In memory of
Lance Cpl. Matthew W. Clark
Matthew W. Clark's father, Kenneth Clark, a Marine veteran, died during Matthew's senior year of high school with his son always close by.
"Few fathers and sons are as close as Ken and Matthew were," said The Rev. Monsignor Vernon Gardin. "Ken doted on Matthew and, when he was dying, Matthew was his angel."
Clark, 22, of St. Louis, was killed by a roadside bomb Dec. 14 in Anbar province. He was a 2002 high school graduate and was assigned to Kaneohe Bay.
Clark also did a tour of duty in Afghanistan. A month before his death, the Marine e-mailed his priest a "personal manifesto of his life."
"I am American," Clark wrote. These are my people. I will always be more like them than the Britons or French men. I will forever desire to protect them."
His mother, Lee Hundelt, said her son had wanted to be a Marine since he was a boy. She recounted a time when Clark wanted to hang an American flag over his bed but was too young to do it himself. She hung it for him instead.
"He was always thinking about other people more than himself," said Kurt Knoedelseder, a teacher.
He also is survived by his mother, Lee Hundelt.
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