Travis James Matthews

Travis James Matthews
Civic Leader

Travis James Matthews was born in Ponder, Texas, on May 17, 1923. He worked for Consolidated Aircraft for two years after high school before enlisting in the U.S. Army Air Corps in August 1943 at age 20. Trained as an aviator and radar and radio specialist, he served in the Pacific Theater during WWII. After the war he returned to Denton and married Doris Nell Erwin in 1947. In 1949 Travis graduated from North Texas State University with a degree in accounting and worked for Ling-Temco Vought (LTV) for 33 years, retiring in 1984.

In 1952, Travis moved his family to Grapevine where he maintained a residence until his death at age 98 in 2021. His two daughters are both graduates of Grapevine High School – Sandra Matthews Hodges in 1970, and Linda Matthews Nettles in 1973.

Travis served his community for over sixty years. He joined the Grapevine Masonic Lodge in 1956 and received his 60-year pin in 2016. He served one term on the Grapevine City Council, 1960-1962, and served four terms on the GCISD Board of Trustees, 1966-1974, as Secretary and Secretary/Treasurer. During his trustee tenure, the district transitioned from GISD to GCISD.

During his school board tenure, GCISD experienced a time of unprecedented growth and saw the completion of many capital projects. The new Grapevine High School and Athletic Complex opened in 1970, Dove Elementary School in 1974 and Colleyville Middle School in 1975. The $1,000,000 Career Center opened in 1974/1975. He was a longtime supporter of GHS athletics and a season ticket holder for the Grapevine Mustangs. The Dove Elementary PTA named him a lifetime member in 1975.

Travis joined First Baptist Church Grapevine in 1953 and became an ordained deacon in 1961. He served in many roles at FBCG – teacher, finance committee chair, Sunday School officer and was a mentor and role model to many. FBCG named him Deacon Emeritus in 2020.

An avid golfer, Travis played with a group of Grapevine men every Saturday for 40 years. He was part of the initiative to build the Grapevine Municipal Golf Course and remained a member until his death. On May 5, 1997, Travis scored a hole-in-one at that course.

His dedication to God, his family, and his community earned him the respect of all who knew him. Friends describe him as a mentor and encourager, with a heart of service and quiet humility. He did not seek recognition for himself, but his love, loyalty, and integrity led him to care for and aid others.