Short, Matthew C. Sr.
Spencerport: Peacefully on August 23, 2017. Predeceased by his mother, Christine Matheos Short. Survived by his children, Lindsay Short, Matthew Short, Jr., Kathryn Short; father, George Elliott Short Jr.; sister, Sandra (Vince) Short Bartlett, MD., brother, George (Hilary) Short III; mother of his children, Melissa Pettis Short. To share a memory of Matthew or send a condolence to the family visit, www.walkerbrothersfh.com. A memorial service will be Saturday at 10:00 am at the funeral home, 15 West Ave. Spencerport. Interment at Fairfield Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to St. Jude Children’s Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place Memphis, TN 38105.
Matt was born March 25, 1963 in Rochester NY. He was named after his paternal grandfather, Chris Matheos. He grew up in Spencerport. His father, George Elliott Short, Jr ‘Elliott’, worked in international marketing for Bausch and Lomb, then later owned and operated Chateau Ice Cream Distributors. His mother, Christine Matheos Short ‘Chris’, worked at her family’s business, Matheos Velvet Ice Cream, as a bookkeeper for Spencerport schools., and later at Chateau. Matt had two older siblings: Sandy – a newborn intensive care doctor at Kaiser in California, and George – Principal Scientist at Wisdom Audio in Nevada. Matt and George were only a year apart, so his parents were quite surprised that they were having another baby. He became his mother’s favorite, the baby of the family.
Matt lived on Coolidge Ave until age 4. He played with his older siblings and kids since he was in diapers. He was very fond of the neighbor’s dog, Blondie. Matt and his brother later picked out a dog from the vet - Dr. McKinney. They thought it was a St. Bernard puppy, but Peeky was actually a very old Pekinese mix.
Matt had some close calls. At age 2, he put the family car into neutral and ‘backed it down’ the long driveway, then fell out of the car as it kept rolling. Fortunately, he was unharmed. He also slipped out the open back slider and fell into the built- in pool. His mother had taught him how to hold his breath – which he did calmly until someone pulled him out.
When Matt was 4, the family moved to an old Victorian family owned home on Amity Street, in the heart if the Village. He continued to reside there until his death.
Matt continued to enjoy vehicles and mechanical things. He had a minibike at an early age, and had multiple run-ins with officer Krauss. He liked to ‘work’ at the Matheos Velvet Ice Cream factory, a business started by his paternal grandfather and great uncle, who were Greek immigrants. He enjoyed hanging out with his maternal uncle ‘Gus’, who operated the plant for several years. He commented that he saw Gus along with his mother, shortly before he passed.
Matt’s paternal grandparents, George and Jessie Short, were also a big part of his life. George drove the first truck in Rochester. Matt loved to do projects in his grandfather’s basement workshop. He would attend St. Mark’s and St. John’s Episcopal Church with his grandparents.
During first grade, Matt suddenly started wetting the bed. His mother Chris figured out that he had childhood diabetes. This disease would be a lifelong battle for Matt.
As Matt grew up, he continued his interest in motor vehicles. At age 12 he taught his older sister Sandy to drive a stick shift – by practicing in the driveway and St. John’s parking lot. He had a lot of friends including Danny D’Urbano and Dave Bateman, and several girlfriends. He and his brother George had legendary parties. Some of Matt’s friends were adults who shared common interests, such as Larry Elliott, and Roger Maxwell. They became lifelong pals. Larry continues to help repair numerous family cars.
Matt was not the best student, but he graduated on time in 1981. He also participated in some high school pranks. He visited the principal’s office numerous times. Matt and Mr. Prybytzian became such good friends that Matt continued to visit Mr. P after his retirement. Matt did enjoy his studies in heating, air conditioning and refrigeration. He also scored very high on a History Regents exam – his parents thought they were being contacted because he caused trouble, but it was actually due to his high test score!
Work: Matt started working odd jobs as a kid, had a Pennysaver route with Bill Burns, etc. He was a principal in Chateau Ice Cream Distributors, a business owned by his father. His cousin Steve DeMallie, his aunt Audrey DeMallie, other family members and lifelong friends also worked there for a time. Later he had an ice cream vending business, Lindsay’s Ice Cream. He also repaired and maintained freezers, using the knowledge he gained in high school.
The family took multiple vacations to Florida, to see grandparents. Matt particularly enjoyed stopping at ‘South of the Border’, a store in the Carolinas where you could purchase fireworks. He travelled with his brother and parents to Myrtle Beach on several occasions. The family owned a cottage in Old Forge, NY. In the Adirondacks. He especially enjoyed the Enchanted Forest, fireworks over the lake, and boating. As an adult, he owned several snowmobiles and he would ride them on the trails there.
Matt became very good friends with the Pettis girls, Shellie and Mel. He also was like a son to their father, Jerry. They had a 4 year old sister, Melissa ‘Missy’. Missy started writing Matt love letters when she was 5. Matt and Missy were married in 1993. Mike Colletta and the late Lee Petty were groomsmen.
Matt said that the greatest day of his life was when he became a father. This was repeated two more times. Missy and Matt went on to have 3 children together: Lindsay 23, a podiatric medical ‘foot doctor’ student in NYC, Matt Jr., 20 who until now has been the main caregiver for Matt, and Kathryn ‘Katie’, 17, who is an honor student at Spencerport High School. Matt recently met Lindsay’s fiancé, James Nguyen. He advised Lindsay and James to ‘make beautiful babies.’
Missy and Matt’s marriage lasted 13 years, but the friendship endured. Missy and her family (Rick, Victoria and Valerie) have resided in part of the Amity Street house for the past few years. Matt was very close to the two little girls who are half-sisters of his kids. They called him,’ Uncle Matt’. The household also includes two cats, one of which is a rescue cat. At first Matt was completely against cats, but when Missy brought one home he fell in love with the cat, Dustin, which he called "woofer"
Matt enjoyed taking his family do dine out almost weekly. His favorite dish was artichokes French. When he was younger and on ice cream routes he used to like Nick Tahoe’s garbage plate.
Matt had a number of hobbies. He enjoyed watching Formula One racing, and he went to Watkins Glen. He played Yahtzee with Missy and family. He liked watching shows such as ‘Judge Judy’, ‘Pawn Stars’, ‘Ice Road Truckers’ and ‘Gold Rush’. Matt loved buying and selling antiques and collectibles, such as old Coke machines, tools, and automotive items. Matt also was an avid history buff and had thoughtful opinions about government and current events. He would watch anything on the History Channel.
He liked the ‘Dirty Harry’ movies.
Matt watched a documentary about Jimmy Carter. He always admired his honesty and charitable work. Matt recently drove to Georgia with his two youngest children to attend Church and meet the President.
Matt lived life to the fullest. He was somewhat fatalistic as at age 10 he overheard his doctor telling his mother that he would be blind by 16 and dead by 20. He did have some eye issues from lazy eye and diabetes, but he basically beat both of the predictions. Matt was always kind and a straightforward. He was the quintessential townie, and he knew almost everyone in Spencerport. Due to Chateau and Lindsay’s ice cream companies, he knew many restauranteurs and other businesspeople in the Rochester area. Matt loved to shoot the breeze, and he would rather deal with a person than an answering machine/computer. He always looked for the good in people and was genuinely interested in their lives. He enriched so many.