Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

Remembering the servicemembers who died in the service of their country.

Marine 1st Lt. Matthew D. Lynch

25, of Jericho, New York.
Lynch died from enemy action in Al Anbar Province, Iraq. He was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, California. Died on October 31, 2004.

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"Rest easy Sir
Semper fi

R Ashley
SSgt USMC"
Richard Ashley of STL Mo

"Matt,

You are missed, and not a day goes by when I don't think about our friendship and service together. I miss you my friend"
Callahan

"The other day, Matt came up in conversation as I was talking about my childhood and baseball and swimming. I thought back to all those sleepovers at the Lynch house, thousands of games of ball in my backyard, swimming at the Manors for hours on end. Later on, playing guitar with Matt, then working with him at Red Robin teaching kids to swim, and still having a catch on occasion. Matt is on my motorcycle vest, next to my grandfather. Matt and Tim will always be my childhood brothers, and Angie and Bill my extra parents. As an adult, I am proud to have called Matt a true friend and brother, and my badge at work is covered on Oct 31 every year. Semper Fidelis."
Shaun Wilbert of Commack, NY

"In watching America's Got Talent this past week, we enjoy one of your son's soldier friends speaking about how brave he was and how he, himself, had lost his leg in the same explosion. Just felt the need to tell you how much our country appreciates your sacrifice of losing your son, even tho our ignorant leader refused to acknowledge how important the military is to our country and our freedom and our safety."
A J Miulls of Illinois

"Matt - Thank you for your service and sacrifice. Freedom is not free."
G. Layne of Mesquite, Tx

"25 May 2014. Matt, although rarely does a day go by that I don't think about you and the sacrifice that you made, today certainly makes me reflect more on the times that we shared. I, like Shawn, choose to remember the good times. The late night runs to Krispy Kreme (because the red light was on!), and the "early" morning breakfasts at IHOP (that Will and Shawn refused to go to). I remember that you could always beat me in the gym, in the pool, and in a mustache growing contest. I remember that you had a passion for BMWs, leather couches, and Super Troopers! I remember that you were one of the best men that I have ever known, and one of the best Marines that I have ever had the privilege to serve with. Semper Fi brother; until we meet again - Opie"
Eric Williams, Maj USMCR of Jacksonville, FL/ USA

"Today It Is Oct 31 2013 Lt.lynch Was My platoon commander for whiskey 4 not a Halloween goes by that I don't think of him and today is no exception I hope that you're looking down on us and a proud of each and everyone of us Semper Fidelis sir"
jrm of nm.

"Still miss him terribly. Remembering Matt on this day. Athlete, Warrior, Roommate, Friend."
Maj Bill Morris, USMCR of The Basic School

"Lt. Lynch, still think of you all the time. My young daughter pointed to your picture the other day as she sat on my lap and we looked at my computer, and though she couldnt understand, I told her what a great man and officer you are. You'll always live on in the memory of those that served with you, and I will never forget what you told me. Miss you brother, Semper Fi."
Brian H. of Cleveland, OH

"Sir,

I was a Corspmen that treated you and I tried my best. Please rest in peace. Semper Fi"
M Jackson of Nevada

"To the family of:Matthew D.Lynch
I am so sorry for the loss of your love one. My heart cries out for you in your grief and you have my thoughts and prayers. He died a hero defending freedom. May you have the peace and understanding that only comes from God. Prayerfully we will all meet in Heaven one day where we will rest in the arms of Jesus. If you need prayer or need someone to talk to, please call or write my pastor: Rev. John Pearrell 11677 Brown Bridge Rd., Covington, GA 30016. (770)787-1015.
Your friend in Jesus Christ, Polly Ballew Covington,Ga""

"LT, it was an honor serving with you. We were inducted into combat together and there was no better a leader than you. Our movie trivia during down time is what made Iraq bearable. Thank you for your guidance and comradely. You will be missed Blue Devil… White 1 out."
Nelson Stewart of Stafford ,VA

"Matt - You are not forgotten.

Semper Fi & Retreat Hell!"
Chris Tsirlis

"I am a father of a Marine who served the same time Matthew did. I did not know Matthew or his family however I attended his funeral service. We will never forget his service and the sacrifice he and his family made for us.We have a debt we can not repay."
Joe Rombola of New York

"I did not know Lt. Lynch but having read his story I feel this country needs more people like him. I thank you for your service to our country."
Ensign Christopher Bottcher, U.S. Navy

"My son went yesterday to Afghanistan. He is 2 9 Marines, Golf Company, 1st platoon. I pass Jericho High School every day and I always think about Matt. Lifeguard, Baseball player.
We are from Locust Valley, thank you so much. Glenn is my son he is the platoon commander
(2nd Lt.)"
James Harvey of Locust Valley, New York

"1/25/2010. I got a phone call today from a reporter at Duke Magazine doing a story on Matt. My first thought was, “man, I hope this guy has some time to kill, because I can talk all day about Matt”. Not a day goes by that I don't think about you, and how privileged I am to have known you. I am able to sleep at night knowing that since October 7th, 2001 when you and I were selected as rack mates at Officer Candidate School, well by selected I mean alphabetically, Maurer and Lynch, I got to know a true hero. It is amazing how the chance meeting can lead to a lifetime of memories. Over the next 3 years we basically never apart, every school, every unit, every deployment and every Miller Lite! In my now 30 years, I still have not met a man who lived life like you did. How you crammed all your experiences into your short time on this earth, I was always jealous by how you could give it your best trying to out sleep me, and still have done all the things you did. We always talked about how if something were ever to happen to either of us, we would not be sad, for we lived and experienced more in our short lives than most will in a lifetime. I have some days where I would like to give it a good old cry and rethink why your platoon got tasked with 297, and my platoon got another mission, but I then think that you would just laugh and tell me I am being stupid. I can’t wait to talk to this reporter and bore the S*#@ out of him with all the stories about my time with you, because the best memories I have with you are not the hundreds of combat mission we went on, or the months of realistic training, or the riggers of OCS, I want to tell him about the funny stuff. For anyone who really knew Matt, he was such a fun person to be around, good natured, sarcastic and a person who loved life. As I said at Camp San Mateo, on the parade deck during the memorial for all 15 of our brothers, “I will see you again my friend”."
Shawn Maurer-Fmr Capt USMC of Austin, Texas

"I try to keep things funny, although there nothing funny about Lt. Lynch's passing. I just wish he was there when I got lost at Jones Beach 40 years ago.
Boy that sand was hot. Just a civilian but father of a marine(2nd Lt Glenn Harvey TBS Quantico), all I can think of is Thank You Brother.
Semper Fidelis
Jim Harvey
Poughkeepsie, NY"
Jim Harvey of Millbrook, NY USA

"It was a honor to serve with you, such an extraordinary and selfless hero. You and your family are always in the prayers and thoughts of 5th Marines veterans. Well done, Marine."
Dan O'Donohue of Camp Pendleton, California

"Lt today marks four years exactly that you lost your life there is no words that i can think because i am sadened yet gratefull my brother served under you in that same humvee and he is still here yet men like you are gone dont get me wrong im glad but i wish all of you guys in that humvee would have returned unharmed but thats just the cost of freedom thank you"
of Los Angeles

"September 27, 2008
To the family of 1st Lt. Matthew D. Lynch:
Matthew gave the ultimate sacrifice and will be held in the hearts of Americans forever. I cannot and will not let our fallen heroes be forgotten. My deepest sympathy to you. "Some gave all."
Peggy Childers
"Don't Let The Memory Of Them Drift Away"
www.IraqWarHeroes.org"
Peggy Childers of Carson City, NV

"Dear Matt,
Not a day goes by that I don't think about you and your heroic sacrifice! God Bless You!"
Jeremy Cloud of Dallas, TX

"You are not forgotten."

"Lt Lynch sir your always with me heart and soul. semper fi, and if anybody in his family reads this can you ask his father to email me i was Lt. Lynch's gunner. saljr85@yahoo.com"
Lcpl. Sal Gonzalez USMC ret. of Nashville TN

"Jennifer V Lynch,

I am not sure if you are mistaken or not but i believe you have the wrong Matthew Lynch. I am a family member and do not know who you are or the Rita or uncle you are referring to who would have been my uncle as well then. Possibly you lost contact with someone named Matthew Lynch, however, this is not the same one. I suggest you look into who you are talking about more, he does not have family members who he did not know very well as you are suggesting. If you were in our family you would have known this."
of New York.

"Lt Lynch, you are not forgotten. Semper Fi.

Whiskey 5"
GySgt Park, C.H. of San Diego

"A brother I never knew...Yet I am sad.
Semper Fi Sir."
Cpl Hudler of Napa, CA.

"This marks the thrid anniversity of my baby brother's death, we struggle through our loses of more family members but we still remember how Rita's uncle holding her close to his heart and my baby brother looking up to me for guidence,,i love you so much and to his dear unit my heart goes out to right now for you losing my best baby brother...."
Jennifer V Lynch of Ottawa Ontario Canada

"My dearest baby brother Mattrew we only knew each other for a short term but the time i had with you it was so full of joy,,you could always make me laugh and smile but your gone now and i know your holding your nieces with you in your arms in God's graces and your always in our hearts and souls,,,we miss you so much my baby brother its just not the same without you here......"
Jennifer V Lynch of Ontario

"My father was a proud veteran,and loved this country with all his heart.Fortunately he was able to return,to live his life and raise a family.Which is the other thing he did so proudly.And my heart cries when I see any of our brave men and women who don't make it back to either have that chance or leave an already existing family.My heart and prayers are with you."
Clifton L. Handley of Roanoke Rapids,N.C. USA!

"I was in Echo Company 2nd Bn 5th Marines 3rd platoon. Lt Lynch was my platoon commander and a very fine one at that. I had the honor of serving with him during OIF I. He will always be in my prayers and never forgoten. Semper Fidelis Sir!"
Sgt. Ryan C. Schatz of Sullivan, MO/ USA

"God Bless you and your family for paying the ultimate sacrifice for your country. You are a hero."
Mother of 12th marine of Mt. Pleasant, IA

"A day doesn't go by that I personally don't feel the pain of losing such a fine officer as Lt Lynch. I knew him for such a short period but he touched my heart forever. The Gates of Heaven are in good hands. Semper Fidelis Brother"
1stSgt D Blanchard of Colfax, WI

"Thank you and god bless for you have paid the ultimate scarific for your country you will be deeply missed! once again, god bless you and your family"
a friend of North Carolina

"SEMPER FI my friend.

M. Koehler USMC 63-67"
M. Koehler of Centennial, CO

"To the Lynch family
Today I thought of your son. I thought of a young man I had never met who touched my husband I so deeply. We had the honor of attending his funeral. It was a beautiful celebration of a life unfinished.
His dedication to this country and to the men he fought beside is a tribute to the kind of family he was raised in. Your son was is and always will be a true American Hero.
Thank you for your service"
Tracy Deck of Greenwixh Ct

"The effect you've had on my life and the examples you've set out will resonate with me until my last breath. I sincerely hope you've found peace."
Mike J of New York, NY

"We'd all be better off if he were with us still....."
Anon. of USA

"Matt - I'm so lucky to have been your friend. You're a true hero and I miss you."
Jeremy of Dallas, TX

"Lt. Lynch you well never be forgotten the marines of W 2\5"
Cpl GUNN of Albuquerque, NM

"2 years later. There are many who still carry the scars of your death but we are healing and moving on. I'll be thinking of you this year on Holloween this year. See you next year."

"Throughout grade school and high school Matt Lynch was a man amongst boys. He was a born leader who had the focus and determination to accomplish whatever he put his mind to. It was an honor to know him. Although he was taken from us way too early I know he was doing what he wanted to do; putting others before himself and protecting our freedom. Matt, I thank you for making the ultimate sacrifice for our country. My thoughts and prayers go out to your family. God bless you."
CT of Flushing, NY (formerly Jericho, NY)

"It's the actions of men like this that make me proud to call myself a Marine.
Semper Fi."
Cpl White of Wichita, KS

"My family visited the Soldier's Healing Field Flag Memorial in Lynchburg, VA on July 1. It was breathtaking to see over 2800 flags waving in the breeze, one for every US soldier who has paid the ultimate price in defending liberty in this current war. Each flag had a yellow ribbon attached "In grateful memory of" the particular soldier's name, giving his branch of service and where he was from. My family sponsored a flag while we were there, and the flag arrived in the mail yesterday. Our flag has Matthew's name on it. We will fly his flag in our front yard as a daily reminder to be grateful for our freedom and for those who have sacrified so much to give us that freedom. We offer our heartfelt gratitude to Matthew's family as well as our condolences."
Dean, Denise and Logan Jones of Roanoke, VA

"Semper Fidelis!!!!"
LCPL NEWMAN of Montana

"12-30-05 HUNTINGTON TOWNHOUSE CANDLE LITE HONORING LONG ISLAND FALLEN SOLDIERS CONTACT MOE FLECTHER 516-889-2203"
moe FLECTHER of ISLAND PARK

"I still think of you and your family everyday, Matty. Can't believe it's been a year. I miss you more than words can say...."
close friend from Duke

"A year has passed -and we send our thoughts to your family -
remembering your loss.
Sandi / Montana"

"Lt. Lynch was my platoon commander in Echo Co. He was a good leader, and he was well liked. I've shared some expereinces with him on and off the battlefield that I will never forget, and always cherrish. He was loved."
Brian Hollingsworth of Cleveland, OH

"As the song says, "If the Army and the Navy ever looked on Heaven's scene, they will find the streets are guarded by United States Marines!" God Bless Marine!"
Lance Corporal Null of Harrisburg, PA - 2/25

"Matt,
You are our HERO in every way. You are deeply missed and we thank you for all you have done for our country. We ALL love you! You are our gaurdian angel now. I love You."
Family member from NY

"To the family of 1LT Matthew Lynch: His 2/5 unit has now returned from its second deployment to Iraq. From deep in my heart, I want to thank Matthew, and the 14 other young heroes who paid the ultimate sacrifice on this tour, for looking down upon my "adopted" Marine in Fox 2/5 and helping to get him home safe. I will be forever grateful. Please accept my condolences. Isn't it a blessing that America has always had young heroes willing to serve and sacrifice to keep us free and safe? May they continue to serve the greatest country on earth. Semper Fi!"
Ted Cagley of Pontiac, Illinois

"I was Matt’s company commander from April 2004 until July 2004 when he served with 1st Battalion, 5th Marines. I knew Matt only for a short time. He had been selected as a combat replacement and came to the company shortly after we had lost two officers. He had been forced to leave the Marines he had served and trained with in 2nd Battalion, 5th Marines and checked in to Company B while we were in Fallujah. As difficult as the circumstances were for him to be the new guy, he handled himself with unbelievable confidence and ability. Matt had an innate ability to keep things in perspective. Certainly things bothered him but he refused to get too upset when things didn’t work. He could be sarcastic and cynical and funny, all at the same time, and for the officers and Marines in Company B he was a welcome addition at a difficult time. Matt made no secret about wanting to return to 2nd Battalion, 5th Marines and about wanting to be with the Marines he had bonded with through almost two years of training and deploying. When we returned in July, he immediately began working to return to 2nd Battalion, even though he had already deployed twice and was under no obligation to return. He volunteered to be part of something bigger than himself and that speaks tremendously about his character. He was a great example to everyone that knew him and I’m sorry I wasn’t able to know him longer."
Major J.E. Smith of Baton Rouge, LA

"God bless you Lt. Lynch, and your family. Thank you for your service to our country and to the cause of freedom."
Tom Zaleski of Pennsylvania

"God bless this Marine and his family. Thank you for your service to the nation. You'll live forever in our hearts."
Jose Arteaga of Miami, FL

"To the family of Lt. Matthew Lynch,
I am so sorry to hear of your loss. I never met Matt, but he was obviously loved and respected. He made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom - and will always be remembered for his bravery.
My thoughts and prayers are with you."
Michael Katz of Cortland, NY

"Lieutenant Lynch, goodbye soldier and thank you. You are my hero."
Bill of Houston, Texas

"Matt, you will always be our hero. Your family will never forget the sacrifice you made us and the rest of America. We love and miss you!"
family member of New York

"Knowing Matt made me a better person. Even if you only met him once, you knew that you were in the presence of greatness. I feel blessed to have known him.
My prayers are with the Lynch family. Matt is now an angel on all of our shoulders."
A.S. of Jericho, NY

"My deepest sympathy, our family has also suffered the loss of a precious life in this battle for freedom. May God bless you and help you through this time. Forever in our hearts a HERO Matthew D. Lynch."
Amy & Aaron Monier of Waterford, MI.

"Thank you brave soldier for sacrificing your today for my children's safer tomorrow. You have our utmost respect and gratitude. May God provide your family with comfort in their time of sorrow. May you forever rest in Heavenly peace. Neither you nor your sacrifice will be forgotten."
a grateful family in Phoenix, AZ

"Semper Fi, Lt. Lynch. Your sacrifice for freedom will never be forgotten, NEVER. I hope to be a fine Marine officer like you someday. God bless you Marine."
Chris 15 years old

"We Will NEVER FORGET !"
Please KNOW so many people share your sadness, and we are remembering your family in your loss and your deep grief. Your HERO, Matthew, will be remembered by name. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. God Bless you ALWAYS. Pat & Sandi Breckenridge from Montana "

"To the family of Matthew;
Our sincerest condolences for your loss. Matthew is a true American hero and will always be remembered for his bravery and sacrifice he gave to our country. Our family has also suffered the loss of my nephew in this battle for freedom. May God bless you during this difficult time."
Vic and Tammy McClain--azquail@att.net of Tucson, AZ

"To the Lynch Family from the Wahl Family. Our family is deeply sadden by the lost of Matthew. An our heart and prays are with your family. We lost our son Gregory 04-03-04, six months ago. God Bless!"
leonard wahl of Valley Stream Long Island

"To the family and friends of 1st Lt. Matthew D. Lynch,

Those we hold most dear, never truly leave us. May you find comfort in love's everlasting connection.

In the Support section of this web site you will find links to many groups that support you at this crucial time. The Marine Comfort Quilt group would be honored to send a quilt to the next of kin. There are many, loving and caring Americans from all over the United States that will never forget the sacrifice that your loved one has made for our Freedom. Please register so we can send you our "Love Stitched Together."

Proud Marine Mom and Proud Member of Marine Comfort Quilts"
Sandra Moudy of Placentia, California

"On behalf of the Childers Family, we send our condolences. We also share your pain and loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with you."
The Family of Lt T.S. Childers, USMC Co. A 1/5 2nd Plt.,KIA 3/21/03 of Powell Wyoming

"RIP Tufelhunden

The Taylors in NC"

"REST IN PEACE TUFELHUNDEN....

THE TAYLORS IN NC

Semper Fi"

"To the friends and family of 1st Lt. Matthew Lynch,

There are no words that can possibly ease your pain but please know that many across this country are grateful to your son and you. His bravery and sacrifice will never be forgotten. Please accept these words as a token of my heartfelt sorrow for your loss.

Respectfully"
Rebecca of Los Angeles

"Matt was truly an inspiration to everyone he came into contact with and will continue to be as we move forward. My thoughts and prayers are with everyone in this time of mourning."
Kristy Nave (Guenther)-Duke '01 of Lake Mary, Florida

"Despite him being a senior and me only being a freshman when I arrived at Duke University, Matt was one of the first people and teammates that I felt comfortable with and enjoyed talking to. He could always make me smile during our 6:30 weight training, even when I hadn't slept and had no desire to be there. He always looked out for his teammates and took his role as a leader and motivator very seriously. When he graduated and left for the USMC, his presence on the team was dearly missed. Now his presence in our lives will also be missed, although never forgotten. For those of us who had the privilege of getting to know Lynch, he will forever remain in our hearts. I love and miss you Lynch."
Jeanne DeWitt of Atherton, Ca

"To Matthew's Family and Friends:

On behalf of the Blanco-Caldas family, we send our sincerest condolences. We share the same loss ... the same pain. Our prayers are with you in this most difficult time and we thank you for your soldier's bravery and sacrifice.

Sincerely,

The Family of Capt. Ernesto M. Blanco-Caldas, 82nd Airborne
KIA Iraq 12/28/2003.
Gloria Caldas (The Big Ern's Mom) of San Antonio, TX
gloria.caldas@banksterling.com"

"To Matthew's Family:
There are no words to express the sorrow we feel for your loss. May God bless you and help you through this time."
Dan and Meg Manninen of San Antonio, Texas

"It doesn't take a hero to order men into battle. It takes a hero to be one of those men who goes into battle."
- General H. Norman Schwarzkopf, 1992

"I swam with Matt at Duke University. Not only was he a gifted swimmer, but a loyal and dedicated friend to all that knew him. He will be missed. My heartfelt prayers go out to all his family and friends. God bless."
J. Marshall Preston of Monterey, California

"Matt was a good friend of my sister and I met him when he attended Duke University and was on the swim team. I am so sorry and disappointed to hear that such a wonderful life has been lost."
Kelly DeWitt of Atherton, CA

"Thank you Matthew Lynch, you will not be forgotten. Your bravery goes beyond words. I want to express my deepest gratitude for your sacrifice. To the family and friends, my prayers and deep condolences in your loss. May God strengthen you from knowing that fellow Americans and people around the world care about you and grieve with you in your loss. God bless you all. A very appreciative fellow American,"
Leo Titus of Grayslake, Illinios

"To the family and friends of 1st Lt. Matthew Lynch:
May God's grace be with you during your time of grief. Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you and we feel your loss and share in your sorrow. Bless Matthew for the sacrifice he has made to make a better life for the rest of us."
The Ford Family of Wells, Nevada

"To the family and friends of 1st Lt. Matthew Lynch:
I am saddened by the loss of your loved one. He will always be remembered as a hero for fighting for freedom. I hope that this website will be a source of comfort and encouragement for you during this difficult time, and in the future as you recall the memories of Matthew, who continues to live on in your heart."
Tim Rivera of Powder Springs, Georgia

Honor them by remembering... Freedom - is their gift to us But his soul goes marching on