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Matthew Gibbons Marines

Photo of Matthew Gibbons.

"What's important is the exposure to the difficulties and realizing that whatever it is, however difficult it is, if you don't let it beat you, you're not going to be beaten."

Matt Gibbons grew up in an upper-middle-class Connecticut town with his mother, a psychologist, and father, a lawyer and former Marine. At the age of 18, Matt decided to deviate from the conventional college-bound path of his peers and follow in his father's military footsteps. Upon completing his Marine training, Matt was deployed to Afghanistan and quickly learned that there is "only so much that you can really understand before you're actually there." By the age of 21, Matt was given the position of squad leader, putting him in charge of several troops, some of whom were younger than he. By the end of his service, Matt earned himself a Purple Heart and transitioned from boy to man. His leadership skills and efficiency not only gave him confidence, but also a great reputation and a strong sense of importance. Now, Matt must deal with the transition to civilian life and the sudden feeling that his life is lacking importance.