It is our sad duty to report the premature passing of Matt Hanner, an artist, a husband and father, and a truly wonderful person. I met Matt while a student at Columbia College and he was one of those rare people that you immediately take a liking to, his charm and intelligence were a delight to be around. The stories about his generosity, kindness, good humor, and friendship are far too many in number to address here. If you didn’t know him, someone you know did, they can tell you.

I contacted a mutual friend to see if he wanted to write this post. He expressed concern about what to say and was worried that he wouldn’t be able to transcend “Matt was awesome, one of the happiest, sweetest people I have ever met. If you knew him then you know that, if you didn’t know him it is sad that you will never have a chance to.” His concern was needless, that is beautiful and exactly what should be written about Matt.  I can’t possibly improve upon that.

Check out Matt’s work:

Please donate generously to the scholarship fund started in his memory:

The Matt Hanner Artistic Excellence Scholarship
Columbia College Chicago
Institutional Advancement
600 S. Michigan
Chicago, IL 60605

There is a visitation and service Monday.

Monday, Dec 19
3-6 visitation
6PM service
Dykes Funeral Home
2305 N Campbell
Valparaiso, Indiana

Update: Corrected Matt’s year of Birth. Also I received this published obituary.

MATTHEW ROWLAND HANNER PORTER, IN Matthew Rowland Hanner, age 40, passed away on Tuesday, December 13, 2011 at his home. He was born on April 13, 1971 in Columbus, OH to Patricia A. and the late Joseph A. Hanner. Matt was a resident of Porter, IN, formerly of Chicago, IL and Valparaiso, IN, an artist and stay-at-home dad. He was a 1989 Valparaiso High School graduate where he played on the Varsity basketball team, and graduated from Columbia College in Chicago, IL with honors. Matt is survived by his wife, Erika (nee Varricchio) Hanner of Porter, IN; children: Gigi Hanner and Josie Hanner; mother, Patricia A. Hanner of Valparaiso, IN; sister, Kathryn (Charles) Randolph of Seattle, WA; brother Mark (John Obligato) of Chicago IL; nieces, Laurel Mazar and Kelsey Randolph; nephews: Jack and Chase Krueger; mother-in-law and father-in-law: Frederick and Claudette Varricchio. He was preceded in death by his father in 2009. Friends may call at the Dykes Funeral Home, 2305 N. Campbell St., Valparaiso, IN on Monday, December 19, 2011 from 3:00-6:00 p.m. with a funeral service immediately following at 6:00 p.m. Cremation, Calvary Crematory, Portage, IN. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Matt Hanner Artistic Excellence Scholarship at Columbia College, Chicago, IL. Arrangements by Dykes Funeral Home, Inc. (219) 462-3125



two second walk