To most observers, Matt Fox was an unremarkable man who didn’t make a fortune, have articles printed about him nor were statues erected in his name, but to his daughters, Becky, Grace, Amy and Nancy he was something else.
He was the dad who took us to work with him, who bathed us as babies, who made us breakfast and packed lunches for us way into our 20’s. He danced with us at school dances when no one else did and he loved our mother, who could be unlovable at times.
In fact, when we talked with him about dying, he asked us to write his obituary. Here is some of what he wanted said: Matt Fox, loving father of 4 girls and long-suffering husband of the late Dorothy…”
A bit about him:
According to his baby book, he was built like a sausage (never outgrew this) and strong as an ox. He was the baby of the family and enjoyed playing tricks on his older brother, Lancie, especially when his parents insisted he come on dates with Lancie. They gave him a box of matches and made him stay outside the car when they were at the drive in. He got himself back in the car by knocking on the window, lighting a match, and holding it over the gas cap.
Born to George and Mary, a prominent KC family who owned Fox Products, a manufacturer of jams and ice cream toppings. He spent his early working years learning the business, then came the Korean War Draft.
Although fiercely protective of us, he was much more a lover than a fighter, so he happily spent his service in Germany with more beer than bullets, which he thought was nifty.
After his military time ended, he came back to the family business and was sure it was to be his life’s work, but fate and family ruined that dream. After the sudden death of his father, George A. Fox, Jr. in February 1962 (he was so well known in the community, his death was on the local news), Fox Products was run by Matt, who owned 48% and two other family members who owned 52%. Tension continued to grow between the family at this time. He made an offer to purchase some or all of their shares in Fox Products so that he could have controlling interest in the business. Instead, and without his consent, they sold the company. He was thoroughly against selling. He had big visions of expanding, retiring there and handing the company to his daughters. There was nothing else left for him to do, but to resign as the Vice President of Fox Products. They paid him a measly sum for his 48%.
He was heartbroken...he actually never really recovered from this loss.
Well, Pop, you are back with Mom and all the family who treated you so badly. Our prayer is that you can work that out and finally be at peace.