Matthew Charles Bierman, 28, passed away unexpectedly in his sleep early Wednesday morning, June 29, 2016 at the home he shared with his fiancée, Whitney Wu-Chu. The two were college sweethearts, and planned on marrying next year.
Matt is survived by his parents Lori and Kenny Bierman, as well as his sister and brother-in-law Caitlyn and Alex Cordova. A new uncle, his niece Riley will grow up hearing stories of Matt’s giant heart, quick wit, and fierce loyalty. Matt leaves behind his grandmothers Ruth Bonner and Mimi Little, aunts and uncles, Diane Lewis and Barry Russo, Cathy and Dennis Klein, Jayne Bierman, six cousins, niece Fianna Jade and future brother-in-law Patrick McGovern. Matt also leaves behind his large family of friends, spanning from Europe, to Wales, to New Jersey, to California, to Asia.
Matt was born September 23, 1987 and grew up in Cranford, New Jersey. A lifelong fan of Jeeps and the New York Yankees, he led an active life. He assumed leadership positions within the Boy Scouts, eventually earning the rank of Eagle Scout. He played the viola for many years for both the New Jersey Youth Orchestra and the NJSO Youth Orchestra. Always up for a challenge, he graduated top of his class at the Union County Magnet High School, where he applied his drafting prowess to the world of engineering. Obtaining his B.S. in Civil Engineering and his M.S. in Transportation Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, he went on to build a new life in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Matt joined the American Society of Civil Engineers, as well as the Institute of Transportation Engineers, eventually becoming a civil rail engineer for TranSystems in Oakland.
He was deeply committed to his college fraternity where he made many friends and met his fiancée, Whitney. He joined Sigma Phi Society in his sophomore year, and moved into the fraternity house, Thorsen House. The natural leader that Matt was, he served in many leadership roles, including President and House Manager, and as Alumni Board Vice President. He will be missed but not forgotten for the everlasting contributions he made to Sigma Phi.
A visitation will be held on Friday, July 8, 2016 from to 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. and 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. at the Bradley, Haeberle & Barth Funeral Home, 1100 Pine Avenue, Union, NJ 07083. A funeral service will be 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, July 9, 2016 at the First Congregational Church of Westfield, 125 Elmer St, Westfield, NJ 07090. Cremation will be private. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to either The Sigma Phi Educational Foundation or The Thorsen House Restoration Fund. The Sigma Phi Educational Foundation, with “In Memory of Matthew Bierman” in the memo line, to 286 Birchwood Drive, c/o Stan Ferber, Moraga, CA 94556. The Sigma Phi Educational Foundation, with “Thorsen House Restoration Fund” in the memo line, to PO Box 57417, c/o David Pauls, Executive Director, Tucson, AZ 85711-7417.