National Fallen Firefighters Foundation

Roll of Honor

Inmate Firefighter
Age: 26
Year of Death: 2017

Matthew James Beck

Matthew James Beck was born on March 13, 1991, to Karen Twiford and James Beck in Venice, California. Matthew was a very sensitive and caring boy. He had an older brother, Ronnie, whom he looked up to as a child. Matthew became a big brother at the age of four to his sister, McKenna, of whom he was always very protective.

Matthew’s childhood was surrounded by family and friends, spending most of it playing with his cousins and his siblings. Matthew was an avid reader and loved all types of books. He was very articulate and smart, with a great sense of humor. Matthew was well liked by his peers and enjoyed making people laugh.

As Matthew went from childhood to young adulthood, he began to experience some trials and tribulations. During those tough times, he was surrounded by angels, his family and friends who loved him unconditionally. On October 27, 2012, Wesley James Beck was born to Matthew Beck and Analisa Curzi.

During Matthew’s incarceration, he continued developing his relationship with his son through family visits, phone calls, and letters. It was because of this relationship that Matthew chose to make a positive change in his life by volunteering to become an inmate firefighter. After completing his training, he was sent to Alder Conservation Camp in Del Norte County, California, where he became a line crew leader. Matthew immediately developed a sense of pride in the work he was doing and had hoped to continue volunteering as a firefighter upon his release. Matthew would call home and tell his son, who was four, that he was working to help save people.

On May 24, 2017, at the age of 26, Matthew made the ultimate sacrifice. While clearing brush with his crew, Matthew received a fatal blow from a tree that uprooted. He is and always will be loved and will remain in our hearts. Matthew will be forever missed by his friends and family, especially by his son, Wesley.

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  1. I miss you every single day!! love mom

    – Karen Williams
  2. Matt, Mattman,Matthew, Grandson,
    A wonderful, caring, & loving child to young man. When you were 2 yo I married your Grandma, you wondered who I was ( I could tell by the way you looked at me) and in a short time you trusted me. I was humbled & honored bc in a very short time I loved you & your sister.

    When Kenna was born we met you, & your Mom, of course, and Grandma said watch Matt while I’m with Karen. Uh-oh what do I do now we’re at a hospital? I got it, let’s go to the Gift Shop and I told you to buy whatever you wanted it’s a Special Day!! You picked out a stuffed animal and I asked you what will you name it. You looked up at me, smiled & said Beethoven. Every time I see a stuffed animal I think of you and Beethoven. It makes me happy & I relieve that time & time again .

    There were MANY more times we spent with you, Kenna,Grandma, & Me. I’ll never ever forget you Matthew NEVER. I’m not much for writing this stuff but never forget that I loved you so very much. Grandpa

    – Grandpa