Matthew D. Helm grew up in the small town of Redfield, South Dakota. After graduating from Redfield Public High School he joined the U.S. Marines. After serving in Washington State he met his fiancée, Veronica and were afterwards married. He was assigned to 3rd Battalion 7th Marines in Twenty-Nine Palms, California. From there his unit was deployed to Kuwait, then Iraq.
After serving a tour in Iraq, he was honorably discharged from the Marines and began furthering his education at the University of Washington. He is in his final year of his undergraduate studies and is presently applying for graduate school with the hopes of continuing his study in American history with a focus on the 19th century west.