Our beautiful Matthew Maynard Robinson (49 yrs), of Irvine, California, passed away peacefully on February 3, 2021, after a forever hopeful, 3.5 year battle with cancer. His wife and father by his side, holding his hands and loving him immensely. Matthew’s cherished mother, Susan Maynard Robinson, predeceased him on September 3rd, 2016. Matthew is survived by his beloved wife and soul mate of 17 years (Kristy M. Robinson), and his father and best friend (Harold A. (Rob) Robinson). Matthew was the only child of Harold and Susan, and had very close, loving relationships with family members that survived him; his aunt (Ann Maynard Gray), cousins (Rick & Dana Gray) and his mother, father and sister in-law (Christopher, Kathy and Jessica King). Matthew and Kristy moved to Irvine in 2015, for the excitement to work for Activision/Blizzard, spend more time with their families and enjoy the life they loved together.
Matthew (MMR to so many who knew him) was born at the US Air Force Academy Hospital in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and moved to Irvine, California with his parents as a toddler. His father, Harold (Rob), was in the US Air Force. Later, he held multiple director and VP-level positions in operations & logistics. Matt loved telling stories of fishing with his Dad with his orange tackle box or waiting on his big wheel at the end of their block to race his Dad home when he returned from work. After multiple retirements, Rob now serves as a Hoag-Newport Hospital Transport and Emergency Departments Volunteer. Matthew’s mother, Susan, was a teacher. She stayed home to raise Matt, while owning and running her own small business. She was a loving wife and mother, talented painter and designer, and a bookworm with a small library in their home. Matt told stories about the game she made for him called ‘Rent a Brain’; he’d learn things to earn money. Susan was extremely intelligent and had a spark that also lived in Matt. He told Kristy, weekly that he “loved both his parents so much”.
Matt received his Bachelor of Science from Sonoma State University in 1996, with emphasis in Marketing, Physics and English Literature. He developed lifelong friends through the Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternity (SAE) and fully embraced the ‘SAE True Gentleman’ code. He travelled internationally with his parents, aunt & cousins, and also while studying with the ‘Semester at Sea’ college program; photographing and sketching his memories. Matthew was naturally artistic, and his childhood friends remember his Halloween paint productions, and his skateboard competition photography. He learned guitar and piano never limiting himself in learning something new. He started his career in VFX for Film as a CG Supervisor/Lighting Supervisor at Tippett Studio in Berkeley, Ca. He passionately worked for over 6 years on films like Matrix, Constantine, Blade 2, Hellboy & Hollowman. He held Tippett Studio and the friendships he made, in a special place in his heart, and he and Kristy met there, fell in love and celebrated their life every day forward. Matt joined Industrial Light & Magic with the passion he is known for, as a TD/Senior Digital Artist & Jedi Master’s Instructor in Cinematography. Anyone who knows Matt, knows he would teach you the ‘Physics of Light and Matter’ if you stood still long enough and there was a whiteboard nearby. He loved working with his teams and friends on films like Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, Men in Black 2 and others. He taught his cinematography curriculum for ILM in Singapore as well. He and Kristy moved to London, England while he worked for Double-Negative as a 3D Supervisor/Training Supervisor. They were fortunate to visit France, Italy, Switzerland and others while living there. They moved to Vancouver, Canada while Matt worked for Scanline VFX, before joining Blizzard Entertainment in Irvine, Ca in 2015 as their Cinematics Training Manager, for the Story & Franchise Division. Matt was passionate and proud to work for almost 6 years with his friends and collegues at Blizzard. He was extremely excited to receive his 5-year commemorative Blizzard Sword, as he loved to celebrate and commemorate milestones and accomplishments; his own as well as those of others. He taught himself Ham Radio Communications for many years, and within a year of moving to Irvine, he surpassed his Amateur Radio License and earned his Extra Class Ham Radio Operator License. He was proud of this, and inspired a few friends to earn their amateur license. He always saw the potential in others and believed in their ability to learn anything; a special connection with Jessica, his sister-in-law, was a particularly beautiful example of his ability to see her abilities, and change the way she would experience the world from then forward. After joining Blizzard, he was recruited by Chapman University of Orange, CA as an adjunct professor in their Dodge College of Film and Media Arts, where he taught multiple courses of his, for multiple years while working simultaneously at Blizzard.
Matthew and Kristy had a beautiful marriage, love and life together for 17 years. They loved spending time with both their families and friends, building their little ‘home in the trees’ as Matt coined it, and all their travels together. Hawaii and Disneyland were two of their favorite places. Their 10-year Wedding Anniversary was this year; and they celebrated their love to the very end, side by side with audio messages of love from family and friends, a Southern California sunset, a kiss and getting to sing one of their favorite songs together.
A message from both our families and Kristy:
We want to thank our families, friends, colleagues and Matt’s medical teams for all the love, support, and friendship shared over the years. Since Matthew’s passing, an enormous outpouring of heartfelt sentiments in all forms from family, lifelong friends, colleagues from all over the world, Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity brothers, ham radio communication friends, Matt’s students, and neighbors has been overwhelming. I’d like to share some of the thoughtful words in those messages that were used to describe Matthew and who he was: ‘Best teacher and mentor, a gentleman in every sense, honest, a wealth of knowledge, extremely loving person, always respectful to others, warm and funny, humble, generous and giving, a truly wonderful man, favorite person to work with, optimistic and always welcoming, truly inspiring, stood up for others, often with a scotch to share when needed, absolute role model, one of the smartest people I know, always made others feel welcome, changed my life and career path, always a warm smile to welcome anyone, a beautiful soul, always there for others, stood up for what was right’. One of these beautiful sentiments that I feel captures so much of Matt, from another caring person in Matt’s life was this,
“Matt was the best of us, taught us to be better people by example.
A genuine, loving human being”
Matthew expressed that his childhood was wonderful for him and he chose to share that happiness with everyone throughout his life. Matt battled his illness every day with the same strength, hope and positivity that he always shared. He smiled every day and made others feel seen, heard and loved. I truly believe he would want others to continue to be inspired by and feel the light he worked so hard to share with us all.
Non-Gathering – Family Honoring – Week of March 22nd
Off of Corona Del Mar, Newport Beach, California
This location has special meaning to Matthew’s family and to Matthew and Kristy.
Four family members will honor him with Gardenia flowers and a few words of love.
To participate remotely: On Tuesday, March 23rd: Take a walk somewhere in the light, a sunrise or sunset, somewhere beautiful or simply memorable to you and Matt, and take a photo. Share your name, and how you knew Matt, along with your photo to his Facebook or Memorial page.
Date, time and place to be determined & communicated soon as social restrictions lift
In lieu of flowers:
The ‘Matthew M. Robinson Memorial Fund’ has been set up by Mark Brown, Matthew’s close friend and direct supervisor at Blizzard Entertainment. All funds will be donated to charitable causes near to Matthew’s heart, to continue Matt’s determination to be of service to others and bring enrichment to the lives of everyone he met.
Visit: www.gofundme.com and type ‘Matthew M. Robinson’ in the search field
You can copy this link and paste it in your browser: