Professor Matthew H. Hils, 58 years of age, passed away Tuesday, June 10, 2014 at his residence. Born in Ft. Benning, Georgia on November 27, 1955, was the son of M. David and Elizabeth (Oberle ) Hils. A resident of the Hiram area the past 30 years, he was presently the Professor of Biology & Director of James H. Barrow Field Station & Center for the Study of Nature and Society Hiram College. A graduate of Thomas More College in Crestview Hills, Kentucky where he obtained his B.S. in Biology, he then earned his Master's Degree at Miami University of Ohio, followed by his Ph.D. from the University of Florida in Gainesville. Professor Hils was an avid basketball enthusiast, truly enjoyed the outdoors as well as being a world traveler, and will always be remembered by family, friends and students for his support and attendance at Hiram College sporting functions. He leaves a legacy of being not only an advisor, but as a mentor for thousands of students who had the privilege of knowing him both in and out of the classroom. He was a member of the Garfield Society.
Survivors include his son Shawn Hils of Denver, Colorado, daughter Amanda Hils of Hiram, parents M. David and Elizabeth Hils, brother David (Mary) Hils, sisters Kathy (Andy) Rechel, Sandy (Paul) Maffey, Linda (Jeff) Ratterman and Beth (Michael) Noe all of Cincinnati, Ohio and his partner Gloria Pugh-Kobus of Lordstown, Ohio. He was preceded in death by his sister Mary Hils. No calling hours. A Celebration of Life Service will be Saturday June 14, 2014, 10:30 a.m. at the James H. Barrow Field Station; 11305 Wheeler Road, Garrettsville, Ohio 44231 with Rev. Beth O'Malley officiating. The family will receive friends immediately following until 12:30 p.m. at the Field Station. Final resting place is at Hiram, Ohio. In lieu of flowers, Memorial Gifts can be made in Professor Hils' honor to Hiram College, P.O. Box 67, Hiram, Ohio 44234. Arrangements are by the Green Family Funeral Home & Crematory Service in Mantua.
(Green Family Funeral Home & Crematory Service, 330-274-3145, RC 6-12 & 13-14)
Dear Family of Matt,
I graduated from TMC with Matt. He was a very fun guy! He was always kind. I often think of Matt over the years and have wondered about him. I saw him a few times since graduation and he was always the same great guy. My Dad was a biology professior at TMC and Matt and I shared many classes together. My Dad as well as another professor, Sister Mary Laurence are also now in Heaven with Matt. Another good friend of ours from out TMC Biology days is also in Heaven with them; Bridget Hammer Mitchell. Until we all meet again in peace....
Teresa Humphreys TMC Biology Class of 1978
My deepest sympathy to the family and many friends of Matthew Hils.
I have known Matt since the early 1980's when he worked for the Division of Natural Areas and Preserves at Old Woman Creek. He was both well respected and well liked. Even in his early days he was an outstanding mentor. Since then, the high quality of his students' endevors speaks volumes for his teaching and research mentoring. I considered him the ideal professor. He will be greatly missed by those whose lives he touched.