Sunday, August 12, 2007

Matthew Murchison remembered

Spc. Matthew M. Murchison always wanted to be a police officer as a child, said his mother, Deborah Shanahan of Kansas City.

Murchison, 21, who was assigned to the 127th Military Police Company, 720th Military Police Battalion, 89th Military Police Brigade, died Saturday in Iraq when a bomb detonated and struck the vehicle in which he was riding.

"His father was a police officer (in Hutchinson, Kan.), and that is all he ever said," Shanahan said.

Murchison moved to Independence in 2005 with his father, Michael Murchison, after he graduated from Olathe East High School. He was born in Hutchinson, Kan., and went to school primarily in the Olathe School District.

He had several jobs but nothing he could really get into and in August 2005 decided to join the Army, according to his father.

"He came up and said, 'Dad, I am joining the Army,' and he asked me not to get mad. We've completely supported him," Murchison said, adding that even through high school Matthew had an interest in joining the armed services.

Outside of the military, Murchison said, his son was into computers and cars.

"He had an older Camaro," Murchison said. "He said when got back from Iraq he was going to buy a new one."

Murchison described his son as loyal.

"He was close to his friends," he said. "I've even received e-mails from Iraq giving their condolences."

Murchison said he is still concerned for the soldiers who were injured with Matthew.

Matthew even made a connection with youth in a Kansas City, Kan., church.

Lea Giesbrecht, an associate pastor at Armourdale Baptist Church, worked with Shanahan.

"She told me her son was going to Iraq, and I told her my church has an adopt-a-soldier program," Giesbrecht said.

Giesbrecht said the kids enjoyed receiving letters from Matthew.

"We would send him cookies and other fun things," she recalled. "Before he left, we made him an Army Build-A-Bear. He gave it to his mom before he left."

Murchison said he was proud of his son.

"He was doing what he wanted to do," he said. "He did more in 21 years than many people do in a lifetime."

Shanahan said a private family viewing will take place Saturday and a wake and memorial will take place Sunday. He will be buried at Fort Leavenworth Cemetery Monday. Arrangements are being made through Newcomers and Sons in Overland Park, Kan.

From the Examiner

Related Link:
Matthew M. Murchison dies 'of wounds suffered when the vehicle he was in struck an improvised explosive device'