Share a special moment from Matthew's life.

Cousin Love

Shared by Leah Floyd on June 8, 2021
“Friends might choose you at some point in your life, but cousins loved you from the start.” — Anonymous

Cousins share a very special bond.  They are your first best friends; they are the only ones who understand your family dynamic.  You learn so much from your cousin relationships.  How to laugh, how to have fun, and most importantly how to value family. We learn what matters most in life, and learn about the most important thing in life from our cousins - love.  I will forever cherish the memories I have of my dear cousin Matt.

We remember people for many different reasons.  Maybe their great laugh, or outgoing personality.  Maybe because they share a unique viewpoint, or know how to tell an interesting story.  With my cousin Matt, what I will remember most is a life well-lived and a person well-loved. 

When we were kids all the cousins loved going to hang at our Aunt Fran’s house.  She was the “cool” aunt that had soda, pizza, candy, and every VHS video you could ever want to watch.  Not to mention Atari games galore, which Matt often won.  Out of all the cousins, Matt was always the “good” one.  His kindness and soft- spoken nature impressed everyone. Holidays were always a special time in our family and I can remember that whenever Matt walked through the door the whole room would light up!  People would crowd around him…….the seniors, the adults, the teens, the kids, even the dogs.  He had a magnetic appeal like no other and didn’t know a stranger.

To know Matt was to know you were cared for, was to know kindness, was to know faith, was to know what a good man really is.  Matt was one of the best men I have ever had the privilege of knowing and I was lucky enough to call him my family.

Loved ones will leave us, but the love stays with us forever.  The comfort that we have during this time of pain is knowing that Matt will be in our hearts and memories forever.

Matt, by blood you were my cousin, in my heart you were my friend.  We all love you and miss you very much and you will forever be honored and remembered.

“We didn’t realize we were making memories; we just knew we were having fun.” – Winnie the Pooh

Michael LaConte to Matt

Shared by Frances McCollum on June 8, 2021
Dear Matthew,                                                                                                                                            You are and will always be what I consider the true measure of a man, father, husband and son. I am 64 now and have to say you are truly one of the kindest, gentlemen, and friends I have ever known. I was blessed to be your friend and saw you in the best and the hardest of times. You made me laugh and made me cry. I was there when you had your first child Jack. He carries your spirit and your kindness. So many memories in the Gallery. Laying on the floor and looking at the birds hanging from the ceiling. Sometimes just hanging out over a coffee or a great glass of wine in your kitchen. So many wonderful dinners together with your most remarkable wife and partner till you left for heaven. I know where you are now and just have to look up .My heart is shattered. I miss you... like I do my mother. She was a god to me and so are you .I will never ever, ever, ever forget you.I promised you years ago that as long as I am here on Earth I would be their for your children if they ever need me. My last dinner with you was at the Sugar Factory with Jess, Jack, Erin and Case .I can still see the sparklers on the 22 Scoop Ice cream dessert. We laughed so hard and then the rolling dog came out. You were a gift to the World and you will never be gone in my heart and the thousands of heart you touched with By The Hand and the Missionary work you did. Your gift will bring hope to others for your "Courage" was that of a King, a Lion, a Giant with the biggest warmest heart. You did everything from your heart... I know this for sure!  love you and feel you are near. May your body take a rest and may your spirit fly as high as the heavens .It is hard to write this with tears streaming down but I know and pray I will see you again. Bless you and thank you for including me in your life .Always and forever your friend,                                                                     Michael LaConte

First Family Get Together

Shared by Shane Hibbard on May 7, 2021
The Hibbards and McCollums have been close friends for many years.  For our very first get together the McCollum family came over for dinner and drinks.  At the time, I only knew Matt through pick-up basketball games with the other dads in Glen Ellyn.  Matt was the nice guy who could completely dominate you because he was a real player.  We quickly found that we had a mutual love of Indiana University basketball and were lucky that Indiana happened to be playing a big game that night versus the #1 ranked Kentucky Wildcats.  Matt and I traded Hoosier basketball stories as we cheered on the team.  The game was close throughout.  With 6 seconds left Indiana was down two with one final chance.  Matt and I were both out of our seats by now, 3 inches from the TV clamoring for the Hoosiers.  As Indiana guard Christian Watford drained a 3-pointer for a last second victory, Matt and I were jumping up and down, high-fiving, and shouting in disbelief.  Our wives, who were less enthusiastic about the outcome, looked on amusingly.   I was so grateful to have a fellow Hoosier to share that game with and so lucky to have him as a friend.  After that night, the Hibbards and McCollums were inseparable.  We have shared so many good times together.

Married by Matt and Jessica

Shared by Melissa Knapp on May 6, 2021
Jessica has been my best friend since freshman year of high-school.  I have so many stories I would love to share about Matt but I will just stick to one.  I was there the night Jessica met Matt.  And since then, Matt has been family.  I was blessed to start my life over with my now husband Thomas.  At the time, we decided to have a non-traditional, simple wedding.  We talked a lot about what kind of ceremony we wanted - and who better to marry us than Matt and Jessica. They both got ordained on-line : ) The ceremony was perfect - better than  I could ever imagine. I told Matt he should starta side business marrying couples : ) Jessica, I am so grateful for our friendship and honored to call Matt family.  We will miss you Matt so much.

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