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MADISON—Our beloved son, Matthew Benjamin James, died unexpectedly of an undiagnosed medical condition, on Sept. 5, 2018, at his home in Madison, Wis. He and his family had celebrated his 26th birthday just three days prior. He was a 2011 graduate of West High School and attended Barry University in Miami, Fla. and Waldorf College in Forest City, Iowa before finding his passion and earning his associate degree in Photography in 2017 from Spokane Falls Community College in Spokane, Wash. He especially loved fine art portraiture and band photography, and was proud and excited to have his first work accepted into a juried art show just days before his death. He had also recently earned his CDL in hopes of getting a job that would allow him to save up to start his studio.

Matt loved music and enjoyed combining his passions by photographing live performances. He taught himself to play the guitar by ear, and sang in choir and acapella groups in high school and college. Matt loved sports, playing baseball, volleyball, and soccer, and taking much too seriously the ups and downs of the Packers and Philadelphia Phillies. He loved movies, trying new foods, and especially travel. He had visited Canada, Alaska, Bolivia, Peru, Honduras, and the Galapagos, and dreamed of seeing New Zealand and Vietnam. Matt was an Eagle Scout with Troop 122 in Madison, he was his Dad’s fishing partner, and a loving owner of his dog, Kodak.

Matt will be deeply missed by his family, Philip, Catherine, Brian and Amy James of Madison; as well as grandparents, Gordon and Lois James of Port Hadlock, Wash.; and many loving aunts, uncles, and cousins from across the Americas. He was preceded in death by his uncle, Ian Thompson; grandmother, Marjorie Thompson; and the recent deaths of grandfather, Thoburn Thompson, and Miriam Temple, and great-aunt, Rute Helmen.

A celebration of Matt’s life will be held on Sept. 29, 2018, at COVENANT PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH, 326 S. Segoe Road, Madison. Visitation will be at 1 p.m., and the service at 3 p.m., with a reception to follow.

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Memorial gifts can be directed to the family and will be sent on to the Photography Dept. at Spokane Falls Community College and to Walbridge School in Madison. In lieu of flowers, please bring non-perishable donations for the food bank.

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