Matthew Eric Raimondi, 56 of Seeley Lake, Montana was fatally injured on Tuesday, 9/12/2023 at Pyramid Mountain Lumber while working as a millwright. His death was pronounced in the early morning hours of 9/13/2023.
Matthew was born in Dayton, Ohio at Miami Valley Hospital on February 23, 1967, to Ennio Joseph Raimondi and Joan Therese Erickson and joined his big brother David. He was a chubby baby with a double chin and was cheerful and fun loving from the start.
Little did David know how mischievous and fun Matthew would be. One year David built an RC airplane, which Matthew loved to fly near the local church parking lot. He was great at flying, except when he wasn’t, and David was forever fixing the plane. Like most brothers, they enjoyed ribbing each other, especially at the breakfast or dinner table and every greeting began with “Dirtbag” (Matthew) and “Hairball” (David) locked in a squeezing hand clasp until one would finally give in.
With an engineer father and a mom with a “can do” attitude, Matthew developed a love for wrenching and horsepower and apparently off-roading as evidenced by the scratches on top of his parents’ borrowed car, though he never admitted to anything of the sort. He had a knack of making any car or machine last longer than they were intended to run, a gift which he generously used for anyone in need.
Matthew graduated from Centerville High School in 1985. After pondering his options for the future, he decided to enlist in the United States Navy on July 22, 1986. Mathew proudly served 20 years which included two tours on the USS Ranger as an Aviation Ordnanceman stationed out of Point Mugu, California and rounding out his career on Whidbey Island. He received achievement medals for Pistol Marksmanship, Rifle Marksmanship with a Sharpshooter Device, and Good Conduct. He also received many Commendations and Achievement Letters from every Command he was attached to.
While stationed at Point Mugu NAWS, Mathew met and married Donnell Brown. Theirs was a whirlwind love that brought him two beautiful daughters: Amanda (age 9) and Megan (age 7). Their son Eric Joseph Raimondi joined their family in 1996 and was the apple of his daddy’s eye. Matthew couldn’t have been a more proud and loving “Pop’s”, and provided lots of entertainment for the kids mudyaking, skydiving, wrenching and instilling in them a love of life and adventure. The couple divorced in 2014.
After retirement from the USN, Matthew enjoyed occupations in many different industries as well as owning his own auto repair garage. He worked on a crab boat, at an automotive repair shop, a large garden company and for 10 years before moving to Montana, he worked as a structural iron worker at Washington Iron Works. He was a phenomenal welder and repaired a couple of “oh shits” for family the last few years that left everyone in awe.
In 2016, Matthew reconnected with Pamela Pohlman, an old friend from his time in Point Mugu. They had shared a soul connection from the moment they met, and it didn’t take long from their reconnection for them to know what the future held. They married in 2017 and Matthew moved to share a life with Pamela in the mountains of Montana, learning how to pack a horse, sew a quilt, and build……with wood, which according to Matthew was an “inferior building material”.
He loved their adventures in the mountains on horseback and together, with their shared love for the animals, they created and established their own special place on earth, Wooly Farms, aka M&M Mfg. – Montanya division; excited to register a brand he had come up with because, According to Matthew, there were just some people in desperate need of a good Mule Kick.
Matthew met so many lifelong friends and one very special Brother in the military and suffered several devastating losses. He had an amazing sense of humor, the ability to turn a somber room into raucous laughter in the blink of an eye and a laugh that was so infectious that it’s absence will be a sore spot for all the years to come. His eyes always had a mischievous little twinkle whenever he was pulling your leg and partaking in a little braggin’ an’ lyin’. His death leaves a hole in the lives of everyone he ever touched.
Matthew is survived by his wife Pamela, Seeley Lake; children, Amanda (Jason) King and family, Oak Harbor, WA; Megan Erwin and family, Oak Harbor, WA; Eric Raimondi, Oak Harbor, WA; Skylar Hoelstad, Missoula, MT; brother, David (Laura) and family, San Jose, CA; parents EJ and Joan Raimondi, Reno, NV; aunt Lea Woodrum, Fort Wayne, IN; uncle, Jon Erickson, IL; uncle Robert Normant, CA; several cousins and his extensive Montana Rich and Pohlman families that loved him deeply.
Matthew is preceded in death by, uncle Larry Woodrum, Fort Wayne, IN; aunt Jackie Shevokas, Channelview, TX; Aunt Jeannie Normant, San Jose, CA.