For the first time in book form, Judy Shepard shares memories of Matthew, their life as a typical American family, and the impact of his death. The Meaning of Matthew follows the Shepard family in the days immediately after the crime, when Judy and Dennis traveled to see their incapacitated son, kept alive by life-support machines; shows how the Shepards learned of the incredible response from strangers all across the world, who held candlelight vigils and memorial services for their child; and, finally reveals how Judy and Dennis struggled to navigate the legal system, helping prosecutors to convict Matthew’s murderers.

The Meaning of Matthew Book Cover

Heart-wrenchingly honest, Judy Shepard describes how she handled the crippling loss of her child in the public eye and, eventually, came to realize that both she and Matthew – even in death – had a rare opportunity to prevent future intolerance and prejudice.