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In 1894, Luigi and Caterina Meta, along with their children, Carmen, Joseph, Rose, Amodel, Theresa and Anthony, (Paul was later born in the US), emigrated from Province of Catanzaro, Calabria, Italy to Little Italy (NY) for a short time and later to Utica, where they made their home.
The Meta children began their education at Bleecker Street School and when asked their surname, the teachers wrote Matt. The Matt family put their efforts into several business endeavors, including a meat market, a Bleecker St. apartment building, Eagle Ice Cream Company, which included an ice house and at one time had 30 horse wagons on the road. Carmen and Joe went into the real estate business, Anthony became an undertaker and Paul became an attorney. The original location of Anthony’s funeral business, established in 1914, was on Third Ave and later the corner of Third Ave and Bleecker St. On May 22, 1920, Anthony F. Matt was married to the former Lena I. Viscosi. Anthony was very involved in the Italian, Syrian and Lebanese communities, being fluent in their languages and providing funeral services.
Anthony worked tirelessly in the business until his death on January 3, 1947. During his illness and before his death, his son, John returned from NYC, where he was a funeral director, and helped to continue in his father’s tradition of service to the community. In December of 1947, the operation relocated to its present location at 700 Rutger St., corner of Mohawk St., in Utica. On April 19th, 1948, the business was incorporated, and named John as President and Lena as Secretary to the corporation, a title she held until her retirement in 1963. Lena died in 1994. On October 5, 1941, John L. Matt married Grace “Jean” Massaro. The couple worked together in the business until John’s retirement in 1974, when his son, Anthony F. Matt, returned to the business as a funeral director and later as President of Matt Funeral Service, Inc. Jean continued to work in the business with her son into the 1980’s. John passed away December 10, 2011 and Grace (Jean) followed on May 22, 2012.
Anthony, along with his sister, Maria Matt Zegarelli, purchased the business from their parents in 1985, and were instrumental in providing compassionate funerals for the many families served over the years. Maria retired in October 1996, and Anthony (Tony) F. Matt became sole owner of Matt Funeral Service, Inc. On October 27, 1984, Anthony married Kimberly L. Roy. The couple continued to maintain the standards established by Tony’s parents, and grandparents. Tony and Kim have two sons, Anthony F. Matt, III, who works as a commercial diver and Dominic A. Matt, who became a licensed funeral director and the 4th generation of Matt funeral directors in 2017. Dominic joined his parents in the family business and continues to carry on the Matt tradition of service.
In our 106th year, the legacy of caring for family and friends continues.