Matthew Gwaltney was a second-year master’s student in the Charles E. Via Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. In 2005, he received his bachelor’s degree, magna cum laude, from Virginia Tech in civil engineering, with a concentration in environmental and water resources engineering. As a graduate student, he taught civil engineering labs and was conducting research on storm water management. Matthew’s professional goal was to improve awareness and education about environmental issues, encouraging people to be proactive in protecting the environment and improving our quality of life.
Matthew was born Dec. 11, 1982, to Karen P. and G. Gregory Gwaltney Jr. He was a 2001 graduate of Thomas Dale High School in Chester, Va. Among the awards and recognition Matthew received were acceptance in the National Honor Society and Spanish Honor Society at Thomas Dale and into Chi Epsilon, the civil engineering undergraduate honor society; Tau Beta Pi, engineering honor society; National Society of Collegiate Scholars; Phi Eta Sigma; Golden Key International Honor Society; and Phi Kappa Phi at Virginia Tech.
Sports were Matthew’s passion and he was a master of sports statistics and trivia. He was a devoted Hokies fan and enjoyed all ACC sporting events. The Atlanta Braves, Chicago White Sox, and Chicago Bulls led his list of favorite professional teams. Matthew played basketball and baseball at Thomas Dale and continued to play pickup basketball at Tech. At Thomas Dale, Matthew was an avid, dedicated team member, and his cheerful disposition and determination earned him many lasting friends, including Ashby Tarkington, Phil Tysinger, Nick Anders, Michael Kendrick, Matt Green, Paul Lamborn, Russell Krupp, Travis Koogler, Kevin McCain, and Sarah Radford.
Matthew was also devoted to his family. He was preceded in death by his paternal grandmother, Frances G. Gwaltney, and two aunts, Kathy G. Huffman and Kimberly D. Poindexter. He is survived by his parents; his step-mother, Linda Gwaltney; his grandparents, Granville G. Gwaltney Sr. and Lee and Donez Poindexter; aunts Cynthia G. Rowe and Kelly P. Amidon; uncles Gerard and Michael; cousins Jonathan, Katelyn, and Rhiannon; and his mother’s friend, James M. Clay.
The family recommends contributions be made to the Matthew Gregory Gwaltney Memorial Fund. For more information on how to donate to the fund established by the Gwaltney family, visit this page on the Office of Recovery and Support site.
Hometown: Chesterfield, Virginia
Masters student, Environmental Engineering
Student since fall 2001
Master of Science, Environmental Engineering
© 2009 Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University