Operation Iraqi Freedom, Fallen Heroes, Iraq War 03/19/03

Matthew W Creed

Covina, California

October 22, 2006

Age Military Rank Unit/Location
23 Army Spc

1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division

Fort Hood, Texas

 Killed in Baghdad, Iraq, when their patrol came in contact with enemy forces. 

CPL Matthew W. Creed was born on 29 January 1983 in Covina, California.

CPL Creed entered the United States Army on 2 October 2003. He graduated Basic Combat Training and Advanced Individual Training at Fort Benning, Georgia. Upon graduation he was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 9th Infantry at Camp Hovey, Korea. He was the assigned to the 2nd Infantry Division at Camp Red Cloud, Korea. In March 2005 he was assigned to Alpha Company, 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division at Fort Hood, Texas. He deployed to Iraq in December 2005 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. In June 2006 he was reassigned to Headquarters, Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry to serve as Gunner for the Command Sergeant Major.

CPL Creed’s awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, the Purple Heart, the Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Iraq Campaign Medal, the Korean Defense Service Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon, and the Combat Infantryman Badge. 

CPL Creed is survived by his wife, Ashley Creed of Monrovia, California and his parents Richard and Kimberly Creed of Glendora, California.

Matt was an exceptional soldier - bright, energetic, and fun to be around. He was the gunner on my vehicle and an outstanding one at that. He was a dedicated professional with a quick sense of humor who always had a way of turning the ordinary into something extraordinary. He will be sorely missed by our crews, his company, and the entire battalion.

Richard A. Beal 
CSM, USA 
From San Gabriel Tribune 11/04/06:

Honoring a hero
Cpl. Creed laid to rest in Covina
By Phil Drake Staff Writer

COVINA - The Rev. Judith Heffron needed a little help from her dictionary Saturday when talking about Matthew Creed. She said Webster's defines heroes as being mythical, and having super powers.

"That certainly fits our Matthew," she told nearly 350 people gathered at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church for funeral services for the 23-year-old Army corporal killed Oct. 22 by a sniper's bullet in Baghdad, Iraq.

"Today we come to celebrate a hero's homecoming," she said. "Matthew had a hero's heart."

As of Friday, at least 2,828 members of the U.S. military have died since the beginning of the Iraq War in March 2003, according to an Associated Press count. Creed was the 19th person from the San Gabriel Valley to die in the war.

In a service filled with military tradition,
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Creed was remembered as a fun-loving and somewhat mischievous kid.

"Matt would love all this attention," his father, Rick, said, adding his son's reaction would be: "Yeah, this is all about me."

Rick Creed said his son truly enjoyed life and smiled as he talked about Matthew shooting staples at co-workers.

Heffron shared a memory of Creed as a "knobby-kneed kid playing tricks on his friends" during church youth events.

But she added, he always delivered.

"He would do the job that needed to done with a glad and willing heart."

Creed graduated from Charter Oak High School in 2001. He had hopes of becoming a police officer, but was told to get some experience in the military. He enlisted in 2003.

He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Hood, Texas.

He turned down an offer to be stationed at Washington, D.C., and asked to go to Iraq, Army officials said. Earlier, the military said Creed was an Army specialist. But Saturday, officials said he had achieved the rank of corporal. The paperwork for his promotion had been in process before he was killed in Iraq.

"He was working hard to be a corporal," Army Sgt. 1st Class Franklin Spencer said. "He wanted to be an NCO \."

Survivors include his wife, Ashley; mother, Kimberly, father, Rick; and brother, James. The Creeds were longtime Covina residents but recently moved to Rancho Cucamonga.

The lengthy funeral procession from the church to Forest Lawn Memorial-Park, Covina Hills included 90 motorcycles from the Patriot Guard Riders, a group of motorcyclists who attend funeral services of "fallen American heroes," and several vehicles form the Covina Police Department.

Graveside services included a 21-gun salute and presentation of the flag and medals to the family.

Last week, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger ordered flags at the state capitol to be flown at half-staff in Creed's honor.

Creed's body arrived at the airport Monday.

Heffron said she was among the procession of vehicles that brought the body to Forest Lawn.

She said as they drove up the cemetery grounds, the Covina Police Department had cars parked along the entryway. The vehicle lights were on and by each car an officer stood at full military salute.

"It was an appropriate homecoming," she said.

phil.drake@sgvn.com

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