Far-Right in Chatham Emergency Services, Part 2: Matthew Mayo

Update 12/12/2019: Matthew Mayo relocated to Reno, Nevada a few months ago.

This is the second of two articles on far-Right employees at Chatham Emergency Services, a not for profit company which provides Fire, Emergency Medical and Security services in Chatham County (in and near Savannah, Georgia). For our first article, see here.

Matthew Thomas Mayo, also known as Bodi Mayo, is a basic Emergency Medical Technician who has been employed with Chatham Emergency Services since May 2018. Prior to joining Chatham Emergency Services, Mayo worked as a fireman with Effingham County Fire & Rescue. Mayo is also a “gothi” (chieftain-priest) in the Asatru Folk Assembly (AFA), a whites-only heathen organization with deep ties to the broader white power movement. By “heathen”, we mean someone who worships the pre-Christian gods of Germanic Europe. Many heathens are not racist – but the AFA certainly is. The anti-extremist Southern Poverty Law Center has designated the AFA as a hate group for its “neo-Völkisch” ideology and extensive links to white nationalism. Matthew Mayo personally circulates far-Right propaganda on social media and networks with other white nationalists. Mayo even belongs to an online group called the White Nationalist Alliance, which is explicitly “in support of National Socialism and Hitler”.

Matthew Thomas Mayo in front of Asatru Folk Assembly flag

Mayo is a longstanding member of the AFA. According to a 2012 interview, Mayo became a member of the AFA “in the past year” and had been a heathen for many years before. In 2012, Mayo assumed the title of the AFA’s “Military Folkbuilder”, a liaison person for military members and veterans in the whites-only organization. The same interview states that Mayo had been a Marine in the early 1990s. At the time of writing, Mayo is not listed as an AFA “Folkbuilder” on the organization’s website and the AFA’s Military Program appears mostly inactive. Mayo still flaunts his affiliation with the Asatru Folk Assembly on his social media pages and remains active within the organization.

Picture from 2016 AFA “Deep South” gathering includes Matthew Mayo in foreground; “Ravensblood Kindred” members Trent East, Karen Woodward, and Dalton Woodward; and (on right) AFA leader Matthew Flavel.

On social media, Mayo stays in touch with many AFA members, including Trent East as well as Dalton and Karen Woodward of the white nationalist “Ravensblood Kindred”, which we wrote about earlier this year. In addition, Matthew Mayo is connected to Robert Stamm, who was removed from his job as a Sergeant with the Virginia Capitol Police this April after anti-fascists revealed Stamm’s ties to the AFA. Mayo is also in communication with Matthew Flavel, the Alsherjargothi or main leader of the AFA. As leader, Flavel does not disguise his far-Right affiliations. For example, Flavel posed in a group photo with members of the white supremacist Rise Above Movement after a day of street-fighting in Berkeley, California. Matthew Mayo is online friends with members of other white power groups such as the League of the South and the Northwest Front. Mayo’s Facebook account follows pages for white nationalist projects such as Red Ice and the racist/Southern secessionist Identity Dixie/Rebel Yell.

Propaganda image shared on Matthew Mayo’s Facebook account

Matthew Mayo circulates far-Right propaganda. On his Facebook page, Mayo posted an image featuring the slogan “Take back our future” accompanied by the Black Sun/Schwarze Sonne symbol used by neo-Nazis and the far-Right. On Instagram, Mayo has shared propaganda for the white nationalist “Defend Evropa”. Mayo also circulated an image of a Death’s Head/ Totenkopf used by the Nazi SS, modified so that the skull is wearing sunglasses and accompanied by the slogan “Surf the Kali Yuga”. The theme of Kali Yuga – the “age of strife” in the Hindu cyclic conception of time – was adopted by 20th Century far-Right thinkers such as Savitri Devi and Julius Evola. The “Surf the Kali Yuga” design shared by Matthew Mayo on Instagram was popularized by the white supremacist organization American Vanguard/Vanguard America, who sold this image on a t-shirt. In yet another post, Mayo communicated his belief in racial separation when he shared an image of a young white woman, accompanied by the slogan “I’m this pretty because both of my parents are white.”

On the Russia-based VKontakte (VK) social networking site, Mayo uses a profile image originally from a Nazi Party propaganda poster, but altered so that a Confederate battle flag replaces the Nazi flag in the background. On VK, Mayo is also a member of the White Nationalist Alliance, an online group which states that it is “in support of National Socialism and Hitler”. (Mayo’s associate in the AFA, Nazi-sympathizer Trent East, is also part of the “White Nationalist Alliance” group on VK.) The White Nationalist Alliance group on VK recently changed its permissions so that it is private. Due to this change, membership in the group is no longer visible on the public pages of its participants. However, we archived Mayo’s VK page to a third-party website before this change of permissions. Mayo’s membership in the “White Nationalist Alliance” neo-Nazi page is clear from this earlier archive.

White Nationalist Alliance mission statement. Matthew Mayo is a member.

Since Mayo is a member of a racist heathen organization, shares white nationalist propaganda, networks with other members of the far-Right, and is part of an online group for neo-Nazis, we believe that Chatham County residents should not be required to trust Mayo with their lives. When white nationalists are allowed to infiltrate crucial positions such as emergency services, this creates opportunities for abuse and places members of marginalized communities at risk. Almost half the population of Chatham County is non-white and every one of these people would be vulnerable in the case of a medical emergency.

If you are concerned about Matthew Mayo, we encourage you to reach out to Chatham Emergency Services (be sure to call their office, not dispatch). You may want to read our first article about another far-Right member of Chatham Emergency Services before calling so that you can raise concerns about both employees at the same time.

If you have further information on Matthew Mayo or other far-Right organizers in our region, please get in touch with Atlanta Antifascists.