Matthew Lance Mendez was born August 9, 1983 at the Naval Regional Medical Center, Camp Pendleton, California to his loving parents, John Mendez & Ginger Swartz.
Matthew is unconditionally loved & blessed by his bonus parents, Julie Mendez & Gene Swartz.
Matthew’s siblings Justin Mendez, Mark Mendez & his wife Brenda & Kristina Super& her husband Jeff will hold forever Matthew in their hearts.
Matthew’s Grammie Barbara Lasseter will always have a special place in her heart for her special Matthew.
Matthew is the proud Uncle of Brittany, Andrew, Dante, Tyler, Lena, Arian, Hayden & Jaxon who loved their Uncle Matt Matt without looking at his wheelchair. He was just Uncle Matt.
Matthew’s aunts & uncles whose love & concern for their nephew was always a presence in his life Uncle Bill Lasseter Jr, Uncle Santos Mendez Jr & Aunt Trine, Uncle Gabino Mendez Sr & Aunt Angie, Uncle Frank Mendez & Aunt Shirley ,Uncle David Mendez, Aunt Irene Plowman & Uncle Tom, Uncle Mido Mendez.
Matthew’s 1st cousins who loved him & made him laugh.
Jesse, Traci, Jesse, Dominique, Nakita, Mitch, Tina, Cary, Gordy, Stephanie, Ramon, Marci, Frankie, Diana, DJ, Crystelle, Kaylah, Brett, Zoe & Kali. And many more 2nd& 3rd cousins.
Matthew was greeted in heaven by his Papa Bill Lasseter Sr, Grandma Mary Mendez & Grandpa Santos Mendez Sr, Uncle Jesse Mendez, cousins Victoria Rose Mendez & Cindy Mendez McDow. Plus, the score of other family members who have gone on to their heavenly rest.
Matthew spent the majority of his life in Hollister, California & attended local schools. Matthew also attended Kailua Intermediate School, Kailua, Hawaii. He was a graduate of San Benito High School Class of 2005 where he was an honorary member of the Baler Band.
Matthew participated in the Special Olympics in Hollister & Gilroy & won over 25 medals for track & field. He was often the 1st place finisher in the 25 & 50 yard dashes due to the speed of his brothers & others who pushed him in his wheelchair. He loved every minute of it. Matthew also participated in bowling tournaments sponsored by the Special Olympics.
Matthew was a charter member of the Kailua National Challenger Division in Kailua, Hawaii as well as the Hollister Little League Challenger Division in Hollister, California. Matthew enjoyed being out in the sunshine & participating to this fullest & best of his abilities. He loved hearing the clapping of his teammates & those in the stands cheering on all players. Matthew made many friends playing baseball. And he was our MVP & home run hitter.
Matthew loved music, any & all kinds of music. From Hispanic music, to hip hop, to Bob Marley, to marching band music, if it had a beat Matthew liked it. He enjoyed playing his bells, shakers & tambourine. Matthew could keep a good beat. He often would clap his hands to imitate others especially while listening to the Giants games.
Matthew’s family would like to thank all the people who had a special part in Matthew’s life.
Caregivers, Doctors, nurses, teachers, para educators, bus drivers, San Andreas Regional Center, staff at SVS Hollister. Most recently Mercy Home Health Care in Merced, California & Golden Valley Home Health Care in Oroville, California. Our heartfelt thanks for treating Matthew with dignity & respect.
Matthew was our hero. His body did not allow him to walk, his eyes did not allow him to see, his voice did not allow him to talk, but he gave us all so much more than we gave him. Matthew taught us all the meaning of unconditional love, determination & courageousness. He was the teacher & we were the students. What a joy to hear him laugh, to see him smile & often when he was outside he would look up to the heavens as though he knew the Lord was waiting for him to come home. He is at peace with our Lord now. Matthew’s family will miss him everyday until we see him again. We are thankful that he is no longer in pain & he is free of the disabilities that confined him. Matthew is free to do everything he couldn’t do on earth.
Matthew – from the Hebrew Matityahu, meaning “Gift from God”
Matthew 5:8 “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God”.
A Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, October 6th at 12:00 noon at Grunnagle-Ament-Nelson Funeral Home. A reception will follow at the Hollister Elks Lodge.
Donation are preferred to the Community Foundatin of San Benito County, Babe Ruth Restoration Fund, 829 San Benito Street, Hollister, CA 95023 or c/o the mortuary.
Courtesy of Grunnagle-Ament-Nelson Funeral Home