Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Marine Lance Cpl. Matthew A. Snyder

20, of Finksburg, Maryland.
Snyder died from a non combat-related vehicle accident in Al Anbar province, Iraq. He was assigned to Combat Service Support Group-1, 1st Marine Logistics Group, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Twentynine Palms, California. Died on March 3, 2006.

Please send information, photos, and corrections for Marine Lance Cpl. Matthew A. Snyder.


Lance Cpl. Matthew A. Snyder
Carroll Co. Marine, 20, killed in Iraq
Contributions to the Families of the Fallen


Leave a message in memory of this servicemember, and/or to the loved ones left behind.

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"Snyder family '
your son Matthew was z true hero for America and Canada, we fellow Canadians thank him for his selfless
act. He will be to me a hero Lest we forget."
Lawrence Noel of Cold Lake Alberta Canada

Lawrence Noel of Cold Lake Alberta Canada

"I was the Marine Staff NCO in Charge of RSS Frederick and I had the Honor to meet this young man and ensure he was prepared for Recruit Training. The Marine Corps was lucky to find him and now as a Retired Marine Gunnery Sergeant I will not ever forget his sacrifice to our country. Semper Fi"
Gunnery Sergeant J. Corvoisier of Orlando Fl

"Happy Birthday Matthew.
July 18, 2012"
Gracie of New York

"you are a hero looking down matthew a. synder and no church,protesters, or insensitive person can change that. please rest in peace knowing your dad is fighting for you after you fighting for him.thank you"
Anthony of Brandon

"All of our service men & women stand up for us & our country. God bless these men & women & their families who sacrifice everything for us. Their bravery is an example all should follow. Words cannot express how angry I feel that these families lose their loved ones & then while trying to grieve & lay them to rest, this church group (which I dont know how they can call themselves a church) protest their bravery. I believe that your son is smiling at you from heaven, telling you he is proud you fought for his good name & the good names of all the men & women who fight for our country. I just wished the supreme court would have seen it this way, through the eyes of the ones laying their loved one to rest. GOD BLESS OUR TROOPS. All of those who thru-out history & currently fight for our freedom. Thank you to all our troops & their families who make such a big sacrifice for America!"
Tara Knight of Oklahoma. AMERICA



You may access the links above for article and photos which tell the story of Matt and clarify some issues regarding his funeral. Please remember Matt as he should be remembered, and not as 'some topic to discuss in a forum' Thank you. Below, is the story of Matt.

Remembering the real Matthew Snyder
By George Matysek

Lance Corporal Matthew Snyder
It’s a sad reality that Lance Corporal Matthew Snyder has become linked to the Westboro Baptist Church.

The 20-year-old Marine was killed nearly five years ago when his Humvee overturned in Iraq. During his funeral, Westboro protesters held anti-gay and anti-Catholic signs outside St. John in Westminster – inexplicably insisting that Snyder’s death was part of God’s vengeance on America for its tolerance of homosexuality.

Snyder was Catholic, but not gay.

Albert Snyder, Matthew Snyder’s father, sued the Rev. Fred W. Phelps and members of his Westboro congregation, seeking financial compensation for emotional distress, defamation and other injuries. The case has made it all the way to the Supreme Court and is expected to be decided this year.

Working on a report in last week’s Catholic Review about the heartwrending story, I could clearly hear Jane Perkins’ passion as Matthew Snyder’s maternal aunt told me how difficult it has been that people think of her beloved nephew only in connection with the ugliness of Westboro. They don’t know about what a great human being he was, she said.

I invited Perkins to write a reflection on the real Matthew Snyder. She graciously agreed, and I’m honored to share it with you here.

Matt is my Godchild. This is an important relationship, one which I treasure still, and in an instant can be brought to the moment I was asked to be Godmother to Matt.

I love the photo of Matt, with his bald little head, being held in my arms that Christening Day. Living in another state, I was not blessed to share as much time with Matt and his sisters as my siblings were, but we did pretty well, nevertheless. Julie and the children would come to visit overnight and my family would do the same with her. And of course, our family is very close, so there are always parties, graduations and sacraments to celebrate which brought all of the families and cousins together for fun and laughter.

Through the years, my thoughts of Matt run like a picture movie reel. Seeing him for the first time, holding him at the Baptismal font, watching him waddle over to my car when I gave him his first birthday gift – a giraffe clothes tree that each of the nieces and nephews were given on their first birthday. I see him with red painted feet at 18 months, in his kitchen, walking over and over again across white paper, in order for me to be able to make gifts for friends of mine. I see him in his little red shorts and bow tie, twisting and dancing at my wedding (he was 3). I didn’t get to see him play his sports when he was little, but my albums have his team photos, swinging a bat, holding a soccer ball. I think of the talents he possessed: black ink sketch drawings, pottery figures, his love for anything baseball amidst arrowheads and precious stones.

I see him in his bathing suit running around at his 8th birthday as we celebrate summer, and Matt. I see him in videos talking to the camera and telling the world all there is to know. I see a little 10-year-old boy driving 3 hours to his baby cousin’s Baptism. Matt arrives and presents a hand-created posterboard that had drawings of each of the important items that are a part of the Baptism ceremony—the oil, the white cloth, the candle…each with its meaning special for 1-month old Catie Jane. He’s older, and chooses St. Sebastian as his Confirmation saint—Matt was unique in his thoughts and in his actions.

He comes into my backdoor and says “Hi, Aunt Jane, I was hoping you’d have barbecue!” I hear him laughing at the bonfire in the back woods. I see him dunking his cousins in the pool. I hear him laughing and playing games with the ‘kids.”

In our family, Matt is the oldest male cousin, so he is a role model, and he did it well. Although from start to finish, the cousins were ‘13 stairsteps’ little more than a year apart from each other, the oldest were never too old, or too cool or too busy to take time and have FUN with the younger ones. They rolled down hills, stared at clouds, rode wagons, took walks, played games, hiked a football, roasted marshmallows, told ghost stories, trekked through the woods and played football on Thanksgiving. They went fishing, body surfing, told jokes and went to the Baltimore zoo together. I see Matt sitting on the curb, as the July 4th parade marches by. I see Matt living life to the fullest, always smiling. I see Matt laughing so hard, he could be crying.

I hear Matt on the phone telling me he joined the Marines. I say, “Matt, I know you wanted to surprise me, but I can’t say I am surprised. I’m proud of you. When do you leave?” Matt was excited, ready and growing up. He was not 18. That fall, before he left, he came to Lancaster and we met in the parking lot of Dutch Wonderland—we both knew where it was, because when Matt was little, our families would meet there for the day and have fun together. We drove to Good & Plenty for a family style lunch. I told everyone at the table, this is my nephew and he is leaving for boot camp. Matt was always humble, and quietly thanked the strangers for their good wishes. Later I thought, maybe we should have gone somewhere less crowded, that we could have spent more alone time.

Matt loved everything about his Marine life—there were struggles, of course, but he was so proud of his accomplishments, such as when he made ‘marksman.’ He was supposed to be deployed much earlier than he did, but playing soccer, he broke his leg in two areas and had to recoup.

When he flew back from 29 Palms, I was in Baltimore, so I wanted to go with my sister to pick him up. Here was this young man, whom I had not seen too often since he returned from boot camp (very lean from the rigors) and now, he is hobbling on crutches and still grabbed his duffel bag and carried it along. He was the Marine we knew he would be—strong, confident and still, humble.

I see Matt carrying the birthday cake, in his fatigues, for my grandmother—his great grandmother who is 98. I see him with his new camera that he is taking with him to Iraq. He is so excited. He is like a kid in a candy store. He has fun acting silly and taking pictures with his cousins. Through the years I always ask him, what do you think you want to do? He has dreams—maybe re-enlisting, maybe going to Australia to be a photographer, maybe something with cars, maybe…..

Matt was a friend to everyone—to this day, we hear stories from strangers to us, but friends to Matt, who tell the story of a good friend who was there when needed the most. And that is how Matt was a child—he was one of the smallest kids, but not afraid to stand up for the underdog. And that is how Matt ended up in the humvee—he went overseas in a different MOS, but there was a need in the security convoy, and Matt knew there was a job to be filled, so he volunteered.

That is LCpl. Matthew Snyder. Not the face next to evil. Not the subject of a lawsuit. Not the Marine with a so-called ‘ruined funeral.’ He is Matt. He is LCpl. Matt Snyder whose funeral was attended by so many who loved him and by so many who never knew him but came to honor his service. He lived like so many other kids in America, and who is and will always be loved. And that is how Matt should be remembered, identified, seen and heard."
Jane Perkins of Boyertown, PA

"I read on the site that Matthew wasn't even gay. I do think this ought to be pointed out loud and clear - that this crazy baptist group is targeting ALL funerals of fallen servicemen because they think their deaths are punishment for American tolerance and acceptance of a lifestyle choice. It seems very strange - why would our loving, forgiving Christian God choose to punish anyone anyway? And why doesn't this group think that God is instead punishing, say car crash victims or fallen firemen? Why servicemen? It is such a twisted logic I can't believe they are really Christians but maybe they are a cult."
Bo of Poland

"I was raised in a baptist church and one thing i know from years of studing scripture is that God is love and does not hate anyone or anything he made. I think the Westboro Babtist Church needs to do some studing of their own and learn that that are trying to play God and disifer whats right and wrong and stop. God bless you. I hope for the best for your family. Thanks."
amber of sapulpa, oklahoma

"As a Christian and a memeber of a Baptist Church I would like to say I am so sorry for your loss and for what you have had to indure from the members of that so called church. No Christian would inflict such pain. I am appalled at their actions at your sons funeral and the things they have said to you. Please know that your, and your sons sacrifice is appreciated. Your son is a hero. God loves you and your son. I pray that God will lift you up and grant you the peace that only he can give."
E.L. of Mississippi

"I can't believe anyone could be so crude as to do something like this...let alone a "so called" church! I thank your son for serving our great Country and pray that you win the case in the Supreme Court. My words cannot bring back your son but maybe with prayers, we can win and get these jokers off the street and away from the families of our brave troops. God bless all of you..."
Barbara Frame Love of WV, USA

"I think of you often and you’ll be on my mind this Sunday when I wish our country a Happy Birthday. I know our Independence is preserved because of the sacrifices you have made. I have the freedom to celebrate our Independence because of you. God Bless you and Semper Fi!!! Happy Independence Day in Heaven Matt!"
Gracie of New York

"i personal knew matt and served with him, and i miss him so much even today, i have pictures of us, and man i miss him, he was the most life loving man you could ever find, to family, friends and all thos who served with him, we were absolutley blessed to spend even a minute with him...god bless you,love you and miss you duey"
greg dutcher of mayfield ny

"As memorial weekend approaches I wanted to leave a note, and remind you that you’re still not forgotten. Semper Fi."
Old Man of Portand, Oregon

""I am so sorry to for your lost, he is a true hero!!! It made me sick to my stomach to hear that those people that showed up at his service and did that. It does not matter if he was gay, straight, black, white, or purple!!! He went to fight for our country and if those people really went to church then they should have been holding flags and rasing their heads high to see a true hero being brought home!!!! He is watching over all of you right now smiling at you for defending his right to be whoever he wants to be!!!!"
Heather M. Brown of White Hall, MD

"My deepest condolences go out to you. Like you I lost my son in Iraq this past June due to a humvee roll-over while volunteering for a mission to escort convoys...my son was also a gunner. My heart aches every minute of every day but I can not come close in knowing your on going pain of witnessing these disgusting protesters while your hero is laid down for his final rest. I thank God that our time was not disrupted by such abuse while our hero was being honored. I watch the videos in total disbelief...how can our country even let this happen? Your fight against these people are very honorable and I pray for you all each day...stay strong and know that you are in my heart. God Bless, The Proud Mom of CPL. Casey L. Hills"
Tammy Hills of Salem, Il. United States

"To Benbona of Tampa Florida,
This is not an opinion colum. This site is to remember fallin hereos. Men and women who are brave enough to stand up and defend this country so u can voice your opinion. My brother did not die like 40,000 other americans each year, he died seving overseas as gunner doing convoy escort security, which he volunteered for. As far as your opinions feel free to post them somewhere else on the internet, i would appreciate it if you didnt voice them here. I look at this page to remember my brother, and i dont like seeing things like that. Thank you, Tracie Snyder Sister of LCpl Matthew Snyder"
Tracie Snyder of MD

"I am so sorry for the loss of your son. I served in the Marine Corps. You fight for what you believe in. I support you 100%. May your son rest in peace and may God bless you and your family. Semper Fi!"
Mary Ann Reese of Southington, Connecticut

"To the Snyder family,
What happened at your sons funeral is absolutly vile! I am deeply sorry for your loss. The vast majority of Americans are thankful for his service and so am I. God bless you. SEMPER FI!"
Marcus Bayly of Kirkland, WA

"I was not born in america, i am irish person who has been in the armed forces of ireland, i have lived in this great country for over 20 yr's,my wife and three chldren are american. I owe my sucess in life to the ideal of the american dream, i have worked hard, paid my taxes and dues,i have voted in all elections i am alowed to, the thought of my sons or daughter giving the ultimate sacrifice to the country too dear is not a good thought, but i would support thier beliefs and ideals. i have felt the hurt and fear brought on by religious "people" in thier acts of despicable actions, I am not by any means a wussy pro life born again,neo pacifist, i am however a real person who understands that when i am threatened, that to not respond is futile,i totally agree with the founding fathers of this great nation that everyone is entitled to freedom of speech, but to be able to besmear,besmerch and demean the life of a young man or woman who gives his or her life in defending those same values that gave us those freedoms from an oppressing empire, is most obvious that what we have now is not what so many brave people gave thier lives for. to condone the degrading acts of these babtists in how they are dishonering the brave young people in our armed forces,is disgusting in itself, i only ask one question,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, where are our veterns??????????? of ww2 , korea, vietnam, iraq 1, iraq 2, somalia, afganistan, did they all die in vain,to allow these ignorant neo natzi-christians to desecrate the graves of soldiers, veterns stand up!!!!!!!!!!!,show up!!!!, to sum up , i can ask another question, in the new york city st patrick's day parade, the nycfd carried 343 huge american flags in front of thier members to signify the 343 members killed in the line of duty on sept 11th, can we not get 343 veterens or any civic minded patriotic americans to carry 343 american flags at the next funeral that the baptists plan to slur????????????"
micheal kearney of pleasantville new york

"I saw what happened on the news today and I just wanted to say that Im sorry about what happened at your sons memorial. I know there is freedom of speech but there are times you dont say certain things at certain times. When I saw the video on the news it made me mad that people can have such a lack of respct. I couldn't imagine what I would do if that happened to me. But the thing that I thought was the worst was the disrespectful signs because any one who servs in the millitary should get respect. Im sorry I cant do a whole lot to help you, I would help you pay he money your supposed to pay but I'm only 15 and don't have a whole lot of money. But I hope that reading this lets you know that there are people that feel bad for you and your son. I felt like I had to do something to try to help so I wrote this."
Brandon Payne of Somerset Ohio

"Mr. Snyder, I was saddened to read about the loss of your son and what happened at his memorial. Your son is a great man and I am so thankful for his protection of our great country; he gave the ultimate sacrifice. The members of the church should be ashamed and held accountable for their actions. I truly believe God will hold them accountable. Unfortunately there is evil in this world and it is usually hidden. They say they represent the church, but they do not represent God's will. My prayers to you and your family. I will also pray that the spirit of God touches these individuals and allows them realize their actions were not only ignorant, but not of God.
My thoughts are with you and your family; please know that my family and I support you 100%"
Mrs. Bob McCoy of Alturas, CA

"I would like to extend my deepest sympathy to this family. My Father served this country in the USMC for 35 years. He was a WWII, Korea,China marine,D.I., and " 8th & I" Top Sargent. He fought for the right for even "idots" to have freedom of speech. However he would always say," These people show disrespect to the military until they need us and they are the ones to scream for help first and the loudest to save them." Semper Fi!"
K. Pearson of New Hampshire

"I am appalled at the behavior of these people from Kansas. "Thank God for dead soldiers"? This young man made an absolute selfless & unselfish sacrifice, the "ultimate sacrifice" for the good will and the future well being of others, whether or not others see it this way. (I am especially pointing my finger at the Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kansas!)Some Congregation and Leadership. Thank You, Mathew A. Snyder- and to your Family for your sacrifice. There are some of us who still believe in the very principles that founded this beautiful country. Maybe the "Haters of Our God and Our US of A should go live else where and appreciate those other lifestyles and go hate over there! This Easter I will especially be thinking of you Matthew, and all Our Fallen Brothers and Sisters of Our Great Military and the Family's of their's as well. God Bless You All! God Bless the USA!"
Michael A. of Center City, MN, USA

"I am so sorry to hear of your loss of your son. I appreciate his service to our country. I find it appalling that anyone would do the things these "so called Christians" did. I wish for you nothing but the best for your future. Thank you."
sharon of Langley, Wa. USA

"God Bless all who have given the ultimate sacrifice so we can be free and keep safe those fighting still....To the Snyder family, you have already given so much. I hope all these message hold your family up when some will try bring you down X"
Sarah Gerwin of BG, OH, USA

"Have you heard the tragic story of the harassment at a Marine’s funeral? This case Snyder v. Phelps will be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court this fall. The family needs your help! Please consider donating $10 to the family of Marine Matthew Snyder whose funeral was harassed and picketed by a hate group. If the plaintiff’s family can get donations - no matter how small - from each person who cares and wants to see this case get decided at the U.S. Supreme Court this fall, it will go along way. Here is a link to CNN’s coverage of this story on March 30: http://www.cnn.com/2010/CRIME/03/30/westboro.baptist.snyder/index.html?hpt=T2

The family needs to raise at least $36K b/c the 4th Circuit ordered them on Friday to pay the defendants court costs! So, we are trying to get the word out to as many Veterans and other people who may want to donate/help, because every donation – no matter how small - will help will all the costs needed to take this to the Supreme Court. Unfortunately, because this is not a non-profit, donations are not tax deductable. But donations can be sent through the website - www.matthewsnyder.org or made payable to "Al Snyder Fund" and sent to the lead lawyer (Sean Summers’) law firm at the following address: Barley Snyder LLC, 100 East Market Street, York, PA 17401.
FOR MORE INFORMATION – PLEASE CONTACT: Sean Summers (lead lawyer for plaintiffs) ssummers@barley.com; telephone 717 -852-4997"
Julie of York, PA

"God bless you and your son. We extend our prayers and sympathies for the loss of this wonderful young man.
Matthew is a credit to his family, his community and his country. May he be remembered as the honorable young man he was and may America always honor its fallen service members. God bless America, Matthew A. Snyder and his family."
Steve Lemonakis of Smithsburg, MD

"As a member of a Baptist Church here in Utah, I am so sorry, embarrassed, distressed that members of this particular Baptist Church in your state thought they were being good disciples of our Lord when they behaved so wickedly and evil at your son's funeral. Please accept my apologies, my condolences and my prayers that you and your family will not pay any penalty for your battle in the courts. God Bless Bill O'Reilly for helping you and your courage in this battle so that no other families would have to go through this."
B J Gayler of Park City, Utah

"We are terribly sorry for how you and your family were treated at your son's funeral; this is not what he was fighting for; he fought for peace. Also, freedom of speech has a very important responsibility attached to it, and this was abused by those protestors. If any of our Canadian soldiers' families' were harrassed during any of our soldier's funerals, I know Canadians would be outraged by this. Your son was a brave and courageous hero who did more for his country than any of those protestors will ever do in their entire lives, so be very, very proud of that. Both of our countries are free because of soldiers like your son; thank God for them."
Tess of Victoria, CANADA


"Semper Fi my brother. Although your boots on earth sit empty your foot prints continue to march through our lives. You have made a difference and for that we all thank you. My thoughts, prayers, and support are with your parents."
Steve (USMC, Desert Storm Vet) of Kansas, US

"Please know that we are praying for your family to find peace and closure.
I am a christian and regardless of what Phelps says, christians DO NOT act the way he and his group do. Yes, like Christ we hate the sin, BUT NOT THE SINNER. And there is no sin in serving your country...just consider Joshua's Army. And your sons service wasn't just for country, but for God and Country. May he find rest and comfort in the Arms of his Lord."
George Fisher of Lewes, DE United State of America

"To Mr. Snyder --

I feel terrible about what you had to go through.. it is unbelievable that there would be protesters at your son's funeral. A funeral is sacrosanct.. I just saw the rest of your story on Fox News, and I am thrilled that Bill O'Reilly is going to pay your legal costs.

No matter what the thoughts about your son, he is a hero, and should never have gone through the protests at his funeral."
David Figueroa of Houston, TX/USA

"To the Snyder family--Your son will always be a hero in my eyes. God loves you all and so do I..Thank you Matthew for your heroic service and defending freedom.."
SMSgt (Ret) Norzell Harris of Yokota AB Japan

"To the Snyder Family-Please accept my heartfelt condolences on the loss of your son. Your son is and always will be a TRUE American. Too many people in this country forget the price so many have paid to insure the freedoms we enjoy now. I wish everyone in your family strength and courage during this difficult time"
John C. Walline of Chattanooga, TN United States of America

"To the Snyder Family:
My heartfelt condolences for the loss of your beloved, Matthew. While I wish not to mention "them", please stay strong in the face of the horrid, minority of extremists claiming their awful acts are due to religion. Americans support you. Our Prayers of support are with you,"
Katie Fitzpatrick of Fort Lauderdale, FL USA


"To the Snyder Family- I promise you, that myself and my brothers will fight Phelps at every turn on the ground, and pray that the supreme court recognizes the idiocy of the appeals court ruling. God Bless you, and God Bless the memory of your son Matthew."
James Beau Edwards of Meridian, MS.

"I hope the SCOTUS decision supports the lower court. Our thoughts are with you, Matthew and your family. May he rest in peace."
Lisa Stander Horel of Santa Clara, CA

"Dear Snyder family,
For the last four years I've been holding off to tell you how I feel about your loss. I don't have the words to tell you. I will tell you this, Matthew is living within us everyday. I am proud very proud of him. I push myself everyday to be a better leader and a Marine to ensure I train my Marines to my best abilities for the opportunity your son has given us by protecting our freedom. He will always be in my prayer."
Matthew Snyder's recruiter, Gunnery Sergeant Huda of 1st Marine Division, Camp Pendleton

"Dear, Snyder family. I don't even know where to start. I was on the same Security Platoon with Matt and have many pictures of him in Iraq. Matt was the funiest person I have ever met a great. brother. He stood ip all night with me in Iraq when my son was born. I miss him dearly. He has never left my heart. Please contact me with an address so I can send you the pictures. Nestor Escobar Esco_nest@yahoo.Com"
Nestor Escobar of Pacoima Ca 91331

""To the family of Matthew A. Snyder ,I am so sorry for the loss of your love one.He died a hero.May you know the peace and understanding that only comes from God. Hopefully we will all meet in Heaven one day where we will rest in the arms of Jesus. If you need someone to pray with you or talk to please call or write my pastor at Gateway Community Church,Rev John B Pearrell 11677 Brown Bridge Rd. Covington Ga. 30016 phone 770-787-1015""

"I only recently read the story about Matthew A. Snyder and my heart goes out to you and his family. Matthew, may you rest in peace and that your name be honoured."
Richard Dorn of London United Kingdom

"February 28, 2009
To the family of Lance Cpl. Matthew A. Snyder:
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"
Peggy Childers of Carson City, NV

"i have the same name as you!!!!"
matt of illinoise

"I never knew your son. It's a shame that i had to hear about him because of that excuse of a church which i wont name here. Your son has similarities with Matthew Shepard, taken from this life far too soon. Don't listen to people who obviously have nothing better to do than to spew out not just hate but incorrect facts. Whether your son was gay or straight, he fought for America, a country i'm proud to be allied with. With love,Andrew, over the rainbow from OZ."
andrew peter collins of melbourne victoria australia

"Dear Snyder family,
I would just like to wish you my most deepest feelings for the loss of your son, and although it may not mean much, I hope that your lawsuit goes very well against the church, what they did to you all is unbelievable. When my friend sent me the news video, I was completely blown away that people like them could possibly do that to you. Again I am so sorry for your loss, I'm sure your son was a fine soldier, and an even better man. Best wishes"
Jason Gray of Pomona California

"I would like to say sorry for your lose. I'm glad you had enough pride,strength,love,etc for your son and the rest of our soldiers, to stand up for what is right. I'm sorry you had to deal with westboro church during the funeral. I was at St.John school at the time. Your victory in the lawsuit means alot to me. My uncle got back from Iraq, and he was spit on by them at the airport. People like you yourselfs, and your son, are persuading be to be a Marine after i graduate from Delone in 2011. Thank you, you have my support. God bless our troops!"
Tyler Bowman of Westminster, Maryland

"Dear Snyder family,
I would like to give my deepest condolences to you all, for the tragic death of your son. I am a citizen of the United Kingdom, and believe me when i say this, myself, and the majority, if not the whole nation feel disgusted at what these people do. They are going to hell, they are sick, twisted people, and have no respect for their fellow man.
I would like to say that Matthew Snyder, every American soldier, and every person who serves their country in the military are heroes and they shall never be forgotten.
Your son is truly a hero.
Once again deepest condolences."
Anonymous of Worcestershire, West Midlands UK

"brother it feels like yesterday we were drinking beer together and i was taking care of your broke leg i miss you and love you you will forever be with me Semper Fi"
CPL. Brandon Fender of statesville NC

"My wife and I give our deepest condolences to the family of Matthew A. Snyder. While we never met Matthew, we are positive that he was a hero, just like his father. A man who stood up for what he believes!"
Joe & Ruth of Longview, WA. 98632

"May God have no mercy on the moron baptist whom showed such blatant disrespect to a young man who served his country with honor courage and commitment. Such disgusting protest of ignorance by hypocritical morons should be against the law. My heart is with the Snyder family and a special thank you to a courageous young man. God bless."
Jo of Raytown, Missouri

"Matthew, you would be so very proud of your father! God bless."
Lauren of Plainville, CT. U.S.A

"My stepson has just enlisted and will be shipping out in January. I saw the report of your lawsuit on Slate.com and wanted to express my support. It is sad that you lost your son but horrifying that a bunch of twisted people should take that loss and turn it into a weapon of hatred against you. God bless you and keep you in your time of grief."
Elizabeth of Buxton, ME

"Thank goodness someone finally took on Fred Phelps and his hate mongoring morons!!! God bless you, I thank your son for his service. The moron patrol came here to Laramie Wy for Matthew Sheppard's funeral and it was so disgusting. I hope his church is bankrupted!"
Jeanette of Laramie, WY

"Matthew, your heart is at peace and you can rest assured that you left this world a better place just for being you.

To Matthew's Family,
My sincerest condolences go out to all of you. I'm proud to be an American because there are people of honor, like you, who bore cruelty and hatred with grace and dignity. There is no end to the good in humanity. Please know we are all diminished by your loss and you are not alone.

God Bless You"
Frank F. of Philadelphia, PA.

"God Bless you and give you strength for your loss. As a vet, and an American, I pray for peace and the day when the lives of our young men, sons and brothers, will no longer be lost. When the birds sing, and the trees change color, when I hold my daughter and walk down the street; when I go fishing and when I vote...I will remember your son. I must also say thank you for holding ignorance accountable with your lawsuit. On behalf of all humanity, I apologize for their inconsiderate, mis-directed, dis-respectful and shameful behavior."
Marc Shelton of Bartlesville, Oklahoma

"This is for Mr Albert Snyder I just saw on MSN that you sued the protester at Matthew funeral Thank you. Matthew and other died for that right but I do not believe they were right these men and women need our support they do not need to be reading or seeing on the news the protesters and than they think that we dont support them I support them with my heart and soul and included them in my prayers every night so thank you from the bottom of my heart And may God Bless you and your family and all of our Armed Forces"
Doris Wharton of Charlottesville Va

"To Mathew Snyder for his Bravery and Courage. From a mother of a marine to another.I give you my deepest sympathy for your loss to you and your family may GOD continue to BLess you, you are in my prayers.I just want to say we dont always understand why things happen the way they do but just have faith in GOD and know that there is a reason for everything that happens thats why we are in this world as we know as it to be today. GOD has spoke of people like The Phelp's and has warned us about them its happened in the past and will happen in our future. Just rememeber to keep good faith in GOD who gave your son as a gift from him be thankful for each day you had with him he was truley America's gift. I can tell that was VERY LOVED and a joy to have around.Blessed is Mathew the son of Loving parents for I know this to be true because GOD is with you, just as GOD blessed you with such a good son as Mathew.I know that GOD had a hand in helping your family win your case against the Phelps and Westboro Baptist Church awarding damages of $11million, just has he helps all the people that love him. Money is something that you can always make some more of maybe not $11million for us average Americans is alot but I know that it can never buy you your day of Grieve that you were entitled to say your goodbyes to your son in peace, no matter how many millions you got. You just got to think maybe Mathew was given a chance to give you one last gift and it could have just been that $11 million. If you get it,I hope that is shared with the whole Family as Mathew probably would have wanted it. This is a blessing sent from GOD that I know this family is going to be fine with no worries of future appeals GOD is with you, dont let your gaurd down and keep the Faith with the LORD OUR GOD. Most of us average Amercicans dont see that kind of money in a lifetime dont let it be the root of all evil do as the BIBLE says and you will OK. I know that this is a Marine thing but I got to do it, I'm shouting this for Mathew to hear "UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS SEMPER FIDELIS UHH RAHH, WE LOVE YOU".Mathew will be MISSed and we thank CPL. MATHEW SNYDER FROM THE BOTTOM OF OUR HEARTS FOR STANDING UP FOR OUR FREEDOM IN OUR COUNTRY WHICH WE ONLY HAVE BECAUSE OF GOOD MEN LIKE YOUR SON, again everyone read this outloud shout it like "UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS TO CPL.SNYDER "SEMPER FIDELIS UHH,RAH,UHH RAHH".
Proud mother of a MARINE Cpl. Andrew Daniel Wallace leaving for Combat in a couple of months based in San Deigo, Calif."

"I am appalled at the ignorance of all the Phelps hillbilly clan. It disgusts me that the Phelps clan hide under the First-Amendment with their rebel-rousing hatred. I don't know what God they are talking about, but my God loves us all. Let's hope that the lawsuit will bleed them into irrelevance and hang them out to dry. My guess is that the Westboro Baptist Church clan are rejected interbreeding hillbillies who don't have a clue about class and sophistication. Put your dentures in Daisy Mae Roper and Little Abner Fred Phelps --- sometimes a brain works better when there's something in it.

If you want to hear how really outrageous Westboro Baptist Church is you should listen to this 1 minute talk radio clip from the VFW's radio show, The National Defense.

Here's the link: http://www.vfw.org/resources/leveld/Audio/soldiersdeath.wma

Also, there's an 18-minute clip that is well worth the download. Check out the Phelps Watch here on the bottom right navigation: http://www.vfw.org/index.cfm?fa=news.levelc&cid=2955&tok=1

Again, this is from the Veterans of Foreign Wars talk radio show called "The National Defense" ---- They first exposed the Phelps family back in 2005."
Gloria of Kansas

"It's disgusting that protesters picket a funeral! If the protesters want to object to the US involvement in Iraq, then picket their congressman or George W. Bush and not on a family. To the protesters, please leave families alone to bury loved ones. You're presence only hurts them. I support the Snyder family in they're civil action to help stop any further hurt to other families who might have to bury a loved one. The protesters are despicable and if they want to protest, they have the right but are targeting the wrong target so are clearly stupid. RIP Matthew"
Simon Hassett of Melbourne Australia

"Dear Mr. Snyder and family; Thank you for stepping up and making these protesters accountable for their egregious actions.
Our thoughts and prayers are with you. Matthew, thank you for your service and welcome home. Semper Fi. H. Morris(USMC 1964-1968)"
H Morris of Jackson, MI

"I had the pleasure of meeting your Marine. He came home with my Marine one weekend, Lcpl Brandon Fender, during their time at Camp Lejeune. My thoughts and prayers are with you. May God Bless You and Your Family and Thank You!"
Donna Reavis of Statesville, NC

"Dear Mr. Snyder & family, Please accept my most sincere condolences for both Matthew's loss of life and the actions afterwards of a bunch of lawless and cruel hoodlums. Actons such as theirs is, I believe, treasoness since they are doing their best to demoralize our great country's leadership and it's soldiers during a time of war. Acts of treason during wartime are punishable by death. These people should be put on trial. I hereby volunteer to fire the first volley. Yes, I am a christian & in my opinion people such as "Reverend" Fred Phelps & his followers
are the false prophets the Bible warns us of. In spite of their Bible thumping they must have not read in the book of Isaiah God's warning to those who would take His glory from him for their own use.
God be with you and your family and all of those in service to this great nation of ours. I am a U.S. Army veteran"
Joe Nonemaker of Quakertown, PA/ U.S.A.

"To the Snyder family, As a 16 year Marine and three time Iraq veteran, I would like to send my condolences for your loss. I truly wish that in the near future, our congress gets something correct by passing laws to stop protests at all funerals. I know many Marines who gave the ultimate sacrifice and I can tell you that I am very glad that I have never witnessed one of these protests in real life because I am afraid I would find myself behind bars for my actions. I am very sorry for your loss and remember your family members will be in our thoughts and prayers forever. SEMPER FI."
Keith of Yuma, AZ

"May you now rest in Peace"
Joan of San Francisco, CA/USA

"Thank God for the freedom I enjoy in this awsome country. Thank Goodness for the wisdom that was so freely shared with me not to abuse that freedom. I pray that God holds your family in the same loving arms that hold your son. Thankyou for his, and your sacrifice. I am a fundemental Babtist Christian who is ashamed and angry that a so called institution of God could do such an horrible act towards anybody and say it was in the name of my God.Their actions are a shamefull. My heart broke into tear filled prayer for your family. God bless you. And God keep the soldiers still protecting our freedoms."
Missy Olson of Sarasota, Fl., U.S.A

"To the family of Matthew Snyder,
I was the Marine representative who informed the Snyder family of Matthew's death. Lance Corporal Snyder who I came to know as "Matthew" truly was a special Marine, brother, son, and friend. It was my privilege to be able to be a part of the celebration of his life. I sincerely thank his Mom Julie and his Sisters, Sarah and Traci."
Gunnery Sergeant John A. DeTota II of Al Asad, IRAQ

"He is a hero who gave the greatest sacrifice for his family and his country. Without the sacrifice of your son and those who have fallen before him, we would have no country, and no freedom. How dare anyone compromise his honor!"
Catherine of Phoenix, AZ

"Dear Snyder Family,
I am a Christian and I, too, am against abortion and homosexuality, but I would NEVER protest to a family who has lost their loved one. I lost my grandson, who was a Marine, Lance Corporal Robert L. Moscillo on May 1, 2006 from an IED explosion in Iraq, very close to where you lost your son. I can honestly say that I know how you feel. I cannot understand a group who called themselves Christians could do such an un-Christian act. My Jesus would never approve of such a deed. My heart goes out to you. I pray God's mercy on those people and I pray that they get down on their knees and seek God's true will for their lives. God bless you and your family. I will be praying for all of you, now that I know of this incident."
Doris Dawson-Smith of Oceanside, CA, USA

""This isn't about the war, it isn't about homosexuality. A heartbroken, grieving father simply wanted to bury his son. May God forgive the protestors that won't even respect a dead boy." May we as a country honor all who have fought for our country rather they are gay or straight, they are HEROS. May Matt rest in peace and may the family find peace at this time."
Todd of Raleigh, NC USA

"My love, prayers and thoughts are with you."
Kath of Brisbane, Australia

"Dear Mr. Snyder, I as a God fearing christian man am appalled at the senseless abuse that was heaped on you at your son's funeral, please do not think for one minute that all christian people believe the way that those so called christians do. Your son's death was an American tragedy, but he did not die in vain, he died in the service of the worlds greatest country, his own!
May the Lord God greatly bless you and comfort you in your loss."
B. D. Wiltfong of Jamul, CA, USA

"My thoughts and prayers are with you in this difficult time. Your son is truly one of Americas Greatest and will always be remembered in my heart and lots of others as nothing less then a TRUE HERO!! God bless."
Wendy of Warner Robins, GA

"Thank you for your courageous fight to bring these lepers to justice, Snyder family. This group protested at the funeral of our son, Cory Palmer, on May 21, 22, 2006. We thank God daily for the protection we received from our small city, pride of southern Delaware. Seaford's police, fire, ambulance squads worked together with police and fire squads all over the state and surrounding areas in Maryland to keep these hate mongers away from the church proper.

We applaud you for your efforts, and pray that an appeal on their part will be met with another appeal from you and your family.

Godspeed and Semper Fidelis! The family of Cpl. Cory Leonard Palmer, USMC, DOW May 6, 2006."
Danna Palmer of Seaford, DE 19973


"Dear Mr. Synder and family: I just heard about what happened at Matthew's funeral. I offer you my deepest sympathy and I also thank you for giving us Matthew to defend our freedom....Very sincerely yours, Carol"
Carol Seymour of Linden, New Jersey

"Dear Mr. Snyder and your family,
I saw a news piece on my local station today, about your lawsuit againt the church that protested at Matthew's funeral. The depth of my outrage is immense. I am behind you, Mr. Snyder. I am a Christian, my faith is the most important part of my life, and I absolutely believe those church members are not acting to the glory of God. At best they are misguided, at worst they are not living their Christianity as God wants them to do. I have a son in the USAF, and know so many who are serving in Iraq, and I pray daily for all our service men and women. These brave, selfless people stand in each of our places to protect our liberties and this country. But our Lord does not in turn then expect American citizens to turn against these heroes. Please stay strong in your fight, and find peace and comfort in knowing that your son was indeed a HERO, by serving for his country, and its people. I THANK MATTHEW AND YOU FOR YOUR GREATEST SACRIFICE."
Jennifer Wilson of Lancaster PA USA

"Dear Mr. Snyder:
I read about your lawsuit in my local paper today and I just wanted to let you know that I hope you win. What that church did wasn't very "Christian". Your son fought for freedom for all of us and deserves our respect. Thank you for your son and good luck with your fight. In support of you and your son."
Chrissy Sinclair of Rock Hill, SC / USA

"To the Synder family,

Im am truly sorry about your son. I dont think i have ever been more angry in my life about what had happened to you son and family. As a 23yr old LCpl in the Marines stationed in DC i know i got the luck of the draw because im stateside. But it sickens me so much that they could do this at a funeral, esp because i am from reisterstown and my family now lives in Taneytown. If they dont like the war thats fine, if they dont like the politicians even better do something and vote but dont take it out on the men and women who fight and defend the right to run your mouth. If there is anything i can do besides offer my prayers to you and pray you win this lawsuit i will. Your son is a true Hero SEMPER FI!"
LCpl Wood of Washington, DC

"We can't thank your family enough for the great sacrifice of giving up your son for our freedom. He is a hero, not only in our eyes but especially in God's. May God
bless and comfort you all."
Karl and Sandra Thiel of Fort Collins, CO, USA

"Thank you all for your prayers and wishes and sympathy. It is very much appreciated. And to his fellow Marines who left comments:Matt was a great guy and apparently had a lot of really awesome brothers. If any of you should need anything please let me know.Thank you all,
Matts Proud Marine sister!"
Sarah of Frederick , MD

"prayers with you each know that there is not a day that goes by that I do not think of Matt and of his family each of you are in my heart and prayers eva@twlakes.net"
Eva of Livingston TN

It has been almost a year since we lost you. Your sacrifce is one that will never be forgotten, I am proud to say that I was friends with a true hero. No matter what happens, I will never forget the great memories that years of friendship have given me. See ya later Kid!"
Amanda of Westminster, Md

"i want to say to his family that i am glad he proudly served his country.
my prayers go out to his family"
keith kranz

"I miss you "Mattie". After everything that has gone on, I realized how many peoples lives you touched. I truly believe that you were an angel sent by God. People tell me to just remember the good times, it's funny because I don't think there were any bad times. I love you big bro. I CAN'T WAIT TO SEE YOU AGAIN. <3"
Traci Snyder, LCpl. Snyder's sister

"I am very sorry for your loss and my family's thoughts and prayers are with you. I am sorry your family had to endure protesters intruding on a time of grieving and the lack of respect of your privacy during this difficult time. I hope your faith will help give strength to get through."
Kimberly of charleston, sc

"Grieving is so private and necessary. I'm so sorry for your loss and for the ridiculous invasion of your privacy.
God bless you"
Patricia Kriebel of Franklin, TN

"My sincere sympathy to your family on the loss of your son."
Dave MacIntyre of Sault Ste. Marie Canada

"Dear Snyder Family,
I am so sorry for your loss. I saw your story on CNN. Those protesters were so disrespectful to your family. I am 22 and my brother died when he was 18, the loss of someone so young as your son was is really hard. Your family is in my prayers. Julie"
Julie of Wayne, Illinois

"Dear Snyder Family,

I have been HEARTBROKEN since I heard your story on CNN. And, let me tell you no matter what anyone says or does YOU'RE SON IS OUR HERO...AND THAT WILL NEVER CHANGE...PERIOD. Thank you, Matthew A. Snyder!!! I will never forget your sacrifice!!!"
Shane of Chicago, IL

"To Alert Snyder ...Your Son is a hero He has done more for this country in a single momemt then most will do in their whole lives and I know how Proud you are of him. I cried this morning when I saw your story on CNN I don't know what I would have done if those people had shown up at my Brother's Service. I hope to God you win your lawsuit and are able to save other Brave families from what you have suffered! Please know that you are not alone and that you have the support of every Gold Star Family behind you!! God Bless you and yours."
Jennifer Blessing, sister of Sgt Jay A Blessing

"To me, this isn't about the war, it isn't about homosexuality. A heartbroken, grieving father simply wanted to bury his son. May God forgive the protestors that won't even respect a dead boy."
Beth of Durham, NC

"We would like to add our deepest sympathy in the loss of your son, and say Semper Fidelis...Marine.
My husband was a USMarine Raider in WWII and we would like to offer our help in your law suit against Westboro Baptist Church. We are sure there are many former Marines that would also like to help. Maybe you could open a web page for suggestions.
Semper Fi, Inh104@yahoo.com"
Donald & Irene Hagner of Kenmore, New York

"To Matthews family
I cannot begin to imagine the pain you all must experiencing. May God give you all strength. I was so saddened to hear the story on CNN about the protestors. What a cruel world we live in!! I cannot imagine what kind of person could be that cruel and also use the name of God at the same time!! Shame on them! My condolences to your family."
Sheri of Ohio

"To the family of LCpl Matthew Snyder,
Christ be with you. Please know that Fred Phelps is an agent provocateur, a disciple of the luciferian doctrine. His is charged with mocking Christianity."
Davagne of Phoenix, AZ

"To the family and friends of Matthew Snyder--
I saw your story on CNN. Please allow me to offer my heart-felt sympathy on the death of your son. My brother and sister-in-law are both Marines. I am studying to be a pastor in the Methodist Church. I support and honor all soldiers who risk their lives to guarantee our futures. I also support your cause. Your son did die with honor, and I thank God for him. He is resting with the angels. GOD LOVES YOU, AND YOUR SON. There is no one in heaven or on earth who could convince me otherwise. Blessings and peace to you."
Amanda Hemenetz of Hopatcong, NJ

"Heaven's got another of the few and proud guarding it's streets. America thanks and will never forget Matthew and his contributions to defending the right of freedom for his fellow man. To all those who want an example of a Marine, it was LCpl Matthew A. Snyder."
Allan of Blaine MN USA

"I feel very grieved for the loss of your precious son. I am outraged by these fanatical bigots who trample on the high morals and sacrifice of young men like your son. I urge you to pursue your case against them and I urge all constitutional lawyers to assist you in a case that will bring them down. I wish that the highest echelons of all the branches of government would address these outrageous people and proclaim that these excesses of our democracy must be stopped.

With greatest sympathy on your loss,

Carol Portugal
Harrington Park, NJ"
carol portugal of harrington park, NJ

"Just saw the CNN story on your son, and you have my deepest sympathies, not only for the tragic loss of your son, but for the infantile, uncaring, cult-like actions of those who claim to be Christians and the way they have treated you and are treating our returning veterans and their familes during their time of bereavement. God does not treat his children the way they are treating you, and he, I am sure, is taking note of their actions. Good luck with your suit against the Westboro church."
M. A. of NC

"To the family of Matthew Snyder:

I just want to convey my deepest of sympathies to all of you. You do not know me and I did not know your son. I learned of your tragic loss in a newspaper article from my home state of Kansas. I just want you to know the ENTIRE state of Kansas is behind you and supports you in your endeavours to silence the imbeciles associated with the Westboro Church. They are a pox on this nation and do not speak for ANYONE in our great state other than the 30 or so church members - mostly their family members. I am so sorry for their intrusion into your lives and I am quite sure I speak for everyone in Kansas when I say so. God bless you all."
Penny of Houston, TX

"This message is to the father, Albert Snyder on your up and coming law suit on the grounds of privacy and defamation against the "Westboro Baptist Church". First off many individuals are not aware that there are five rights that come under the First Admendment. Though freedom of speech is the one most people are familiar with "The right to Assemble peacefully",which I believe in this case trumps free speech. Often the question"can you shout fire in a crowded theatre" and the response is in his case would,I believe be no because you would be in violation of those people assembling peacefully and could cause panic and harm. Though my thoughts on the war are most likely different from yours,I respect ones right to mourn a loss of there a family member. Of course my feelings about the Phelps are probably right where yours are. God Speed! I to was a Veteran,Viet Nam,A Navy Corpman(Medic). We,as you probably know,served the Marines! If you care to respond,my e mail address is"cwintersen@aol.com. Thanks for letting me share!"
Carey Stock of lexington,Ky.

"To the family of LCpl Snyder,
I served with Snyder in 29 Palms just before his deployment. I am saddend and sorry for the loss. Snyder was one of my favorite Marine's he always got the job done and had a great sense of humor. One thing I remember him for the most is his quote ,"This is how we do." I just heard of the news today. And researched and found this site. Just remember that we lost Snyder to a good cause, and I distinctly remember him beging to go. He died for what he believed in, and I'm sure he's in a better place now.
Sgt James R. Hazel

P.S. Snyder, "This is how we do!""
Sgt James R. Hazel of Ft Leonardwood MO

Please KNOW so many people share your sadness,
and we are remembering your family in your loss and your deep grief.
Our nations HERO, Matthew will be remembered by name.
Our thoughts and prayers are with you.
Pat & Sandi Breckenridge / Montana God Bless you ALWAYS. "

"Thank you Matthew Snyder, 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 Lance Cpl. Matthew Snyder:
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 Lance Cpl. Matthew Snyder:
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