Former Iced Earth singer Matt Barlow has teamed up with Fallen Blue, an amazing organization that supports the families of police officers killed in the line of duty and that promotes metal music while doing so! Can't think of a better combo, can you?

The 41-year-old vocalist issued a heartfelt and detailed explanation about why he has chosen to hang up his mic multiple times to serve his country and why Fallen Blue's mission is so important, since he has endured the loss of a colleague and friend.

Barlow joined Iced Earth in the early '90s and left the band in 2003. He would return in 2008 to contribute vocals to the band's 'The Crucible of Man: Something Wicked Part 2' album, but didn't stay in the group as a permanent member.

Barlow's statement for Fallen Blue:

"My name is Matthew Barlow. I am an American heavy metal vocalist who has performed with the bands Iced Earth (1994-2003 and 2007-2011) and Pyramaze (2007-2008). I have performed vocals on six studio albums, two live albums/DVDs, and multiple compilation and tribute albums. I am also a law enforcement officer.

I grew up in the town of Georgetown, Delaware, which is about 80 miles east of Washington D.C. In 2004, I was given the honor of becoming a sworn officer with the Georgetown Police Department. My goal to become a police officer started shortly after the events of 9/11/2001, the day that affected most every American and a large portion of the world.

On that morning, I was preparing to get on a tour bus. Iced Earth was about to start out for California to meet up with Judas Priest as support for their U.S. tour. For reasons that were all too apparent, that tour never happened. My feelings and thought processes took a definite turn that day, but not in the way others may have. I simply began to think of the life that my wife and I wanted, but had not yet realized; the children that we wanted, but did not yet have; and the understanding that this precious time we have on Earth is finite and fleeting. I thought that there must be a way that we could have the family we wanted, and I could serve my country and community as my family had.

When I was given the opportunity to attend the Delaware State Police Academy in September 2003, I considered it an absolute honor. When I graduated from the academy in February 2004, it was one of the greatest accomplishments of my life. Since then, it has been my privilege to work with the dedicated and proud men and woman of law enforcement.

That dedication, love, and loyalty was never more evident to me than after my brother officer, Patrolman Chad E. Spicer, was killed in the line of duty on September 1, 2009. The outpouring of support for Chad's family, in both law enforcement and civilian community, was tremendous. I know that the support for Chad's daughter and family will continue in his honor.

It is my hope that the work that Fallen Blue is doing will help the families of our fallen brothers and sisters. These men and woman that have passed, though not in the line of duty, dedicated their lives to the betterment and security of their country and community. They too, deserve our respect and support for the families they leave behind.

Cpl. Matthew Barlow"

To get more information on Fallen Blue, head over to their official website.

Watch Cpl. Matthew Barlow Sing the 'Star Spangled Banner'

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