September 11, 2020
It has hard to believe it has been 19 years. I knew Matt from Georgetown University. During our senior year there, he and I were the two teaching assistants for aProfessor Walter “Jack” Giles. Matt was the TA for Professor Giles’ Constitutional Law class and I was the TA for Professor Giles’ American Government class. He was a hell of a lot smarter than me. He was brilliant but, yet, very humble. We shared an office.
Matt was a gentleman and a scholar, a true Renaissance man.
He went off to law school at Columbia and me to Notre Dame. We traded Christmas cards after that and got together with Professor Giles a few times after that.
I last saw Matt in Florence, Italy, in the Summer of 1987. We both, separately, went to a Europe, after the bar exams. He went with his close friend and I went with mine. Back then, there was no internet and no cell phones.
I knew Matt would be in Europe when I was there but I didn’t know where or when. I literally bumped into Matt on the streets of Florence, Italy.It was a very pleasant shock. We got together for dinner that night and caught up on life.
I have visited his name on the 9/11 Memorial. I pray that he rests in peace. May God bless him and his family.
John Gerard Farnan