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Why Military Families Choose to Live in Prattville

Active duty and retired personnel enjoy the quality of life and so much more.

By Kevin Litwin on September 19, 2022

Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, which is about 10 miles from Prattville, AL

Located just 10 miles from Prattville, Maxwell Air Force Base is home to thousands of military and civilian personnel. Prattville is a popular location for those personnel and their families, and many of them choose to remain in Prattville and Autauga County when they retire.

One of those retirees is Joe Mathis, whose military resume includes earning his pilot wings in 1966, serving in Vietnam and teaching on the faculty at the U.S. Army’s Command & General Staff College in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

“I eventually ended up in Prattville teaching at the Air War College at Maxwell in the mid-1980s until I retired from active duty in 1990,” Mathis says.

“When I told my family I was about to retire from active duty, I asked them where they would like to live. They all said, ‘We want to stay in Prattville.’”

Joe Mathis

Joe and his wife, Tricia, are active with First Baptist Church, and Joe has always been involved in community activities. That includes once serving as executive director of the Prattville Area Chamber of Commerce. He is currently a board member with the Prattville YMCA and the Prattville Chamber.

“This is a great community,” Mathis says. “I notice in Prattville that whatever is good, the Prattville people will support it. People here always respond to good causes.”

Coming Back Home

Casey Cooley has been active-duty military for the past 24 years, currently in the Air Force Reserve and transitioning to Prattville in 2022 with his wife, Julie.

“Casey and I have bounced around often as a military family. We first were stationed in Prattville in 2004 and loved it,” Julie says. “Once we got the chance to move back here, we jumped at the opportunity.”

Casey has Air Force Reserve stints in Utah and Louisiana. Julie says she plans to join Prattville Rotary Club and work on committees for the Prattville Chamber, and Casey has been approached to join Prattville American Legion Post 122.

“Casey’s time is still mostly tied up with the military, but we can both say that Prattville is now our home,” Julie says. “We love it here.”

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