, Virginia, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I2  Default | Swede Finns related to Melvin Earl Mattson 1926-2010
    Last Modified 22 Mar 2021 

    Father John Edward Mattson,   b. 20 Dec 1884, Malax, Finland Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 13 Aug 1947, Bronx, New York, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 62 years) 
    Mother Amanda Strom,   b. 16 Dec 1883, Malax, Finland Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 20 Oct 1973, Loma Linda, San Bernardino, California, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 89 years) 
    Married 22 May 1926  Gardner, Worcester, Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Photos
    House in Gardner, Massachusetts
    House in Gardner, Massachusetts
    House in which Mel Mattson was born, 1926
    Recordings
    Mattson family, from 1926 to 1947
    Mattson family, from 1926 to 1947
    Family ID F4  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Martha Joyce Wild,   b. 30 Mar 1929, Minneapolis, Hennepin, Minnesota, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 27 Nov 2004, 6577 Bullen Bluff Terrace, Gainesville, Prince William, Virginia, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 75 years) 
    Married 26 Jan 1952  Church of the Nativity, Washington DC, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Notes 
    • Martha Joyce Wild to Wed M. Mattson January 26

      Mr. and Mrs. Edward G. Wild of Osnabrock announce the engagement of their daughter, Martha Joyce, to Melvin Earl Mattson of Washington, D.C. Miss Wild has set January 26 as the date of her wedding which will take place in Washington.

      The bride-to-be graduated in 1950 from St. Benedict's college at St. Joseph, Minn., and has been employed at the National Catholic Welfare conference in Washington. Mr. Mattson is the son of Mrs. Amanda Mattson of Gardner, Mass., and is now attending the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown university in Washington, D.C.

      ===========================================

      Martha J. Wild of Osnabrock To Wed Jan. 26

      Mr. and Mrs. Edward G. Wild of Osnabrock announce the engagement and approaching marriage of their daughter, Martha Joyce, to Melvin Earl Mattson, son of Mrs. Amanda Mattson of Gardner, Mass.

      Miss Wild is a graduate of St. Benedict's college at St. Joseph, Minn. and has been employed with the National Catholic Welfare conference in Washington, D.C.

      Mr. Mattson is a lieutenant (junior grade) in the naval reserve. At present he is attending the school of foreign service at Georgetown university in Washington.

      The wedding is set for January 26 in the Church of the Nativity in Washington.

      =================================================

      Martha Joyce Wild Marries in East

      Martha Joyce Wild, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. E.G. Wild of Osnabrock, became the bride of Melvin Earl Mattson of Washington, D.C., Jan. 26 in the Church of Nativity in Washington. Rev. Sylvester M. Hoffman officiated with Richard Sinner of Casselton, a cousin of the bride and a theological student, assisting.

      Given in marriage by her brother, Ensign Robert W. Wild, the bride wore a white ballerina length lace dress and carried a bouquet of white camellias. Dorothy Wild of Osnabrock, the bride's sister, was her only attendant and wore pink taffeta. Richard S. Henderson attended the bridegroom.

      A reception at the bridegroom's home followed the ceremony. After a short trip, Mr. and Mrs. Mattson are at home in Arlington, Va.

      The bride is a graduate of St. Benedict's College in St. Joseph, Minn., and has been employed at the National Catholic Welfare Conference in Washington. Mr. Mattson is a graduate of the Merchant Marine academy in Kingspoint, N.Y., and is employed by the Navy Department. He also is attending the school of foreign service at Georgetown University.

      =====================================

      Martha Wild Engaged to Melvin Earl Mattson

      Mr. and Mrs. Edward G. Wild announce the approaching marriage of their daughter Martha Joyce, Washington, to Melvin Earl Mattson, son of Mrs. Amanda Mattson, Gardner, Mass.

      Miss Wild is a graduate of St. Benedict college, St. Joseph, Minn., and Mr. Mattson is a lieutenant jg. in the United States naval reserve. He served in Europe and the Mediterranean area in World War II. He is now attending Georgetown university, Washington.

      The wedding is planned for Jan. 26 in the Church of the Nativity, Washington.

      Miss Wild is a niece of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Daggett, 2143 Highland parkway, St. Paul; Dr. and Mrs. R.E. Wild, 1759 Ames place, St. Paul, and Mrs. F.H. Riley, Hampshire Arms hotel.

      ==============================================

      Joyce Wild and Earl Mattson Marry in Nation's Capital

      Martha Joyce Wild, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. E.G. Wild of Osnabrock exchanged her nuptial vows Saturday, January 26 with Melvin Earl Mattson of Washington, D.C., in the Church of Nativity in Washington, D.C.

      The 3 p.m. single ring ceremony was solemnized by Father Sylvester M. Hoffman at a nuptial mass. Among those witnessing the mass was Richard Sinner of Casselton, who is a cousin of the bride and a theology student.

      Background organ music was played by Mrs. Conrad Nix of Silver Springs, Md.

      Given in marriage by her brother, Ensign Robert W. Wild of Saunderstown, R.I., the bride was attired in a ballerina length dress of white lace. The dress was fashioned with a boat shaped neckline with bands of white satin to cuff the three-quarter length sleeves and form the belt. The shoulder length veil was held in place by a pearl tiara. Her jewelry, a gift of the bridegroom, was a single strand pearl necklace with matching earrings and bracelet.

      Her flowers were white camelias with white satin streamers. Dorothy Wild of Osnabrock, the bride's sister, was maid of honor and wore a dress of pink Taffeta of ballerina length, with matching bolero. She also wore a Juliette cap and carried pink camelias with pink ribbon streamers.

      Mrs. Amanda Mattson, mother of the bridegroom, wore a dark dress and her corsage was of pink roses.

      Richard S. Henderson attended the bridegroom. The bridegroom and his attendant each had a white carnation boutonniere.

      A reception was held following the ceremony at the bridegroom's apartment in Georgetown. This was attended by the relatives and intimate friends who witnessed the wedding.

      After their short honeymoon, Mr. and Mrs. Mattson have been at home at 1230 N. Quinn street in Arlington, Va.

      Among the out of town guests were the bridegroom's mother, Mrs. Amanda Mattson of Gardner, Mass., Dorothy Wild of Osnabrock, Ensign and Mrs. Robert W. Wild of Saunderstown, R.I., and Anne DeWitt of New York city, who is a cousin of the bride.

      The bridegroom, who is a lieutenant junior grade in the U.S. naval reserve, is a graduate of the Merchant Marine academy in Kingspoint, N.Y. At present he is employed by the navy department and is also attending the school of foreign service at Georgetown university.

      The bride graduated in 1950 from St. Benedict's college at St. Joseph, Minn., and has been employed at the National Catholic Welfare conference in Washington.

      Prior to her marriage Mrs. Mattson was honored at a kitchen shower held January 17. Hostesses were Dorothy Weiss, who was a classmate at St. Benedict's college; Margaret Cronin and Maryrose Smith.

      A luncheon was given in the bride-to-be's honor January 21 by her sister, Dorothy Wild. Both affairs were attended by close friends of the bride.
    Children 
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    Photos
    Note from Dorothy Wild to the Mattsons in 1956, shortly after the birth of Monica
    Note from Dorothy Wild to the Mattsons in 1956, shortly after the birth of Monica
    Found on the back of a letter from David Wild to his parents, probably part of a packet of letters in a family "round robin" that operated for many many years.

    Text of the note:

    Dear Mattsons --

    These letters are old but since they are still around I'll send them. Thanks again for the greetings. We saw "The King and I" and ate dinner out. But since I'm on an 800 calorie diet it isn't much fun -- just hope Thanksgiving doesn't get one all off for I intend to eat half way decently. Do hope the baby is good. Presume it will be baptized Sunday. We haven't heard her name . Greetings to you for Thanksgiving - and we hope you feel as good as possible.

    Love, Mother

    How do the little girls like the new sister?
    Letter from Ted Wild to the Mattson family in 1956 shortly after the birth of Monica
    Letter from Ted Wild to the Mattson family in 1956 shortly after the birth of Monica
    Monday a.m.

    My dear folks --

    Just a line this morning to check on our new grand-daughter. How are you all? By the time this arrives, you should be home again. Am sure you were quite disappointed when the little girl arrived, since you both wanted a boy. What will be will be. Do hope that all goes well for you and that things get back to normal. What was the reaction when the girls saw their new sister? Like all others, I suppose they were sort of dumbfounded.

    All is quiet on the western front. Nothing new. Mom feels fine, but her diet is quite hard to follow. Sort of hits the rest of us. Slows things up pretty much. Had a quiet day for our anniversary. Went to Mass. Afterwards, Susan went to the school to work with others and we came home for awhile. Mostly to see the Canadians off on their return. Later we went back to Langdon to a movie -- then ate up there and then home for a quiet evening. Next year we hope to do better, as it is another fifth year. Do you know it's four years already since we visited you folks. Doesn't time fly?

    Was just down and helped with the wash. Now, when I finish this, I will be going into Osna to do some mailing and some business. John took the kids this morning so we will have the trip this afternoon. Next week, Susan will start staying in, we have a good room lined up. Guess you perhaps know that Dorothy has asked us down for turkey.

    Hope that all goes swell for you and that the new girl is real good. Love and kisses for you all, Dad
    Letter from Dorothy Daggett Wild to the Mattson family in 1956, shortly after the birth of Monica
    Letter from Dorothy Daggett Wild to the Mattson family in 1956, shortly after the birth of Monica
    Tuesday, November 20

    Dear Mel, Joyce, Janice, Lori & Monica -

    Your announcement to Susan came yesterday. It is very evident that you expected and wanted a boy but I'm sure you will love this little one just the same. She was a good sized baby and I think tha name is lovely. It is out of the ordinary run of names, goes very nicely with Mattson too. I've always meant to ask if I could make you anything. I have a couple blankets Susan served and I'll send them very soon. Also one of those terry cloth sets I got for Christmas. Would you use or want any little short kimonos? I will make some if you say so. Just let me know.

    From the weather forecast, we are missing another storm. So many last year went south of us though we surely had more snow than we could manage. A warm day now would take all we've got. The telephone poles are set by here but no telling how long before the wire is strung and all ready.

    I want to let you know that we want to send baby dolls to the girls. Knowing Janice, she will want to do what you do with Monica so they will be dolls that can wet. It might be better if you say they are from Santa Claus just so Bob and Jane's little ones don't think we're cheating them. Just wanted to let you know to ease your mind about dolls for them. They will come direct from Daytons. We hope to have a card fairly often. Love, Mother
    Sales literature for the house purchased by Mel and Joyce Mattson in 1958.
    Sales literature for the house purchased by Mel and Joyce Mattson in 1958.
    Mel and Joyce and their family lived in this house (Mark III, featuring "Center Hall Plan") from 1958 until the 1990's, except for a 2 year excursion in Webster, South Dakota (1961-1963).
    House in Falls Church, Virginia
    House in Falls Church, Virginia
    7417 Add Drive in Falls Church. The Melvin Mattson family lived here from 1958 to 1998, except for a sojourn in South Dakota (1961-1963)
    Falls Church house, rear view
    Falls Church house, rear view
    7417 Add Drive, Falls Church house, rear view. The Melvin Mattson family lived here from 1958 to 1998, other than a sojourn in South Dakota (1961-1963).
    Webster, South Dakota house
    Webster, South Dakota house
    House at 1115 Main Street in Webster, where the Melvin Mattson family lived from 1961-1963
    Webster, South Dakota house
    Webster, South Dakota house
    House at 1115 Main Street in Webster, where the Melvin Mattson family lived from 1961-1963
    Letter from Bill Lillevig, math teacher, to Mel and Joyce Mattson, 1974
    Letter from Bill Lillevig, math teacher, to Mel and Joyce Mattson, 1974
    October 28, 1974
    Dear Mr. and Mrs. Mattson,
    When I started teaching some years ago, the report cards had places to put favorable comments on the students. Now we have numbers to record bad comments. What I am leading up to is that I now have my fourth Mattson in class and it is nice. All the girls that I have had have been good students and an asset to the class and the school. I have enjoyed the give and take over the years and though we have disagreed at times, we stopped and then went on. So you two are to be congratulated on having a nice family, be proud of them. You have a right too. As the years pass if any of them need a recommendation, please write will be glad to give one. Its children like yours that make teaching easy and enjoyable. My thanks.
    Luck Best wishes
    A.W. (Bill) Lillevig
    Last Modified 3 Oct 2010 
    Family ID F1  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 06 Aug 1926 - 87 Church Street, Gardner, Worcester, Massachusetts, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResided - 1931 - 972 Morris Avenue, New York City, New York, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResided - 1933 - 2160 Webster Avenue, Bronx, New York, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsAttended school - 1939 - Bronx High School of Science, 75 W 205th Street, Bronx, New York, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResided - 1941 - 2415 Creston Avenue, Bronx, New York, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsAttended school - 1943 - New York University, New York City, New York, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsAttended school - 1944 - United States Merchant Marine Academy, Kings Point, Nassau County, New York, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsAttended school - 1950 - Georgetown University, Washington DC, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsAttended school - 1951 - George Washington University, Washington DC, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResided - 1952 - 1230 N. Quinn Street, Arlington, Virginia, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 26 Jan 1952 - Church of the Nativity, Washington DC, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResided - 1955 - 236 N Thomas Street, Arlington, Virginia, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResided - 1958 - 7417 Add Drive, Falls Church, Virginia, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResided - 1961 - 1115 Main Street, Webster, Day County, South Dakota, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResided - 1963 - 7417 Add Drive, Falls Church, Virginia, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResided - 2000 - 6577 Bullen Bluff Terrace, Gainesville, Prince William, Virginia, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 27 Sep 2010 - 6577 Bullen Bluff Terrace, Gainesville, Prince William, Virginia, USA Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Photos
    Melvin Mattson about 1927
    Melvin Mattson about 1927
    Mel Mattson and his father, about 1928
    Mel Mattson and his father, about 1928
    Mel Mattson and his sister Ellen Strom
    Mel Mattson and his sister Ellen Strom
    Mattson family, about 1930
    Mattson family, about 1930
    John Edward Mattson, Amanda Strom Mattson, and young Melvin Earl Mattson
    Mel Mattson in light colored crown
    Mel Mattson in light colored crown
    John Mattson and son Mel Mattson, unknown date
    John Mattson and son Mel Mattson, unknown date
    Melvin Mattson, 1936
    Melvin Mattson, 1936
    Mel Mattson and friends on his 11th birthday.
    Mel Mattson and friends on his 11th birthday.
    The bicycle was a birthday gift. Mel is on the far right. Victor's son Larry is second from the left, in the back.
    At the 1939 World's Fair
    At the 1939 World's Fair
    from left: Signe Strom, Oren Strom, Mel Mattson, Victor Strom, and Edith Strom (Victor's wife)
    At least one living or private individual is linked to this item - Details withheld.
    Amanda Strom Mattson and family, around 1940
    Amanda Strom Mattson and family, around 1940
    From left: Amanda Strom Mattson, Signe Maki Strom, Larry Strom (Victor's son), Victor Strom, Melvin Mattson, John Edward Mattson, and Edith Strom (Victor's wife)
    Mel Mattson, 1941
    Mel Mattson, 1941
    Postcard from Amanda Mattson to her son Melvin Mattson in 1941
    Postcard from Amanda Mattson to her son Melvin Mattson in 1941
    Dear Melvin
    Hope you can tuck care of the house and be sure not to fool with matches and Fier be fearfull. I am fine hope you are the same.
    Love from Mother
    Mel Mattson
    Mel Mattson
    Mel Mattson
    Mel Mattson
    From the 1947 yearbook for the Merchant Marine Academy
    From the 1947 yearbook for the Merchant Marine Academy
    Melvin Mattson is on the far right
    Melvin Mattson, 1948
    Melvin Mattson, 1948
    Mel Mattson, about 1949
    Mel Mattson, about 1949
    Joyce Wild and Melvin Mattson, 1951
    Joyce Wild and Melvin Mattson, 1951
    Mel Mattson with unknown woman, 1951
    Mel Mattson with unknown woman, 1951
    Mel Mattson and Joyce Wild, 1951
    Mel Mattson and Joyce Wild, 1951
    Mel Mattson and Joyce Wild, 1952
    Mel Mattson and Joyce Wild, 1952
    At least one living or private individual is linked to this item - Details withheld.
    Melvin Mattson and Joyce Wild wedding
    Melvin Mattson and Joyce Wild wedding
    Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Mattson
    Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Mattson
    Melvin Mattson and Joyce Wild wedding
    Melvin Mattson and Joyce Wild wedding
    Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Mattson at the reception, in Melvin's apartment
    Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Mattson at the reception, in Melvin's apartment
    Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Mattson with their attendants Richard Henderson and Dorothy Wild
    Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Mattson with their attendants Richard Henderson and Dorothy Wild
    At least one living or private individual is linked to this item - Details withheld.
    Melvin and Joyce Mattson wedding 1952
    Melvin and Joyce Mattson wedding 1952
    From left: Amanda Strom, Melvin Mattson, Joyce Wild Mattson, Dorothy Wild, Jane and Bob Wild
    Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Mattson
    Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Mattson
    Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Mattson
    Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Mattson
    Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Mattson
    Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Mattson
    At least one living or private individual is linked to this item - Details withheld.
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, unknown date
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, unknown date
    Mel Mattson
    Mel Mattson
    Lecturing, unknown date
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, 1963
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, 1963
    Letter from Stewart Udall to Melvin Mattson, 1964
    Letter from Stewart Udall to Melvin Mattson, 1964
    Letter from Ambassador Parker T. Hart to Stewart Udall commending Melvin Mattson and others
    Letter from Ambassador Parker T. Hart to Stewart Udall commending Melvin Mattson and others
    Melvin Mattson, 1972
    Melvin Mattson, 1972
    Melvin E. Mattson, Citation for Meritorious Service, 1973
    Melvin E. Mattson, Citation for Meritorious Service, 1973
    signed by Rogers CB Morton, Secretary of the Interior
    Mel Mattson at work, 1973
    Mel Mattson at work, 1973
    "Congratulations Mel -- You are a great member of the OSW team. Pat O'Meara 1/22/73"

    OSW stands for Office of Saline Water at the Department of the Interior in Washington DC.
    Mel Mattson, unknown date
    Mel Mattson, unknown date
    "to a very productive engineer of the OSW team with warmest congratulations. Pat O'Meara"

    OSW stands for Office of Saline Water at the Department of the Interior in Washington DC.
    Mel Mattson, 1974
    Mel Mattson, 1974
    On the job at the Department of the Interior, Washington, D.C.
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, 1980
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, 1980
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, 1981
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, 1981
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, 1988
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, 1988
    Mel and Joyce Mattson on a Norwegian Cruise Line ship
    Mel and Joyce Mattson on a Norwegian Cruise Line ship
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, on a Norwegian Cruise Line ship
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, on a Norwegian Cruise Line ship
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, 1994
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, 1994
    On board the Queen Elizabeth II
    Mel Mattson, unknown date
    Mel Mattson, unknown date
    Probably on a cruise
    Mel and Joyce Mattson
    Mel and Joyce Mattson
    Melvin Mattson and Rae Jackson
    Melvin Mattson and Rae Jackson
    Melvin Mattson with his sister Ellen Strom, 2008
    Melvin Mattson with his sister Ellen Strom, 2008
    Melvin Mattson and Bob Wild, 2010
    Melvin Mattson and Bob Wild, 2010
    Presidential Memorial Certificate for Melvin Mattson
    Presidential Memorial Certificate for Melvin Mattson
    1962 letter to Melvin Mattson from his cousin Birgitta Branting in Finland
    1962 letter to Melvin Mattson from his cousin Birgitta Branting in Finland
    The letter is in a Swedish dialect known as Finlandssvenska. Translation:

    Good day to you Melvin,

    I will now write you a reply to your letter which Uncle Ivar received a time ago, he is now here with us in Pörtom and visiting.

    Here we have a beautiful autumn. We are all well. I hope you are too. Uncle Ivar did get the money without procuration, we shall thank you very much. We also send you the receipt.

    This is your cousin who writes these letters. My name is Birgitta and I'm Axels daughter.

    I'm sending you Tor-Eric's address, his wife knows English, if you like you write to him so we can hear how you are doing over there in America. The address is:

    Tor-Eric Branting Iraimiala 04 Mumame Juväskylä Finland.

    I hope you will find someone who can translate this letter for you.

    I don't know what to write more, I will then finish with many regards from Uncle Ivar and Uncle Axel with family.

    Regards to Amanda and your family.

    Best regards

    Birgitta
    1960 letter to Melvin Mattson from his cousin Ruth Vendlin in Vasa, Finland
    1960 letter to Melvin Mattson from his cousin Ruth Vendlin in Vasa, Finland
    Letter is in a Swedish dialect known as Finlandssvenska. Translation:

    Good day to all over there!

    A thousand thanks for the letter that we received a short time ago, it was fun that you wrote us and heard that you all are alive over there!

    My name is Ruth and I am Axel’s daughter (that is writing). I am married and live in Vasa, Finland. Axel is doing fairly well, but he has some problems with his eyes and Irene (my mother) is feeling a little better but has often been sick.

    Yes, you Melvin have nine cousins here in Pirtam but all have moved out (from their parents), so only my youngest sister, who is 16 years old lives at home with Mama and Papa. Four siblings are in Sweden and have been there many years and the others are around here in Finland.

    In Malax, you have also father’s brother (uncle) Ivar and his two daughters, who are married and have children. There (Malax) also lives, Manda, August’s wife, but he (August) died several years ago, maybe ten years ago. They (August and Manda) had five children, who are cousins to you. But they are all full-grown adults. All of your aunts are dead, so they no longer exist. Certainly there are relatives distantly related, but one can’t mention them all.

    Yes, you, that are for sure rich and have it good, can come some summer by airplane to Finland and bring your mother with you. You are so welcome, all of you, there is enough room for you here.

    Yes, the years go so quickly that one does not have time, it was just Christmas and soon summer will go by. We have had a beautiful summer, it has rained the last few days but it is good for the plants.

    Sofia Vesterberg, (cousin to your father) says hello to Manda.

    Health and happiness to you all and hello from all of us. Hope that you Melvin write an answer some time to us. It is so fun to keep the family (relatives) together.

    My address:
    Ruth Vendlin Axel Branting
    Vasa Brando Pirtam
    Gaddavägen 21 Vasa
    Finland Finland

    PS: Father’s brother (uncle) Axel is 65 years old and his wife, my mother, and is 60 years old.
    Fru Branting
    Malax Havras
    Vasa, Finland

    Headstones
    Melvin Earl and Martha Joyce Mattson headstone
    Melvin Earl and Martha Joyce Mattson headstone
    Plot: section 3 site 254

    Histories
    My Swedish ancestors
    My Swedish ancestors

    Recordings
    Melvin Mattson, from 1926-1939
    Melvin Mattson, from 1926-1939
    childhood through junior high school, 1939 Worlds Fair
    Melvin Mattson, from 1939 to 1943
    Melvin Mattson, from 1939 to 1943
    Bronx High School of Science, chess, friendship with Walter Brandt
    Melvin Mattson, from 1943 to 1946
    Melvin Mattson, from 1943 to 1946
    Kings Point, first trip to sea
    Melvin Mattson, from 1947 to 1948
    Melvin Mattson, from 1947 to 1948
    Trips on merchant ships
    Melvin Mattson, from 1948 to 1954
    Melvin Mattson, from 1948 to 1954
    Naval Reserve, Georgetown School of Foreign Service, George Washington University

    Videos
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, 1988
    Mel and Joyce Mattson, 1988
    Taken by Connie and Walter Brandt at their Long Island home. Walter and Mel were boyhood friends.
    Mel Mattson and Walter Brandt, 1988
    Mel Mattson and Walter Brandt, 1988

  • Notes 
    • 1930 census shows Edward Mattson household in Gardner, Massachusetts. 44 years old, occupation laborer, immigrated to the US in 1907. Household included his 46 year old wife Amanda Mattson, 3 year old son Melvin Mattson, 15 year old stepdaughter Ellen Strom, and 14 year old stepson Oren Strom.

      1940 US Census, Bronx, New York
      Household headed by Edward Mattson; 55 years old; 6th grade education; born in Finland; occupation porter at an apartment house; worked 48 hours during the week of March 24-30, 1940; annual income $1100; renter; monthly rent $25. Wife Manda Mattson, 56 years old; 5th grade education; born in Finland; occupation housework. Son Melvin Mattson, 13 years old, 8th grade education, born in Massachusetts. Step daughter Ellen Strom; 25 years old; single; completed high school; born in Massachusetts; occupation hairdresser at a beauty shop; worked 48 hours during the week of March 24-30, 1940; worked 26 weeks during 1939; annual income $400.

      Jan 1943 high school yearbook: MELVIN E. MATTSON "Mel", Chemistry Squad, Lunch Room Squad, Chess Club, Dramatic Club, Senior Jewelry Committee, Commentator.

      Jan 1943 -- Graduated from Bronx High School of Science. #26 out of a class of 260.

      1943 -- Worked at International Projector Company, earning $75/month.

      Sep 1943 -- Began attending evening school at NYU, eventually accumulating about 19 semester hours.

      Aug 1944 -- Signed up for Merchant Marine and began attending school at Kings Point.

      Late 1944 to June 1945 -- First trip to sea, about 6 months long, as an engineering cadet. Went from New York to Panama and spent New Years Eve in Panama. Also visited New Guinea, Ulithi, Aruba, and Hawaii.

      -- ------------------------------------------------------

      15 July 1945

      Dear Mom & Dad,

      I'm writing this letter now aboard the T.V. McAllister - Training ship. I still have another week aboard this ship sailing around the Sound. Might be able to get home next Saturday for a few hours if everything works out right. I've been stuck with the 8-12 Fireroom watch so the greatest amount of time I can stay away from the ship is 7 hours at a time. I'm feeling fine. I'm in charge of the Fireroom now (having all that sea experience you know) so all I do is take it easy & let the "Prelim" do all the work. Quite a racket too. However I will be glad when I get off & stay at the Academy regularly. I'll be able to get off every Saturday & Sunday then. I have to hurry to finish this letter because I'm going on watch in a few minutes. I just decided to write you these few lines to let you know I'm well & safe & everything is OK.

      Love,
      Melvin

      P.S. Give my regards to Oren, Signe & Faith.

      ----------------------------------------------

      Aug 1945 -- Resumed attending school at Kings Point. Departments at Kings Point included Nautical Science, Marine Engineering, Ship Management, and Naval Science.

      1946 Kings Point yearbook: MELVIN EARL MATTSON, Bronx, New York. Fourth Class -- Kings Point; Sea Duty -- S.S. Esso Buffalo, Standard Oil Co. of New Jersey; Service Ribbons -- Atlantic, Pacific; Academy Record -- Cadet Officer.

      20 Dec 1946 -- Graduated from Kings Point. Received 3rd assistant engineer license and commission as ensign in the Navy Reserve.

      Jan/Feb 1947 -- Traveled to Piraeus, Greece and Odessa,Russia as Junior 3rd Assistant Engineer on a "Victory Ship" (cargo ship).

      14 Mar 1947
      Arrived in New York from the port of Gibraltar as a crew member on the Terre Haute Victory. Position Jr. 3rd Asst, Race Finnish, 20 years old, Height 5-11, weight 165

      1947 -- Trip to Italy and back. Trip to North Africa and back as 3rd assistant engineer. A second trip to Italy and back.

      1 Apr 1948
      American ship S.S. Cape San Martin arrived in the port of New York from the port of Valaga, Spain. 22 year old American Melvin E. Mattson appeared on the list of seamen who signed on at this port. The ship was expected to sail on April 5, with its next stop Philadelphia.

      Spring to summer 1948 -- Long trip on a small commercial merchant marine ship as 2nd assistant engineer. Visited Panama, Hawaii, the Philippines, Sumatra, Saigon and Burma, among other places.

      Summer 1948 -- Activated commission as an ensign in the Navy Reserve.

      12 Aug 1948
      Arrived in Honolulu from port of Hong Kong on the Cape San Martin. Melvin Earl Mattson, length of service at sea 4 years, 2nd assistant engineer, race Finnish, nationality U.S., 5 ft 11 inches, 165 pounds. Scar, 4th and 5th, right hand.

      (ed. note: The description of the scar was under a column titled "Physical marks, peculiarities or disease". Interesting that they didn't mention his lack of fingernails! I never noticed that he had scars on his fingers.)

      Nov 1948 -- On active duty, U.S. Navy, Lieutenant (j.g.). Boiler Division Officer, U.S.S. Juneau.

      Winter 1948-1949 -- Spent time on naval base outside of Seattle.

      1949 -- In the Mediterranean, Caribbean, and near Greenland, among other places, on naval maneuvers. His ship was a support ship for aircraft carriers.

      1950 -- Spent time in Japan. In Japan when the Korean War started.

      Aug 1950 -- Resigned navy commission in order to return to school.

      --------------------------------------------------------

      Letter postmarked 14 Dec 1950 in Lenox, Mass
      Addressed to Mr. Melvin E. Mattson, c/o Moore, 1579 44th St. NW, Washington DC.

      Dear Mel

      Once again, after promising you I'd write -- have wanted nigh on six weeks to do so -- But for the happenings.

      We have a 4 room duplex in Lenox Mass. Its on highway 20 & just 6 mi south of Pittsfield. Its in the heart of the Berkshires & really a swell place. Theres always a standing invitation for you Mel & we hope that you can at least spend a weekend with us soon. She's a good cook & you should sample it -- guarantee that you'll come back for more. Yep, we've got a living room & kitchen downstairs and 2 bedrooms & a bath upstairs. This married life is the best -- no kiddin -- you ought to try it sometime.

      Oh yes, we have an addition to the family - a dalmatian puppy. Got him today & he's got quite a personality. We call him Chipper.

      Lenox is set up fine for me. I get home every night for 8 weeks and then leave for one week & take Martha with me up to Maine for the week.

      We're going to be down at Martha's mothers for the holidays. If you get a chance, write and let me know where you'll be. If you are in NYC give me a ring at Kings Park 4523 & if you're up in Gardner, call me at my home at Lenox 693. We live on Walker St if you are in the neighborhood. Its called Hampton Terrace.

      Best of luck Mel & I do hope we get to see you over the holidays or around New Years -- Xmas at Kings Park and New Years at Lenox for us.

      See you soon I hope.

      The Best
      Walt & Martha

      -----------------------------------------

      1950-1951 -- Attended Georgetown School of Foreign Service at night school while working at the Navy Department.

      1951-1954 -- Worked at Bureau of Ships, U.S. Navy Department as Materials Estimator. Prepared engineering estimates of raw and semi-finished materials needed for fabrication of all main and auxiliary propulsion machinery components as used on mobilization naval combatant ships.

      1951 -- Began attending George Washington University at night school.

      26 Jan 1952 -- Married Martha Joyce Wild

      Jun 1954 -- Received Bachelors degree in mathematics from George Washington University.

      1954-1960 -- Worked at Bureau of Ships, U.S. Navy Department as Marine Engineer. Specialized in Naval shipboard steam generators, heat exchangers and distillation desalting equipment. Administered R&D projects on heat transfer conducted at the Naval Boiler and Turbine Laboratory.

      ============================================


    • 1960-1963 -- Worked at Office of Saline Water, Department of the Interior as Mechanical Engineer. Served as OSW field engineer at Webster, South Dakota during construction and operational acceptance testing of an experimental 250,000 gallons per day brackish water electrodialysis desalting demonstration plant. Responsible for all field inspection during construction. Supervised developmental testing to improve process economics and operational reliability.

      1962-63 -- M.E. Mattson and R.M. Fuller, "A Study of Materials of Construction in Distillation Plants", Office of Saline Water R&D Report No. 163

      1963-1978 -- Worked at Office of Saline Water, Department of the Interior as General Engineer. Responsible for the engineering and development, design and construction and laboratory and field evaluation testing of reverse osmosis membrane plants. Technical consultant to the United Nations on large scale electrodialysis desalting within Israel. Consultant to the Government of Saudi Arabia on desalting process selection.

      June 1964 -- M.E. Mattson et. al., "Preliminary Appraisal Report on Combination Sea Water Desalting and Electric Power Plant for Jidda, Saudi Arabia", prepared for the Government of Saudi Arabia by the United States Department of the Interior

      May 1965 -- M.E. Mattson, J.O. Roberts and L.R. Swarner, "Report on Proposed Borg El-Arab (Sidi Kreir) Project in the United Arab Republic", prepared for the Government of the United Arab Republic under the Auspices of the United States Department of State.

      October 1965 -- M.E. Mattson et. al., "Determining the Costs of an Electrodialysis Desalination Plant by Parametric Equations", Proceedings of the First International Symposium on Water Desalination, Washington, DC, October 3-9.

      May 1969 -- M.E. Mattson, J.D. Ellingboe, and A.F. Pendleton, "Water Resources Development on Persian Gulf - Gulf of Oman Coast of Iran", Prepared for the Ministry of Water and Power, Government of Iran under the Auspices of the Office of Water for Peace, United States Department of State.

      1974 -- M.E. Mattson, "Brackish Water in Membrane Process - Quality Limitations and Economics", Desalination Operations, Farleigh Dickenson University, St. Croix, V.I., December 9-13.

      April 1975 -- M.E. Mattson, "Membrane Desalting Gets Big Push", Water and Waste Engineering, pp. 48-52.

      1978-1982 -- Worked at Office of Water Research and Technology, Department of the Interior as Chief, Membrane Processes Technology Development. Directed all R&D activity related to membrane process technology for both brackish water and seawater desalination.

      1979 -- M.E. Mattson, "Significant Developments in Membrane Desalination", Desalination, Volume 28, pp. 207-223.

      1979 -- M.E. Mattson and J.E. Lundstrom, "New Developments in Brackish Water Desalting by Electrodialysis", Proceedings, Seventh Annual Conference of the National Water Supply Improvement Association, September 16-20, New Orleans, Louisiana.

      1980 -- M.E. Mattson and E.P. Easton Jr., "Office of Water Research and Technology Research and Development Program on Energy Recovery Systems", Proceedings, Eighth Annual Conference of the National Water Supply Improvement Association, July 6, 1980, San Francisco, California.

      1981 -- M.E. Mattson and M. Lew, "Future Trends in Membrane Desalination", Proceedings, Ninth Annual Conference of the National Water Supply Improvement Association, May 31 - June 4, 1981, Washington, DC.

      1982-1984 -- Worked at Bureau of Reclamation, Department of the Interior as Senior Staff Assistant for Saline Water Conversion R&D

      1982 -- M.E. Mattson and M. Lew, "Recent Advances in Reverse Osmosis and Electrodialysis Membrane Desalting Technology", Desalination, Volume 41, pp. 1-24

      1984-85 -- Worked at FilmTec Corporation as East Coast technical representative.

      =======================================================



    • Press Release from FilmTec Corporation, 7200 Ohms Lane, Minneapolis, Minnesota, 10 April 1984:

      Roy E. Larson, Vice President of Minneapolis-based FilmTec Corporation, announced today that Melvin E. Mattson has joined FilmTec as Eastern Region Marketing Manager. "We are very pleased to find a man of Mattson's stature and experience," said Larson. "He has played a key role in the development and commercialization of desalination technologies. His experience spans the history of reverse osmosis, and covers every aspect of membrane development and systems engineering."

      Mattson will establish FilmTec's Eastern Regional Office in McLean, Virginia. "A particular focus of the Eastern Office will be to develop the military market for our membranes, for both the U.S. navy and the U.S. Army's Mobility Equipment R&D Command, at Ft. Belvoir, Virginia," Larson said. "Our new office will also work with East Coast manufacturers and engineering firms in order to bring FilmTec's substantial research, engineering, and marketing resources closer to our customers."

      Mattson has more than 24 years of experience in desalination activities at the Department of the Interior. Most recently he directed the research and development activity for advancing desalination technology for membrane and thermal processes, for the Office of Water Research, Bureau of Reclamation. Prior to that, he developed and implemented the research and development program in reverse osmosis and electrodialysis membrane technologies for the Office of Water Research and Technology. He has been a consultant to the Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the United Nations, and several Middle East countries on membrane desalination technologies, and has authored numerous papers on the subject.

      FilmTec's Eastern Regional Office is now open for business at:

      7927 Jones Branch Drive
      McLean, Virginia 22102 U.S.A.

      FilmTec Corporation manufactures reverse osmosis membranes and elements for the desalination of seawater and brackish water and for industrial and other applications.

      ==========================================

      Letters from his co-workers when he retired from government service in May 1984:

      Dear Mr. Mattson:
      Congratulations upon your retirement after 34 years of Federal service, 24 of them with the Department of the Interior. During your service with the Office of Saline Water, the office of Water Research and Technology, and more recently with the Bureau of Reclamation, you have made a major contribution to advancing desalination technology for membrane and thermal processes. We are most grateful for your outstanding and devoted Federal service and extend our best wishes for a long and enjoyable retirement.
      Sincerely yours,
      Robert A. Olson

      ----------------------------------

      Dear Mel:
      Congratulations and best wishes upon your retirement. It just is not the same without you around the office. However, the day does come when we need to turn to other things and a more leisurely pace.

      I want to express my deep appreciation for your valuable assistance to me in integrating the water research functions into the Bureau of Reclamation. I developed a great respect for your judgment, competence, and broad experience, particularly in the area of saline water conversion research and development. It has been a great personal privilege and pleasure for me to become acquainted with you and to work with you. You have made a major contribution to solving many of our national water problems through advancing desalination technology and you are leaving a legacy in which you can take great pride.

      I also want to wish you much success in your new position with the Film Tec Corporation. It looks like a great opportunity.

      Keep in touch.

      Sincerely yours,
      Aldon D. Nielsen

      --------------------------------------------

      To: Whom it May Concern (WiMC)
      Subj: Mel Mattson

      I trust addressing this testimonial to WiMC is more credulous than simply addressing a letter to Mel, the unflappable OSW aqua crat. Mel's capacity for getting results from "the system" (and surviving the Channa years) is mirrored in his progeny. Anyone who can raise nine(?) children and successfully launch them on their way this day and age, no doubt, can master the frustration of working within the constraint of a zero based budget for extended periods. At OSW, Mattson got things done with a low-keyed tenacity.

      I consider him an excellent boss, who was confident of his own capabilities and thus readily encouraged technical initiative and creativity in his staff. He supported the best in others. Additionally, he was quite personable and reflected a literary bent (from reading the New Yorker or an equivalent during his daily bus commutes to OSW).

      I can still vividly recall Washington in the Spring a la Mattson -- it consisted of a noon-time stroll around the White House grounds, with a "Mr. Softy" in hand, observing the swarm of tourists and the occasional kook. Now I understand you see lots of kooks, an occasional tourist and no Mel Mattson.

      Here's wishing luck to that "Mr. Softy" lover wherever he may be.

      Fred E. Witmer

      ----------------------------------

      Dear Mr. Mattson:

      The past year has been a fortunate one for me in making your acquaintance. The experiences of Roswell, Wrightsville Beach, and you will stay embedded in my head for life. I enjoyed listening to your stories on how you came in second place in the running competition and the unique way you spoke about your 7 children. (daughter no. 5, daughter no. 1, etc.)

      Mr. Mattson, you are one of the good guys. Best wishes to you in your retirement and I hope you find fulfillment in your new position at FilmTec.

      Sincerely yours,
      Barbara J. Brown
      Clerk-Typist

      ----------------------------------

      Dear Mel:

      On the occasion of your retirement, I consider it only appropriate that I take a moment to consider all of those great qualities which you set as an example for the rest of us to follow:

      1. Your neat and tidy office with everything in its place. (the floor, window sills, table tops, file tops, etc.)

      2. Your uncanny way of always having the file or report we needed. (even if they were lost)

      3. The timely manner in which you carried out your supervisory duties. (waiting until the last possible moment)

      4. The clear and articulate manner in which you provided us with verbal instructions. (mutters & mumbles reached a new level of meaning)

      We who have known you so long will miss these unique skills. We know that FilmTec will come to appreciate you just as we did once they figure out what you are doing.

      Seriously, let me say that our friendship and support over our years in OSW, OWRT, and finally in the Bureau have been of great value to me and will be missed by us all. I know that your years in retirement will be of benefit to you and your technical skills can only enhance FilmTec.

      Best of luck in your retirement and now that you have more time, I'll throw in some free golf lessons.

      Roby

      -----------------------------------

      Dear Mel,

      There is a niche in my permanent memory bank which records that Mel Mattson is one of those too uncommon, talented and dedicated old pro's who always gave to his civil service position more than was required, who willingly took on and accomplished the most difficult if not impossible assignments, and who was frequently sought out by associates for his wise counsel and advice. In a way, Mel, I was disheartened to learn of your retirement from the Bureau because, to me, it seemed to signal the end of an era in Federal water resources research efforts wherein much was accomplished by a rare, relatively small group of insightful people of which you were certainly a forceful member.

      It's good to know that you plan to remain active in the desalting field, if not directly for the Government then at least indirectly through private enterprise. The expertise that is yours is a valuable commodity that should not become dormant.

      My cordial good wishes go to you, Mel, and that includes a happy, healthful and productive future.

      Sincerely,
      Bill Koop

      ----------------------------------------

      Dear Mel:

      Many years have past since we first met and shared an office. I remember it well, August 31, 1967, my first day in the Office of Saline Water. Ever since you have been a teacher, co-worker, supervisor, and most of all, a friend. Many scientists have come and gone, but your departure will surely be missed when and if Water Resources Research Program is reinstated. Your knowledge and expertise in the membrane technology cannot be replaced and FilmTec is very fortunate to have you on their staff.

      Congratulations on your retirement and wish you success in your new career.

      Sincerely yours,
      Melvin Lew
      Tech. Development Specialist

      -----------------------------------

      Dear Mel:

      You are at that time we all look forward to with reservations. Is it good to be old enough to retire or better to be too young?

      I have enjoyed my association with you over the past 20 years both as fellow employee and with you as my supervisor. Your assistance and advice during this time I appreciate, and I hope that if I can ever be of assistance to you, will will let me know.

      The Office of Water Research and its personnel will miss you, but I know you will be happy and enjoy your new job. Don't forget those of us who are remaining behind to continue the battle.

      I hope the future will bring us in contact again. Enjoy yourself and keep in touch.

      Best wishes to you and your family.

      Sincerely,
      John R. Newton

      --------------------------------------

      Dear Mel:

      Congratulations on your retirement. I'm sorry that I won't be able to attend your luncheon as I will be attending the Federal Executive Institute in Charlottesville, Virginia, during that time. However, I would like to say that I have enjoyed being associated with you here at Interior. Especially during our OWRT days, I appreciated your assistance and support in helping me understand desalting technology. I particularly appreciated your support when many questions would arise in the award of desalting research contracts and their relation to development. You were always available when I had a question.

      Have a good time in retirement. Enjoy yourself and if I can be of any assistance, please let me know.

      Sincerely,
      Jim
      James S. Burton
      Special Assistant - Water Research Programs

      ------------------------------------

      Dear Mel:

      Congratulations to you on your retirement after 34 years of Federal service. You have served your country well and made a genuine contribution in advancing desalting technology. Congratulations also to FilmTec on getting an outstanding Manager for its Eastern Regional Office - they got a class man for a class outfit, and I see nothing but success in your mutual future.

      We all wish you every success in your FilmTec career, and every happiness in your richly deserved retirement. We hope and expect to continue contact and association on both a personal and professional basis.

      Best wishes for a bright, rewarding, and relaxed future for you and Joyce and your beautiful family.

      Best regards as always,

      Sincerely,

      Sidney Johnson

      --------------------------------------

      Dear Mel,

      Congratulations! You made it! Here's wishing you the best of happiness and luck in your retirement years.

      Our association and friendship goes back quite a few years to the "old days" at OSW. Although we were in different groups in those days, I remember you as the "E D man". If you want to know anything about "E D", ask Mel Mattson was the word as I recall.

      When I returned to the desalination business at OWRT, you were a great help to me. I soon learned that I could depend on you for answers to many questions I had on RO and desalination in general. You were always cooperative and willing to spend time discussing problems with me. Your technical knowledge and experience was such that you usually had answers on the tip of your tongue. If not you could always reach back and recall where you had read about the subject and provide a reference to some report or technical article.

      Aside from the technical side, I regard you as a personal friend enjoying lunches together and walking past the White House to see what protests and marches were in progress.

      As a fairly new retiree, I can tell you that it can be most enjoyable. I don't know what plans you have but whatever they may be, again I wish you the best.

      Sincerely,
      Lee Kindley

      -----------------------------------

      ed. note: "E D" = electrodialysis and "R O" = reverse osmosis

      -----------------------------------

      To Mel Mattson, ex of ex-OSW & ex-OWRT

      Best wishes for many productive and rewarding years in your new career in the big time. the few who remain will likely envy your opportunity, yet, you've earned it!

      Our interaction was limited, Mel, but always enjoyable for me. You represented a stabilizing element in a turbulent period. Perhaps some of your common sense approach to program management will remain.

      Good luck,
      Frank Carson


      ============================================================


    • Obituary, from Pierce Funeral Home website:

      MELVIN E. MATTSON, a resident of Falls Church, Virginia for over 40 years, died at his home in Gainesville, Virginia Monday, September 27, 2010 after a lengthy illness.

      He was born in 1926 to Swedish immigrants in Gardner, Massachusetts. The family moved to New York City, and he graduated from the Bronx High School of Science in 1943, number 26 out of a class of 260. He went on to attend the Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, New York. His first trip to sea was in 1945 as an engineering cadet and, over the next few years, he made several more trips to sea as an assistant engineer on merchant ships. In 1948, he activated his commission as an ensign in the Navy Reserve and went on active duty as a division officer on the U.S.S. Juneau.

      He left the navy in 1950, married Joyce Wild in 1952, and received a Bachelor's degree in mathematics from George Washington University in 1954. In 1960, he began working at the Department of the Interior, where he became an expert on water desalination and reverse osmosis. He did a lot of job-related traveling throughout his entire career and retired from the government in 1984. For many years afterwards, he continued to work part time as a tax preparer for H and R Block, and later as a volunteer tax preparer through AARP. He was a dedicated runner since the 1970's and was regularly ranked as one of the top runners in his age group by the Washington Running Report.

      He was preceded in death by his wife Joyce in 2004. He is survived by a sister, seven children, 13 grandchildren and two great grandchildren.

      The family will receive friends from 3:00-4:00 P.M. Thursday, September 30, 2010 at Pierce Funeral Home, 9609 Center Street, Manassas, where funeral services will be held 4:00 P.M. Thursday. Interment will be private.

      In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Capital Hospice, 10530 Linden Lake Plaza, Suite 200, Manassas, Virginia 20109-6434 in loving memory of Melvin E. Mattson

      Condolences may be sent to www.piercefh.com.

      =========================================================


      Eulogy delivered by his son Mark Mattson, 30 Sep 2010:

      Hello. While I'm pleased to see all of you, I'd like to extend a special welcome to all of Dad's friends and acquaintances who were able to come.

      I think I was asked to deliver the eulogy because I was the only one Dad didn't have to refer to by number. And I think that this will be boring for you and cathartic for me. Please forgive me in advance for any lapses. I will also ask forgiveness for being inadequate to the challenge of eulogizing Dad. On the other hand, who is?

      As a child, I saw Dad as somewhat sphinx-like, meaning it took a long time for me to know him as a person. In several ways, I'm not sure I ever got to know him that well. I've come to think of that way of someone keeping close to oneself as being "Scandinavian", which Dad certainly was in the literal sense. He came from a long line of people who clung strongly to a Swedish identity despite finding themselves in Finland, kind of like the Quebecois in Canada or North Dakotans in Virginia.

      As a child, he recognized he was dealt a good hand in terms of intelligence. He had an abiding passion for science and was fascinated by the 1939 World's Fair in New York City with its "World of Tomorrow" (that's why we included a picture of it in the photograph displays). During his school career he skipped two grades and graduated from the Bronx High School of Science at age 16 in the top 10% of his class.

      He went to sea towards the end of World War II in the Merchant Marines and later in the U.S. Navy. Those were deeply influential experiences for him, but this was something I only came to recognize much later in Dad's life. He visited many ports of call and undoubtedly felt his personal horizons and opportunities expand. All the cruises he took with Mom and Rae in his later years reinforced his love of the sea and brought back those memories.

      In the Merchant Marines, in the Navy, and later in the Federal Government, Dad was a paragon of hard work. There's a notebook full of letters from co-workers and bosses who praise him for his innovations, his leadership, and the example he set for others. He was the complete antithesis to the cultural stereotype of the government worker. He entered a well-deserved semi-retirement at age 58.

      I'm going to insert a brief story here. In the very beginning of the 60's, Dad's job took him and his family to Webster, South Dakota. A group of engineers from Japan were sent to observe. Remember that this was only about 16 years after Japan was the bitter enemy of the United States, only 20 years after Pearl Harbor. It's clear that the members of this contingent faced barely concealed -- and maybe not so concealed -- hostility during their travels in the United States. Not with Dad. Dad treated with them with courtesy and friendliness. No matter that Dad served in the Pacific during the war. The leader of the Japanese contingent was so taken with Dad that he kept in touch with our family for a long time. Even 30 years later, when he learned that I was staying in Japan doing research, he tried to arrange to meet me though it was, unfortunately, too close to my departure for anything to happen. I'm bringing this story up because I think it's particularly remarkable. Anyone who knew Dad knew he had some . . . quirks, if you'll forgive me for not being blunt. But while he was able to recognize his gifts, he was also able to recognize his shortcomings and he was able to adjust for them. If more people could do that, I think this world would be a much better place.

      After retirement, he wasn't content to just putter around the house. After a few years as a consultant with FilmTec, he discovered that he shared a passion with Mom: taxes. Following Mom's lead, he took tax preparation courses from H&R Block and worked part-time for them and other such firms for quite a few years. Into his 80's, he did tax preparation pro bono for his fellow senior citizens through the AARP.

      Another of Dad's great passions in retirement started even back when he still worked with the government: running. Neighbors calling in condolences have commented that they remember Dad for all the running they saw him do. He regularly competed in races and was a real disciple, urging his children and who knows how many others to take it up. Right now, we even have Dad outfitted with a pair of running shoes. The endurance and strength he built up from all those years of exercise showed during his illness. I think everyone commented on how well he was doing "considering what he was going through". In his very last days, all of us were a little amazed at how strong his heart sounded and how consistently it kept beating.

      To this point, I have very unsubtly failed to really mention anything about his family life as a father and husband. He married my mother in 1952. This time, I'll be blunt and say I am at a loss to fully explain the dynamic between Mom and Dad. They genuinely loved each other and they genuinely enjoyed each other's company, and they were role models for all of us in how to have a successful marriage. That's enough for me.

      I know more about the dynamic between Dad and his children. Heck, I can claim some firsthand experience. However, it's only "some" because with seven children Dad had to spend lots of time at work. Aside from the usual 8 to 4, which required him to be ready to leave by 7 and not return home before 5, he was frequently in the office on Saturdays and frequently traveling. But, as I'll discuss, his influence was still very apparent.

      With Dad's death, my sisters and I are now orphaned, thrust out into the tempest-tossed world to fend for ourselves. Yet this scene isn't Dickensian, in fact it's not even the least bit tragic. That's not just because of our ages, ranging from . . . well, let's just say we've all reached middle-age. In large part, it is not tragic because of what both Mom and Dad instilled within each of us.

      Mom and Dad placed so much emphasis on the importance of education. It showed in us children. We all have a bachelor's, 3 of us have a master's and one of us has a PhD. As if that weren't enough, all of us were able to get our undergraduate degrees and leave college debt-free. They also emphasized the importance of hard work through example and encouragement.

      I have to point out a fairly remarkable demographic among Dad's children. One of the significant national initiatives in education in the United States is to increase the number of students majoring in the so-called "STEM" disciplines: Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Compared to countries like India and China, the number of STEM majors in this country is a small fraction. Women and minorities are *woefully* under-represented. And this is in the first decade of the 21st century. Consider how even more underwhelming the representation was 30 and 40 years ago. Yet take a look at Dad's daughters -- 2/3 of them got degrees in one of the STEM disciplines. If we could bottle whatever it was that Dad did, we could easily keep the United States at the forefront of scientific and mathematic innovation for the next half-century or more.

      All of us are productive citizens. All of us are taxpayers. All of us follow our parents' example of serving in our community. All of us do well at our jobs. All of us have married some very naïve and/or strange people. And all of us are parents.

      Dad's grandchildren were a source of pride for him. Their accomplishments include an ever-increasing list of academic credentials. 3 of them have completed double-majors with a fourth in the works. There are another 3 bachelor's and a fourth one almost completed -- and that with a minor. There are 3 master's degrees among the crowd. And there are others on the way who are already showing a great deal of promise in school: straight A's, Gifted & Talented, you name it.

      If it sounds like I'm bragging, well . . . I *am*. Dad once took me aside and told me that you could tell how good a parent was by seeing how the children raised *their* own children. It illustrates how proud Dad was of his children and his grandchildren and, in turn, of himself. And so yes, of course I'm bragging -- I'm bragging about my father. Thank you.
    • ==============================================

      Eulogy delivered by his daughter Janice Gallant at his memorial service in 2011

      Melvin grew up in the Bronx and graduated from the Bronx High School of Science in 1943. After graduation, he got a job at the International Projector Company, earning $75 per month. In the fall he started taking evening classes at New York University; his stated major was physics.

      Melvin turned 18 in the summer of 1944. With an eye to continuing his education, he signed up for a program at the Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point on Long Island. This program entailed spending 4 months at the Academy, followed by eight months at sea, and then another 15 months at the Academy. You would graduate in less than 2 ½ years, eligible to serve as an officer on a merchant ship, and with a commission as an ensign in the Navy Reserve.

      Melvin spent the fall of 1944 studying at the Academy. His coursework included Steam Engineering, Diesel Engineering, Ordnance and Gunnery, Ship Construction, and Ship's Business. He went to sea for the first time in December 1944. The first stop was in Panama, and this was when he made his first trip through the Panama Canal. However, as an engineering cadet, he was below deck in the engine room, so didn't get to see anything. He spent the next several months at sea, mostly in the South Pacific. He was at sea when FDR died and on VE day. He was back in the United States by VJ day in August 1945, and resumed his studies at the Merchant Marine Academy that fall. He graduated from the Merchant Marine Academy in December 1946.

      Melvin spent 1947 and much of 1948 working as an assistant engineer on a series of merchant ships. His responsibilities included helping to maintain the ship's electrical generators, boilers and various pieces of equipment. He was at sea on one of these trips when his father died of cancer in August 1947.

      In 1948, Melvin activated his commission in the navy reserve and went on active duty. He served as Boiler Division Officer on the USS Juneau with about 40 sailors reporting to him. His division was responsible for maintaining the ship's boilers, firerooms, and all auxiliary equipment. He trained the men under him in the use of oxyacetylene cutting torches; rescue breathing apparatus; drainage of flooded compartments; emergency communication techniques; first aid; ventilation of damaged spaces; techniques to use in case of an atomic bomb attack; and more.

      He resigned his commission in July 1950 in order to return to school, specifically the Georgetown School of Foreign Service. He studied there for a year, and then, in 1951 he got a job at the Navy Department as a Supply Requirements Officer in the Bureau of Ships. He continued his education with evening classes at George Washington University and finally received a Bachelors degree in mathematics in June 1954 – 11 years after graduating from high school.

      In 1960, he was hired by the Department of the Interior as a general engineer in the Office of Saline Water. He moved his family to Webster, South Dakota where the government was building a demonstration water desalination plant. Melvin was responsible for seeing that all construction of the plant – including masonry, heating, plumbing and ventilation – was per spec. He was also responsible for ensuring that all pumps, pipes, electrical systems and instruments were properly installed. He remained in charge of the plant from when it started operating in late 1961 until he and his family returned to the DC area in 1963.

      Melvin continued to work at the Department of the Interior until retiring from the government in 1984. During his years at Interior, he became a recognized expert on water desalination. He authored or co-authored several papers on the subject. To this day, if you Google his name, you won't have any trouble finding pertinent hits. Over the years, he consulted with the Bureau of Reclamation, US Army Corps of Engineers, the United Nations and several Middle East countries on large desalination plants. By the end of his government career, he was directing all R&D activity related to water desalination using membrane process technology.

      So what does it all mean? Melvin was driven to get an education, despite meager financial resources and the inconvenience of World War II. As a young man, he spent a lot of time below deck dealing with heavy noisy dangerous equipment, quietly working behind the scenes, helping keep huge ships running smoothly. I remember as a child not being very impressed by his carpentry skills. But he apparently knew how to build ocean going ships and water desalination plants. And he knew his way around an oxyacetylene cutting torch. And he would probably have been a lot more useful in a nuclear emergency than I ever gave him credit for.