After graduating from The Citadel in 2001, Matthew served in the United States Marine Corps for 20 years as an Infantry Officer and Special Operations Officer – Marine Raider and deployed five times to Iraq, Afghanistan and other locations throughout the globe.
On 5 March 2010, while on a combat patrol in Helmand Province Afghanistan, Matthew was shot by an enemy sniper. The traumatic and life-threatening injuries included an open compound fracture to the tibia, two of three arteries severed in his lower leg resulting in complete blood loss, destruction of 3 inches of the tibial nerve, compartment syndrome requiring a fasciotomy and removal of half of the calf muscle. After prolonged stays in multiple hospitals, eleven life and limb saving surgeries, and hundreds of physical therapy sessions, Matthew deployed back to Afghanistan two years after getting shot and served in the Marine Corps for an additional nine years.
In order to better recover from his traumatic and extensive injuries Matthew, at the orders of his Ortho-Trauma Surgeon, started cycling. This guidance turned into a cycling and ultra-endurance passion. Since 2012, Matthew has covered 64,000 miles on his bicycles, participated in numerous endurance and ultra-endurance cycling races around the United States and raised over $50,000 for non-profit organizations and various scholarships in the process. In November of 2019, while deployed to Baghdad, Iraq, in an effort to celebrate the ten-year anniversary of nearly dying, Matthew fought through extreme pain and started running again (against the desires and orders of the doctors); and has since completed three Marathons and one 50K ultra-endurance race.
Matthew’s extensive decorations for his service in the Marine Corps include the Purple Heart, Combat Action Ribbon with two Gold Stars, Bronze Star with Combat V for Valor, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal with Combat V for Valor, Marine Corps Commendation Medal with Combat V for Valor and the Defense Meritorious Service Medal.
After departing the Marine Corps Matthew transitioned his extensive background and experiences in leadership, planning and problem solving into the Manufacturing world as a Project Manager at a local Manufacturing plant.
Matthew is an avid reader and student of history with emphasis on US Foreign Policy, US Military Strategy, The Bible, Leadership, the American Civil War, President George Washington and the American Revolution. He utilizes his personal and professional knowledge, study and life experiences to provide insight and consultation on foreign policy and military strategy, and to deliver motivational and educational speeches and discussions to civil, business, historical and religious groups and Churches.
In addition to a Bachelor’s Degree in History from The Citadel, Matthew has a Master’s Degree in Social Science from The Citadel and a Master’s Degree in Military Arts and Science from the Marine Corps University.
A devoted Christian and family man, Matthew is married to Andrea, a Pickens native and graduate of Clemson University and life-long school teacher. They have four beautiful daughters, a dog, two cats, several rabbits, goats and chickens on the way.