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W.R. (Bill) Matthews has passed


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One of the founders of IPMS, whom old-timers will remember as writer of the "Model Enthusiast" column in Air Enthusiast  magazine for many years, has died, according to David Riley of AviationPhotographyInternational.com. David sent this message to the Airline Modelers Digest group:

"It is with regret that I have to advise the death of Bill Matthews, who passed peacefully in his sleep on Wednesday. I know that Bill is known to many of you here. I met Bill through AMD whilst living in Hong Kong and we have been great friends ever since. On my return to the UK twenty years ago, Bill introduced me to the Portsmouth Branch of IPMS and we have attended their monthly meetings whenever possible since then. The last being in September, just before the next lockdown here in the UK. As many of you know, Bill was one of the original founding fathers for the IPMS and his membership number was 007. Very fitting for Bill, the quintessential Englishman! Like everyone, Bill got frailer as time marched on, but was still modelling until the end. He told me at that last meeting that his latest project was making a kit he had discovered at the back of his cupboard, of a plane I had never heard of, by a manufacturer long departed. He loved a challenge!

"Because of his frailty, I took Bill to the IPMS Modelworld event for many years, the last being in 2017, and he was very much venerated by everyone I came across in the IPMS world. One of the IPMS UK Committee once described Bill as one of the most helpful people he had ever come across, and this sums him up perfectly. I always thought of Bill as a true gentleman. He was always willing to take a moment to share his vast modelling experience with anyone who asked him for help." 

"I will miss him terribly. His wife has asked me to attend his funeral and, subject to covid restrictions, I will do so."

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Sorry to hear this....Most of us have reached the age where we'll be dealing with the passing of too many of the "names" who helped form the hobby of plastic model building into the true art form it is today. All we can do is say God bless them for their contribution, God bless their families, and "thank you Lord" for the privilege of knowing and having such people as a part of our hobby!

Gil :smiley16:

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I was very sorry to hear of the passing of Mr. W.R. Matthews. Older old-timers will remember him from before Air Enthusiast when he wrote the modeling column for Flying Review International. As a budding serious teen age modeler in America, he was for me a near mythical guru of our hobby. Everything he did in the Mother Country seemed so much different and better than what we were doing here in the colonies. His information about aircraft I never heard of and camouflage schemes never seen before was fun and exciting and educational. And as if that wasn’t enough, he had a Briton’s enviable superior command of the Queen’s English. It was a powerful vocabulary and grammar builder for this student. 

I wish to extend my condolences to his family and encourage them take some solace in the fact that their loved one was so gifted and generous that he could reach out to a person thousands of miles away and nurture a hobby that has brought me a lifetime of enjoyment. I will always remember his monthly tutorials with fondness and respect. 

May he Rest In Peace.

Nick Filippone
 

 

 

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