Cover photo for Matthew Bynum Smitherman's Obituary
1988 Matthew 2022

Matthew Bynum Smitherman

October 4, 1988 — December 11, 2022

Matthew Bynum Smitherman, 34, of Sealevel, NC went to be with our Lord on Sunday, December 11, 2022, at Carteret Health Care of Morehead City. He passed peacefully from the arms of his loving parents to go sit on Jesus’ lap. 

Matthew was born October 4, 1988, at Forsyth Hospital in Winston-Salem, NC to Deanna and Bryce Smitherman, Jr.

Matthew graduated in 2007 from Forbush High School in East Bend, NC. He went on to Beyond Academics for a two-year program at UNCG. Matthew loved the outdoors. He enjoyed riding his four-wheeler, deer hunting, fishing, and playing golf.

Matthew represented NC in the International Special Olympics on the golf team. He brought home the bronze medal. His favorite golf partner was his great uncle, Larry Matthews, who certainly lived up to that title for Matthew and their golf games.  

Matthew was an old soul who really liked to visit and be surrounded by people. He loved hugs and had a contagious smile like no other. He could light up a room with his smile. He suffered from a rare disorder called Cockayne Syndrome. It is a genetic disorder he was born with but wasn’t diagnosed until much later in his life. It really took its toll on him within the last 5 years. 

Matthew was preceded in death by his paternal grandparents, Mollie and Bryce Smitherman; aunt, Janice Baity; and his service dog and soulmate, Oreo.

Matthew is survived by his parents, Deanna and Bryce Smitherman, Jr. of Sealevel, NC; brother, Bryan (Ashley) Smitherman of Durham, NC; sister, Rachel (Gino) Amato of Yadkinville, NC; five nieces and nephews, Wyatt Smitherman, Yates Smitherman, Mikenna Goodman, Jace Loman, and Alana Amato; maternal grandparents, Sue and Dean Matthews of East Bend, NC; aunt, Emily (Eric) Hazen of East Bend, NC; cousins, Oliver, Isaac, and Josey Hazen; uncle, James (Karen) Smitherman and cousin, Jade; uncle, Charles (Denise) Smitherman and cousins, Ashley Miller and Miranda Hines; and uncle, Steve Baity and cousin, Rhonda Finney. Matthew also leaves behind his new service puppy, Moe. 

A memorial service will be held at 3:00 pm on Saturday, December 17, 2022 at Gentry Family Funeral Service in East Bend, NC. The family will receive friends after the service at the funeral home. There will also be a memorial service in Sealevel, NC at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to one of the following: Share and Care Cockayne Syndrome Network, Special Olympics of Forsyth County, and Shady Grove UMC Cemetery Fund. 

Gentry Family Funeral Service of East Bend is serving the Smitherman family.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Service

Saturday, December 17, 2022

Starts at 3:00 pm (Eastern time)

Gentry Family Funeral Service

428 East Main Street, East Bend, NC 27018

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