Baldwin County

Family raising money for artificial reef to honor man lost in Gulf of Mexico

PERDIDO, Ala. (WKRG) - It’s a unique tribute, and family members say there’s really no better way to remember Matthew Willis.

Back in January, the 40-year-old man, also known as Mattie to his friends, fell off of a charter boat, more than 50 miles off the coast of Fort Morgan. His body was never recovered.  

Family members say they remember him as a man who loved south Baldwin County, loved the outdoors and loved being on the water.  

For the past several weeks, family members have been raising money online to pay for an artificial reef. They say it’s a good way to help remember his life and legacy.

"We’re going to be able to put mementos and things, fishing poles, mugs, things he enjoyed and it will be dropped at the coordinates he went overboard so he can have life around him and be part of the ecosystem like he would have wanted to do," said Mattie's brother Aaron Willis.   

They’re still raising money for this campaign, and for more information on that you can click here.  

Mobile County

Baldwin County

Northwest Florida