Matthew Sweeney

Matthew J. Sweeney, 41, of Waukon died Friday, July 22, 2022 in Waukon from injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident. Funeral services were held Friday, July 29 at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Waukon with Fr. John Moser officiating. Burial will be at Mt. Olivet Cemetery, Waukon.

Martin-Grau Funeral Home in Waukon handled arrangements. In lieu of flowers and gifts, memorials may be directed to the Ronald McDonald House or to a charity of choice.

Matthew Joseph Sweeney was born October 21, 1980 in Waukon, the son of Joseph Raymond and Kristine Ann (Stock) Sweeney. Little did Waukon know what a legendary man this boy would grow to become. He started his school career making friends at St. Patrick School and then went on to Waukon Junior High and High School, graduating with life-long friends in the Class of 1999. Matt continued his studies in business and graduated from Winona Technical College.

He returned to Waukon to work at Sweeney’s Village Farm and Home. From a young age, Matt worked at the Village alongside his dad, Grandpa Ray, and uncles. Matt appreciated the business these men had built and looked forward to continuing to build on its greatness when he and his brother, Steven, took ownership with their dad in January 2020. Many will miss those signature greetings they received from Matt when walking through the doors. He wasn’t just there to help you find the part or tool you needed; he was there to provide a listening ear, give encouragement and praise when needed, or maybe one of those hugs he was famous for.

Matt wasn’t afraid to pursue other passions and for many years he could be found racing stock cars and running Sweeney’s Racing Supplies, providing racing supplies and fuel at the track. Many may also be familiar with his Hidden Valley Ranch and his prized donkey, Happy, but Matt also had a herd of cattle and took pride in his farming operation and the calves that he raised.

He was a founding member of the musically challenged yet wildly popular sensation ‘The Toe Smashers’. This group of fine young Irishmen brought many smiles and laughter to thousands of people they entertained. Despite their popularity, the group eventually retired and Matt continued to support the true community legends ‘The Toe Tappers’ and was one of their biggest supporters at the St. Patrick’s Day celebration. His smiling Irish eyes and dance moves were great accompaniments to the tunes of “Tiny Bubbles” and other crowd favorites.

Matt was very passionate about helping anybody in any way he could, and he always put everyone else before himself. His generous spirit showed in all that he did from collecting pop tabs for the Ronald McDonald House, donating blood and plasma whenever he could, volunteering with the Knights of Columbus, and even auctioning off his beard to raise funds.

You can’t think about Matt without picturing him on a motorcycle. He loved to ride his Harley, whether it was a solo ride to take in the beauty of nature (and likely a few stops to capture those sunrise and sunset photos he was so fond of) or a cruise with those friends who were like family to him. Many, many memories were made on those rides and Matt surely left his mark on many of the places he visited.  Literally… he loved a good burnout, and often left his mark!

Matt touched so many lives in his short 41 years and treasured the relationships he had with those that knew him. He had the utmost respect for his dad and loved his mom beyond measure. You probably wouldn’t have guessed it, but he wrote a beautiful poem in tribute to her after she passed away. His pride and joys were, without a doubt, his six special nephews and his beautiful niece, as well as his handsome fur babies, Bob and Atticus.

Matt was truly one-of-a-kind. His Facebook profile headline read “I am me!” and that was his motto. He was unapologetically himself and had a lot of personality and character that was loved by all who knew him. He was an all-around great guy who would give the shirt off his back for anyone and had a heart of gold. His signature carefree nature was often the life of the party and, oh, the stories and memories that will live on about Matt “Wildcat” Sweeney.

The world will be a better place if we all live like Matt - live every day to the fullest, stop to take pictures of the sunsets and breathe in the fresh air, take time to enjoy the ride, reach out to people, and make them feel loved and appreciated. Fill the world with love, kindness, helping hands, smiles and laughter.

He is survived by his dad, Joe (Judy) Sweeney of Waukon; his sister, Sarah (Darin) Monroe of Decorah; his brother, Steven (Jessie) Sweeney of Waukon; his niece and nephews, Creed, Gabe, Burke and Dempsey Monroe, and Raymond, Elliott and Emmett Sweeney; his step-sister, Amy (Daniel) Saucer and their children, Alan, Eddie and Joey Saucer, of Clarksville, TN; his step-brother, Paul (Kai) Brito Perez, of Las Vegas, NV; and his two beloved pups, Bob and Atticus.

Matt was preceded in death by his mom, Kris; his grandparents, Ray and Monica Sweeney, Maureen and Neil Becker, and Robert L. Stock; and his cousins, who he is certainly living it up with in Heaven: Jason Johanningmeier, Patrick Fisk and Nicholas Manning.

Honorary casketbearers were Matt’s niece and nephews and the Village Farm and Home staff. Casketbearers were Steven Sweeney, Darin Monroe, Justin Sweeney, Mike Johanningmeier, Paul Fisk, Jeffrey Sweeney, Noah Manning, Jason Sweeney, Greg Lubahn and Jonathan Herman.

Online condolences may be left at