Family and friends gathered on Second Beach Friday evening to remember and honor, Gary Mathias of Portsmouth, who was swept into the ocean near the Sachuest Point Wildlife Refuge one year ago. He died doing what his family and friends said he enjoyed the most, fishing.
His daughter, Nicole Mathias, a high school senior, stood on a rock, and spoke about her father with admiration and strength. She said over the past year, she has listened to every song in his CD collection, which is over 600 albums. She has chosen lyrics from one of his songs to be engraved in a memorial bench.
Gary earned a bachelor's degree with a double major in political science and English, and a master's degree in public administration from the University of Rhode Island.
His plans were to pursue a career in public administration, but he discovered his true calling as a chef when he went to work for the Brick Alley Pub. Gary and his recipes have been featured in publications including The Providence Journal (2006), Bon Appetit, The Taste of Newport (2008) and the Mercury (2011).
"He loved to fish," said Brick Alley Pub co-owner Matt Plumb. "Odds are that if he wasn't at work or with his daughter, he'd be fishing. He fished at Sachuest Point all the time. I'd say it was his favorite fishing spot."
Did you know Gary? Share your memories in the comments.