Streaming Media


Oral History interview of Matthew Lenavitt. Interview conducted by Welch, Rachel Claire; Giaccone, Benjamin at ESP Productions, Orlando, FL.


0:00 Intro; 0:41 lived in Germany growing up; 1:14 enlisted in the army; 1:36 technical engineer specialist; 2:21 experience in boot camp; 3:14 specialized training for Iraq; IEDS, training shots, no knowledge of culture before arriving; 4:49 first time in war zone; 7:12 sleeping and living conditions on base; 7:50 weather in Iraq; 8:30 daily life as a soldier in Iraq; 10:08 communication back home; 11:41 r and r; 12:50 interaction with locals in Iraq; 13:43 living conditions of locals in Iraq; 16:47 combat in Iraq; 17:14 weapons – M-4 + 9mm; training to become 51-Tango; 18:12 injured – no, IEDS; 19:20 medals for service – Army Accommodating; War on Terror; 20:00 good luck charms and superstitions, morale, friends from the military; 21:22 media portrayal of military; 22:20 building school in Iraq; 23:19 coming home from Iraq – hero’s welcome; 24:40 end of service – 2010; did not re-enlist because of daughter; 25:35 civilian life – keeping in touch with his battle buddy; excited to come back; 28:44 VA medical center and GI Bill; 29:25 future plans; 29:50 alcohol and drug abuse of soldiers, PTSD; 32:38 advice to first time soldiers, attitude toward war/military, final thoughts

Place of Birth

Bucyrus (Ohio)




White - Non Hispanic

War or Conflict

Operation Iraqi Freedom

Interview Date


Collection Description

Contains logs, audio and video recordings of interviews with Central Florida's veterans as part of a history class project for the students at the University of Central Florida (UCF). The UCF Community Veterans History Project(CVHP) started in fall 2010. It collects, preserves, and makes accessible to the public the experiences of Central Florida's veterans so that future generations will better understand the realities of conflict. It is a collaborative endeavor supported by multiple departments and offices at UCF. The veterans' histories are archived and made digitally available through the UCF library and selected materials are contributed to the Veterans History Project at the Library of Congress.

Contributor Affiliation / Organization

RICHES; University of Central Florida


Department of History, University of Central Florida


All rights are held by the respective holding institution. This material is posted publicly for non-profit educational uses, excluding printed publication. For permission to reproduce and/or for copyright information contact Special Collections and University Archives, University of Central Florida Libraries, (407) 823-2576.


University of Central Florida Libraries, Special Collections and University Archives

Contributing Project

UCF Community Veterans History Project

Document Type