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Hundreds say goodbye to Fayetteville's 'Bicycle Man'

Posted July 22, 2013

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— Family and friends said their final goodbyes Monday afternoon to Fayetteville's "Bicycle Man," who spent more than two decades of his life giving back to the community.

Hundreds of people gathered in Raeford to remember Moses Mathis, affectionately known and recognized for his 22 years of restoring bicycles to give away to needy children at Christmas time.

Described as a "gentle giant," Mathis died in his sleep last Monday after a long illness.

"It brought joy to him, I think, even more so than to the kids," Rev. Fredrick Henley, of Hood Memorial AME Zion Church, said during Monday's service. "One of his sayings was, 'It's all about the kids. It's all about the kids.'"

Those remembering him Monday say he has left a lasting legacy on the community and that the spirit of his work will live on.

"We intend to keep that going, because that's what's needed here," Mathis' friend, Phil White, said. "That's what young people need."

A Navy veteran, Mathis was buried at Sandhills State Veterans Cemetery in Spring Lake.

He leaves behind his wife of 46 years, Ann Mathis, a son, a daughter and six grandchildren.

"He was a very powerful man, a very strong-looking man, but he was good at heart," White said. "His heart was very good."

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  • raleighwakenative Jul 23, 2013

    Mr. Mathis left his world a better place. I emailed him in January about my Schwinn bike from the 1960s and he said it was too old to fix up and give to a child. Despite his illness, he was still continuing on his mission. You will be missed Mr. Mathis. I am glad your family will carry on your legacy.

  • LordHelpUsAll Jul 23, 2013

    As loving of children as Mr. Mathis was, I doubt he would appreciate disparaging remarks about the royal baby. He is after all just a baby being cuddle by a mom that hopes and prays for the best future for him, just as I'm sure Mr. Mathis' mom did him when he was a baby. I hope she was around to see how awesome her son was.... we'll just have to wait and see on the royal baby... he'll have to make his own way too, under his own set of extreme conditions. There's a pretty daunting price for THAT silver spoon.

  • itsmyownopinion Jul 23, 2013

    Every Christmas I looked forward to the media coverage about this fine individual, a good man who put others before himself. He will be missed and fondly remembered by many, especially those children who grew up riding the bicycles he gave them. RIP Bicycle Man. Condolences to your family and friends.

    It's a sad commentary that there is not more interest in his story than some of the other stories in the news.

  • LordHelpUsAll Jul 23, 2013

    RIP treasured soul. You were a good and faithful servant.

  • SunShineW007 Jul 23, 2013

    I'm very glad that his family is going to keep his work going. He will be missed by many.

  • dadsgoose98 Jul 22, 2013

    I remember WRAL doing stories on this man almost every year around Christmas time. We could solve a great many problems in this country if only we had more folks like him.

  • 20K Jul 22, 2013

    He was a good man and will be truly missed!!!

  • cbiga220 Jul 22, 2013

    People may not realize it now but come Christmas, the "Bicycle Man" will be just as much a part of Christmas as Santa Clause to the little kids of Fayetteville, you WILL BE MISSED, Sir! ....RIP

  • whistler411 Jul 22, 2013

    An amazing and generous soul. The world is lucky to have rarities like him.

  • MISC Jul 22, 2013

    Pseudo you nailed it. Here was a great man that people could look up to and more people are worried about some silver spoon baby. Mr. Mathis was a good man who helped others greatly.

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