Matthew James McCullough

  • Born: October 2, 1971
  • Died: November 23, 2019
  • Location: Ankeny, Iowa

Memorial Services of Iowa

4208 North Ankeny Blvd.
Ankeny, IA 50023

dave@ankenymemorial.com
Tel. (515) 964-0592

Tribute & Message From The Family


Dr. Matt McCullough, 48, of Ankeny, Iowa passed away on Saturday, November 23, 2019 after living courageously with sarcoma cancer for over five years.
Funeral services will be held on Sunday, December 1, 2019 at the Christian Life Center-Ankeny First United Methodist Church (710 NE 36th Street, Ankeny, Iowa 50021). The family will begin receiving visitors at 1:00 pm followed by a 3:00 pm service. From 1:00-3:00 pm, there will be a home video shown while guests can share in fellowship.

Matthew James McCullough was born on October 2, 1971 in Humboldt, Iowa to Jim and Pat McCullough joining his big brother Gregg. After spending his early years in Boone, Iowa, the family moved to Ankeny when Matt was 9 years old where he attended Southeast Elementary, Neveln Middle School and graduated with honors from Ankeny High School in 1990. Matt was a lover of all sports playing baseball, football, and basketball. His picture is still displayed to this day at Ankeny High School for All-State Honors in football alongside his brother Gregg's picture for All-State basketball and now his own daughter, Sara as her picture is now displayed alongside her dad and uncle for All-State basketball. Matt graduated from the University of Iowa in 1994 with his Bachelor's Degree and The University of Iowa, College of Dentistry in 1998 with his Doctor of Dental Surgery Degree (DDS). Matt was in the Iowa Army National Guard from 1996-2004 where he served as a dentist at Camp Anaconda in Balad, Iraq just north of Baghdad in 2003, and served for a three-year term on the Iowa Dental Board. In the summer of 2019, Matt was inducted into the Ankeny Alumni Hall of Honor.

Matt met his wife, Brea (Whaley) in college and married on June 20, 1998 in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa at Oakland Mills Community Church. They moved to Ankeny, Iowa where they grew their family and started a dental practice, Ankeny Dental Professionals, P.C. Matt loved everything about his profession and cared tirelessly for his patients and employees. There was no mountain that he could not climb and nothing that could stop him from always choosing to not only live, but lead with integrity while doing the right thing-always. Matt showed us how to always choose forgiveness, and live with grace and dignity above all. He expected the same of those he surrounded himself with and you tended to raise your standards because of his lead. If you were privileged to know him or be in his loving presence, your life was better. Anyone that knew Matt, knew that he would never speak ill will of anyone under any circumstances and that character was seen to the very end even with regard to his cancer. His niceness was not to be mistaken for weakness. He accepted this was the hand that he was dealt and he played it beautifully the entire time, beautiful like his soul. He truly beat cancer by how he lived with it as well as it never stopped him from being the dedicated family man and leader within the community that we could count on to be our rock. His kindness was seen in his eyes to the very end. He loved everyone and we loved him.
Matt is survived by his wife Brea and their three children Sara (18), Brady (15) and Troy (11); his parents Jim and Pat McCullough of Ankeny; his brother Dr. Gregg McCullough (Darci, Madi, Cody, Cade) of Ankeny; his in-laws Rick and Carla Chimienti of Ankeny (Kari and Andrea); and father in law Donnie Whaley (Sally and Mollie) of Coralville, Iowa.

Matt was preceded in death by his infant sister, Jennifer; maternal grandparents Milford and Irene Juhl of Boone, Iowa; paternal grandparents Bob and Grace McCullough of Ames, Iowa.

In lieu of flowers, the family ask that you please consider donating blood because that was life sustaining for Matt during his last months and for so many others. We will be working on organizing a future blood drive in his honor. https://www.lifeservebloodcenter.org/


Services


Condolence & Memory Journal

So sorry to hear of his passing. He was my dentist. I remember hearing him run up and down the basement stairs at the Dentist office on Walnut St. in Ankeny. He was a wonderful dentist and a kind soul.

Posted by Sherri simmer - Ankeny, IA - Acquaintance   June 10, 2020

Most people don't know me I'm actually a custodian for a company that cleans his office my name is Michael I met him a couple of times and every time I met him he seemed like a very special person I wish his family the best in the future

Posted by Michael maylone - DES MOINES, IA   December 21, 2019

So sad to hear the news. Matt was my classmate in dental school, I was so lucky to know and work with him. He was a true friend and always willing to help others. May God be with him. My prayers and condolences go to his family, may God take your pain away and give you peace.

Posted by Qun Collins - Fort Mohave   December 04, 2019

Candle

Matt will be greatly missed by all whose lives he touched. I knew Matt as an Officer in the Iowa Army National Guard. He was an excellent Officer and an outstanding healthcare provider. Matt was always seen by fellow Soldiers as a caring leader who always set the example as a professional. This reputation was reflective of how he was viewed in his community. A very valued business leader, dentist, father, athlete, and mentor for many. The Iowa National Guard has lost one of it's most valued Alumni, who frequently provide healthcare services regardless of financial feasibility, just so that Soldiers would be taken care of and increase our readiness to serve our state and nation. I am confident that while we lost a great Officer, we gained a strong advocate who will continue to provide over-watch to his family, friends, and fellow service members! God Bless, Matt.

Posted by Timothy Glynn - Ankeny, IA - Served in the Military together   December 03, 2019

So sorry to hear of Matt's death

Posted by James Pollard - Elkhart, IA - Friend   December 01, 2019

So heartbroken to hear this as he was an amazing man! Sending our thoughts and prayers to your whole family. God Bless You All!

Posted by Greg, Jean, Ashley & Madie Hemphill - Polk City, IA   November 30, 2019

Our sincere sympathy to Pat and Jim and the entire family. We are so sorry for your loss.

Posted by Max and Elaine Raines - Slater, IA - Friend   November 29, 2019

Jim and Pat and family our deepest sympathies to you. May God's love surround you at this very difficult time.

Posted by Janet and Randy Freel - Des Moines, IA   November 29, 2019

what can you say about Dr. Matt McCullough He was fearless he treated each patient with respect and dignity he put a lot of crowns in my mouth but you were awesome to me but my family Really enjoyed you as a dentist I'm still going to go to the dentist office I don't plan on leaving until I lose all my teeth. Thank you so much for the great insight that you taught me personally you're gonna be very well missed I asked myself who's going to be my next dentist I think I found it it will be the singing dentist she's pretty awesome to the McCullough family my prayers are with you if you guys need anything please let us know and will try to help you thank you so much for Everything God bless you

Posted by Doug Stier - Ankeny, IA - Friend   November 27, 2019

So many prayers going out to the McCullough family in these hard times, I'm so sorry for your loss❤

Posted by Gabby Schnepf - Ankeny, IA - Friend   November 27, 2019

Matt and I sat next to each other in the preclinical lab in dental school, and I was lucky to have known such a kind, sweet person. I didn't have a lot of contact with him after we graduated, but I really enjoyed being his classmate. I wish all the best to his family. I have two teenagers, and I am sure that this must be terribly hard for the family. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

Posted by Carrie McKnight - North Liberty, IA - Classmate   November 27, 2019

Matt was such a beautiful human being. He was always so kind to everyone and will be missed by many. My prayers continue for all of you. Rest assured that Matt is still your protector and is watching down on all of you. He will live forever in all our memories.

Posted by Lisa Kephart - Ankeny, IA - Classmate   November 26, 2019

I worked with Matt on several occasions at Camp Dodge and the National Gard in Boone doing Deployment Ready Dental Exams for the Department of Defense
several years ago. It was a pleasure working with and knowing Matt. He was a good man and I'm sure a good dentist.

Posted by Walter Stidwell DDS - Ames, IA - Acquaintance   November 26, 2019

I was referred to Matt by my daughter Merissa when he had his dental practice on Cherry Street. So have been going to Matt for many years for my dental work .
He was one of the nicest young men that I had ever met. Very caring for all. Was always sincere and passionate about life itself. I am so deeply sadden to hear about Matt's passing. I extend my deepest heartfelt sympathy and prayers to his wife and children and extended family. May Matt Rest in Peace now. He fought like a great warrior. Amen.

Posted by Gloria Hamilton - DES MOINES, IA - Friend   November 26, 2019

We are so sorry to hear of Dr. Matt's passing. He became our dentist in the Johnston days and we loved him so much that we followed him to Ankeny. Always so kind and caring... and brave in his fight against cancer. Our sincere sympathy to his family and the staff at Ankeny Dental Professionals. He will be missed.

LuAnn and Phil Folkers

Posted by LuAnn and Phil Folkers - Ankeny, IA   November 26, 2019

I'm so sorry for your loss.

Posted by Robert Siegel - Colfax, IA - Classmate   November 25, 2019

May each of you feel all the love from each person touched by your husband, son, father & brother in all fascists of his life. Matt was a good guy & it was our privilege to know him. Prayers you may find comfort in our Lord & knowing he is now pain free in his presence .

Posted by Dick & Gayle Hendrix - Ankeny, IA - Acquaintance   November 25, 2019

I always enjoyed talking about Iowa Wrestling when I had my dental appointments...will be missed!

Posted by Craig & Sharon Payne - Mitchellville, IA   November 25, 2019

I always felt better just knowing that Matt was with us at the beginning in Iraq. Rest up above with the Saints and praise to almighty God.

Posted by Christopher White - Norwalk, IA - Served in the Military together   November 25, 2019

Sorry, for your loss. Matt was a special person placed on this earth to do good things. Will miss him. Prayers to his family

Posted by Deborah Cunningham - Ankeny, IA - Friend   November 25, 2019

RIP Matt. Condolences to your family.

Posted by Terri Mishler - Bondurant, IA - Friend   November 25, 2019

What a soft hearted, quiet, gentle giant we had in our dental class. Matt was always bright eyed and ready to learn and do everything he could to better his profession. He will definitely be missed in many aspects of his life here on earth. Our heartfelt sympathy and love as you go through this difficult time.

Posted by Karen and Bruce Wolf - Waverly, IA - Classmate   November 25, 2019

Matt was such a kind and caring man. He would alway share a memory about my husband who had passed to calm me down. Prayers to his family. You will be missed. Rest in Jesus arms my friend.

Posted by Mary Akin - Slater, IA - Friend   November 25, 2019

With our deepest sympathy to Brea and the kids, and to the Staff at Ankeny Dental Professionals. Dr. McCullough was a great dentist, friend and boss!!
Rest easy Dr. Matt, you gave it all you had and we will never forget you and how you made us feel!
In love and prayer always,
Steve & Cheryl Schoof

Posted by Cheryl Schoof - Ankeny, IA - Coworker   November 25, 2019

My sincerest condolences to Brea, your kids and the rest of your family. How Matt battled and lived the past several years was truly inspiring. He was a great man, proud to have known him.

Posted by Jason Niegsch - Ames, IA - Friend   November 25, 2019

So very sorry to hear this. I didn't personally go to him but I always heard good things about him. His family and friends will be in my prayers.

Posted by Chris Stiltz - Urbandale, IA - Acquaintance   November 25, 2019

So shy when winning the run, kick and pass contest and then being interviewed on TV.
Condolences!

Posted by Bev Hartgrave - Louisburg, KS - Acquaintance   November 25, 2019

What a special angel on earth. He has been my dentist since he opened his first clinic and I loved him so much.

Posted by Sharon Howell - Waukee, IA - Friend   November 25, 2019

It was my honor to Matt a colleague in the dental community and while serving on the Iowa Dental Board. Matt's kindness, intelligence, and insightfulness stood out like a sore thumb. I cherish the fact that our paths crossed and always marveled at the manner in which Matt addressed his tragic illness. While I am 20 years Matt's senior, he taught me through his quiet strength a true lesson in life. My prayers and deepest sympathy go out to the McCullough family for your loss at an age much too young. Take comfort in knowing that your love for Matt fulfilled him both in good times and bad.

Posted by Michael Rovner - West Des Moines, IA - Coworker   November 25, 2019

Jim Pat and family condolences and prayers for your family

Posted by Ed Sue Strobl - Rock Island, IL - Coworker   November 25, 2019

McCullough Family, I am so sad and sorry for your loss. Matt and I were dental school classmates and graduated together in 1998. We played on our dental school intramural softball team for many years together. Matt was a great person, athlete, and dentist, and I'm certain an even better Husband and Father. I pray the Lord wraps you in his love during this very difficult time. God bless your family.

Chris Holahan
University of Iowa Grad 1994
University of Iowa Dental College Grad, 1998

Posted by Christopher Holahan - Cedar Falls, IA - Classmate   November 25, 2019

Praying that our Lord and Savior will wrap his loving arms around Jim and Pat and all of Matt's family and friends, so they can feel the comfort and strength of His love. May the memories of Matt always bring warmth to your heart and a smile to your face. God Bless All of You! Steve & Denise Bogle

Posted by Steve & Denise Bogle - Ankeny, IA - Served in the Military together   November 25, 2019

Our thoughts and prayers to your family.

Posted by John and Angela Bissell - Bethesda, MD - Classmate   November 25, 2019

There is no father more proud of his sons than Colonel Jim McCullough is of both Gregg & Matt. I heard about both of them from Jim when Jim was still serving in the Iowa Army National Guard.

I was able to meet both Matt & Gregg as they served as Citizen-Soldiers. Matt was among the first Iowa Army National Guard Soldiers to deploy to Iraq. I remember talking with him at the Camp Dodge Theater as he was being processed for Active Duty. He basically said at that time that we all have a job to do, and I am ready to do mine.

Matt was an honorable man. I was so sorry to hear that he was suffering from cancer, and of course sickened to hear that he has now passed. No doubt the characteristics and was that he lived his life has been instilled in those closest to him, and he will for sure live on in all of you in that way. My deepest condolences to the McCullough family. The Iowa Army National Guard family joins all of you in mourning Matt's passing. Respect!

Posted by Todd Jacobus - Des Moines - Served in the Military together   November 25, 2019

My sympathies over your loss. I am a coworker with his father.

Posted by Robert Pitts - Cabot, AR - Coworker   November 24, 2019