Matthew Patrick Manoukian
February 22, 1983 - August 10, 2012
Captain Matthew Patrick Manoukian was born on February 22, 1983 to Socrates Peter Manoukian and Patricia Bamattre-Manoukian. He grew up in Los Altos and Los Altos Hills with younger brothers Michael and Martin. He graduated from St. Nicholas Grammar School in Los Altos Hills (Class of 1997), St. Francis High School in Mountain View (Class of 2001), and the University of Arizona (Class of 2005) with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science and a minor in Sociology.
Matthew decided to join the United States Marine Corps when he was seven years old. He attempted to enlist in the Marine Corps immediately after the events of September 11, 2001, shortly after he began college. However, spinal cord surgery and a surgery for a high school football injury to his knee delayed Matthew’s plans to enlist.
In January, 2006, following graduation from the University of Arizona, Matthew entered the United States Marine Corps Officer Candidate School in Quantico, Virginia. On 31 March 2006, he graduated and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant. Lt. Manoukian graduated from The Basic School in October of 2006 and from The Infantry Officers Course in December of 2006. Matthew began training at Camp Pendleton in Southern California to prepare for deployment to Iraq as a Platoon Commander assigned to a mobile assault platoon made up of 35 Marines and two Navy corpsmen. Matthew put together a rigorous training program for his platoon and he always demonstrated great commitment to his Marines.
In 2007, he deployed for his first tour of duty to the town of Anah, Al-Anbar Province in Western Iraq. In 2008, serving as a First Lieutenant, Matthew was deployed to Al-Anbar Province for a second time. Assigned to a Military Transition Team, Matthew and his team worked with local Iraqi authorities to secure the western border with Syria, a country in which his paternal grandfather had lived for 15 years. Upon his return home in April 2008, Matthew was screened to undergo training in the Marine Special Operations Command (MARSOC) at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina. Out of the 100 Marines who entered the program, only 40 graduated in February of 2009, and Matthew finished among the top Marines.
After completing this training, he joined MARSOC’s 1st Marine Special Operations Battalion assigned to Camp Pendleton. In 2010, serving as a Captain, Matthew deployed to Helmand Province, Afghanistan charged with the mission of working to unify local tribal leadership with District level governance. After returning from his third deployment to Afghanistan, Matthew continued with his MARSOC training. He wanted to return to Afghanistan again with his team to continue the work he had been doing in the villages but was told that he was going to be assigned as the Battalion Executive Officer. Matthew was very grateful when the MARSOC Command agreed with Matthew’s request and reassigned him to a team to redeploy to Afghanistan in May 2012.
Captain Matthew Patrick Manoukian was killed in combat in Afghanistan on 10 August 2012. Matthew was an amazing and dedicated Marine, an outstanding leader, and a dearly beloved son and brother. Matthew touched the lives of so many in Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, California, the United States, Iraq, and Afghanistan. Matthew was dedicated to service of his country and his Marines. Matthew brought every Marine back from three tours. He loved his Marines and he was always beside them. Matthew received many Medals and Commendations including two Purple Hearts and two Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medals. Matthew was humble and he never talked about his accomplishments or awards.
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Approx. Place of Death
Captain Mathew Patrick Manoukian Scholarship
The Captain Matthew Patrick Manoukian Scholarship will be given out to a graduating senior from Matt's alma mater at St. Francis High School in Mountain View California. If you wish to donate to the scholarship please visit the scholarship's website for mailing instructions.