Clifford Matthews Obituary (1948 – 2022) – Lexington, KY

Dr. Clifford C. Matthews, Jr.
February 2, 1948 – January 4, 2022
Lexington, KY – Dr. Clifford C. Matthews of Jessamine County, KY passed away on January 4, 2022 at Baptist Health in Lexington, KY. He was born on February 2, 1948, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to Clifford C. Matthews, Sr., and Helen Weise Matthews. He and his wife, Annetta, lived in Somerset, KY, for over 30 years and were members of First Presbyterian Church. In high school, Dr. Matthews ran track, sang in the choir, and captained the football team. He received a scholarship to the University of Miami in Oxford, OH, where he studied chemistry and German. He was a member of the University Choir which performed with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and toured throughout Europe. After earning a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Miami in 1970, he moved to Heidelberg, Germany. There he worked as a research assistant under Professor Wilhelm Hasselbach at the world renowned Max Planck Institute for Medical Research, Department of Physiology; and under the direction of Professor Eberhard Ritz in the Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Nephrology, University of Heidelberg. He then attended medical school at the University of Heidelberg (founded in 1386) while continuing his work as a research assistant. He graduated Magna Cum Laude in 1979 with medical and doctoral degrees. Throughout his time alongside some of the most reputable researchers, his work has been published more than 10 times in medical journals. This research was groundbreaking for muscle cell biochemistry, particularly regarding the effect of vitamin D on calcium transport through the sarcoplasmic reticulum. Upon his return to the United States, he completed his residency in internal medicine at the Medical College of Ohio and the Affiliated Hospitals of Toledo. He also spent a summer at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. He then completed his nephrology fellowship at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington. After moving to Somerset in 1990, he was appointed Medical Director of Somerset Dialysis Center and two other units in surrounding counties as Medical Director of Fresenius Medical Care. He opened his own private practice in nephrology in 1990 and was an active member of the medical staff at Lake Cumberland Regional Hospital where he served patients until his death. Dr. Matthews has also served as Professor of Clinical Medicine at Marshall University Medical School in Huntington, WV, the University of Kentucky Medical School, and the Lake Cumberland Residency Program. He was a member of the International Society of Nephrology, the Kentucky Medical Association, and the American Society of Nephrology. Dr. Matthews was very successful but was extremely humble. He was a compassionate, empathetic, generous and extremely witty man who never hesitated to laugh at himself. He loved helping others and always put his family first. He had a love for classical music and art, coupled with an inquisitive nature that fostered lifelong learning, which he passed on to his grandchildren. At home, he and Annetta would start the day with coffee and the newspaper. They loved to travel, whether it was a short trip to the neighboring county, a scenic drive to the beach, or a trip overseas to experience adventures together. On the rare occasions when he wasn’t working, you might find him gardening or mowing his yard. He loved decorating for Christmas, especially at their Somerset home on College Street. He was an avid reader and treasured their fur babies. He had a gentle demeanor, a passion for teaching, and a love for his grandchildren beyond measure. His eyes still sparkled when they entered the room. He and Annetta moved to Jessamine County in 2019 to be closer to family and enjoy the peaceful countryside. Dr. Matthews is survived by his wife, Annetta Sigler Matthews; daughters Debra Wilson of Lexington; Lisa Neal and (Shaun) of Jessamine County; as well as three grandchildren: Stormy Neal of Jessamine County; Conley Neal of Jessamine County; and Adriel Wilson of Lexington. Also survived by his sister, Susan Bucco and (Robert) of Malvern, PA; niece Margaret Bucco and (Mark), great-nephew Birch; nephew Tom Bucco; and several cousins. The family looks forward to your presence at the memorial service in honor of Dr. Matthews, which will be held at First Baptist Church (128 North Main Street) in Somerset on Saturday, February 19 at 11:30 a.m. EST. Immediate family had a prayer service before his interment at Blue Grass Memorial Gardens on January 10. Expressions of sympathy may take the form of donations to: Autism Society of the Bluegrass, 453 Rookwood Pkwy., Lexington, KY 40505 or Presbyterian World Mission, 100 Witherspoon Street, Louisville, KY 40202.

Published by Lexington Herald-Leader on February 13, 2022.

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