Matt in Checked ShirtGrief, Healing, and Learning

A Tribute Site Dedicated to the Memory of
Matthew Wayne Shepard

THE STORY OF MATTHEW WAYNE SHEPARD (1976-1998) deeply affected millions of people around the world -- including me. It continues to do so. It brought many of us together who might not otherwise have met. A notable common experience for us was the grief we endured over the death of this young man -- someone we had never known.

University of Wyoming: Grief Envelops the Campus -- AP Photo

'Matt Looks Upward' -- Photo by Gina Van Hoof -- MATTHEW'S PLACE --

Matt Vigil

I knew, as early as November 1998, that I wanted to build a Web site in Matt's memory. It sometimes required considerable effort -- partly because of the subject matter, but also because there were times when other demands kept me from finishing the project. Yet the work was never for one day very far from my mind.

The links are at the bottom of this page. The memorial page tells, from my own personal viewpoint, how I was struck by Matt's experience -- his final days, his untimely death, the tributes to him from his family and friends. It tells how I dealt with the grief through the Judeo-Christian teachings that I have learned to rely on -- particularly the teachings of Jesus and the Apostle Paul. And it shares a few insights l was compelled to learn from the experience.

As the central, dominant feature in the site, the Memorial page, in particular, is best read deliberately and thoughtfully, when you have some time to sit quietly and let it "take."

Jim Hastings

Original site texts copyright © 2002-2013 by Jim Hastings. All rights reserved. Any similarities to the texts of other writers are entirely coincidental.

The external links on some pages do not imply endorsement by owners of the external sites of any material presented here. The views and opinions expressed on other sites are, to the best of my knowledge, those of their authors and may or may not coincide with mine.

J. H.


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