Dean E. Mattson – Lieutenant Colonel, United States Army


Lieutenant Colonel Dean E. Mattson,  57, from California, was assigned to the U.S. Army Information Support Center, Pentagon. He served in The Army for more than 23 years.


Was Planning to Surprise Mother on 85th Birthday

December 2, 2001

Lieutenant Colonel Dean E. Mattson, 57, was less than three months away from retiring, after more than 35 years in the Army, when he was killed as a result of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attack on the Pentagon.

“I was always informed he was going to retire at the end of December, but as it was,
he was going to be retired in November,” his mother, Bernice Mattson, said from the
family home in Luck, Wisconsin, where she recently celebrated her 85th birthday. “He had planed an 85th birthday party here, with his brothers. He was going to walk in and surprise me at my birthday party.”

Mattson was born and raised in Luck, about 65 miles northeast of Minneapolis. He was living in Alexandria, Virginia, at the time of the attack, and was serving as the executive officer for the Army Information Management Support Center in the Office of the Administrative Assistant to the Secretary of the Army. He had been in the military since being drafted in 1964. Before committing to the Army, his mother said, he had plans of becoming a Lutheran pastor.

“He was a single man, but he was very family-oriented,” his mom said, noting Uncle  Dean was always a big hit among his many nieces and nephews. “He was a very good housekeeper, and a very good cook. Everybody enjoyed him, he was always a cheerful  man.”

Her son also enjoyed the outdoors, Mattson said, and the two of them traveled together frequently. “We had the same likes,” she said. “He would take me to the Smithsonian. He took me to Florida and we toured all the way down to south of Orlando. We loved going to the mountains.”

A memorial service for her son held in Luck in late September was “tremendous,” Mattson said. Burial is planned for January 10, 2002, at Arlington National Cemetery.

In addition to his mother, Colonel Mattson is survived by three brothers, Glenn, Dwain and Dale, all of whom live in or near the town where they grew up.



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