Matthew MacTavish
Ensign DS9








October 1, 2327


May 21, 2375


Federation, Starfleet



Chief engineer


USS Livingston (2358-2366)
USS Enterprise-D (2366-2367)
USS Livingston (2367-2369)
Deep Space 9 (2374-2375)
Starfleet security (2375)


Ensign (2344-2355)
Lieutenant junior grade (2355-2358)
Lieutenant (2358-2369)
Senior chief petty officer (2372-2375)




Matthew MacTavish was a Starfleet officer who served on board the USS Livingston as Chief engineer, as well as the USS Enterprise-D, Deep Space 9 and Starfleet Security during the late 24th century.

Early Life

MacTavish was born on October 1st, 2327 in Sacramento, California. When he was five years old, he met a Starfleet officer who was visiting Sacramento while on shore leave. MacTavish was impressed with the officer's stories of space exploration and decided to pursue a Starfleet career when he grew up. MacTavish later entered Starfleet Academy in 2344, where he met his eventual best friend, Cadet Chakotay when they were assigned as roommates. MacTavish began studying engineering, with the hopes of becoming chief engineer on a Federation starship one day. He drove himself to complete the Academy, after he failed many tests and he became discouraged. Chakotay, a rising star at the Academy, helped MacTavish with his homework, teaching him warp theory and dilithium applications. MacTavish then became head of his class in the engineering department, earning honors in warp plasma theory. In 2348, MacTavish graduated and was assigned to the USS Merrimack with the rank of Ensign.

Starfleet Career

MacTavish spent several years on the Merrimack, even when Chakotay transferred off the ship in 2355. During the time MacTavish served on the ship, the Cardassian Wars broke out. The Merrimack was sent to the front lines by Starfleet and was engaged in numerous battles. During one engagement, the Merrimack was hit badly by a Cardassian Galor-class vessel. The Merrimack's tactical officer was killed in the battle, so MacTavish took his place. MacTavish never lost his cool during the heat of battle and was able to pinpoint the weakest part of the ship. He was able to destroy the Cardassian ship before it nearly caused a warp core breach on the Merrimack. Because of this action, MacTavish was promoted to Lieutenant junior grade. Three years later, Chakotay was promoted to Commander and gave MacTavish a break by requesting him as chief engineer on the USS Livingston. The ship's Captain, Grady Howard agreed with Chakotay and promoted him from Lieutenant Junior Grade to Lieutenant. MacTavish transferred off the Merrimack and arrived on the ship in 2358. During the first few months, MacTavish had to replace the entire engineering room after most of it was destroyed in a plasma storm. During the refit, Commander Chakotay became trapped in engineering after inadvertently closing the isolation door. MacTavish was able to beam in and rescue Chakotay before he was killed from warp plasma poisoning.

The Enterprise-D

In 2366, MacTavish was transferred to the USS Enterprise-D by Starfleet Command and served as a relief conn officer and an engineer. MacTavish was also trained by Dr. Beverly Crusher to become a medic. His medical training came in handy during a situation on Tuari VII. He and Commander William T. Riker were to beam down to the planet for a simple scouting mission. However, the Enterprise's transporter chief was given an inaccurate map of the beam down point. As a result, MacTavish and Riker were beamed down to the wrong location: on top of a mountain peak. The peak was not strong enough to support the both of them and they began to fall down the side of the mountain. Fortunately, a ledge broke their fall. MacTavish only had minor injuries, while Riker was bleeding badly. MacTavish ripped off a part of his uniform to make a tourniquet and wrapped it around Riker's bleeding arm. MacTavish managed to stabilize Riker until the Enterprise beamed them up. Dr. Crusher was impressed with MacTavish's medical care with Riker. She suggested he return to Earth and go to Starfleet Medical school. MacTavish politely declined her advice, telling her he only wanted to be an engineer. Despite enjoying his time on the Enterprise and the company of his fellow crewmembers, MacTavish missed serving on the Livingston and his old Academy friends. One day, MacTavish went to Captain Jean-Luc Picard's ready room and asked for a transfer back to the Livingston as the ship's chief engineer in 2367. Captain Picard granted his request and told MacTavish that the Enterprise would be losing one hell of an officer.

Return to the Livingston

MacTavish returned to the Livingston after the Enterprise rendezvoused with them in the Delphi system. MacTavish's CO, Captain Howard and his XO, Commander Chakotay welcomed him back warmly. A year later, in 2368, MacTavish's friend Chakotay learned of his father's death at the hand of the Cardassians. Chakotay decided to return to Earth to officially resign his commission. MacTavish tried to convince him otherwise, but Chakotay held firm.

While still serving as chief engineer, MacTavish received an encoded transmission from Chakotay. Chakotay revealed that he had joined the terrorist group, the Maquis, and asked MacTavish for help to evade Federation starships. MacTavish, at first, refused, but Chakotay asked him to help as a friend. MacTavish then covertly gave Chakotay all information about Federation ships patrolling the Cardassian DMZ. Two weeks later, Captain Howard and his security chief George Primmin on the Livingston discovered MacTavish's transmissions to Chakotay. He was arrested by Primmin and was held in the ship's brig until he could be tried for court-martial at the nearest starbase.

Court martial trial and imprisonment

At his court-martial trial, MacTavish's lawyer was Samuel T. Cogley, Jr. At the proceedings in 2369, Cogley argued that MacTavish's time as a soldier during the Cardassian Wars in the 2350s and his good behavior during his Starfleet career should be taken into account during his sentencing. The judge decided to have MacTavish stay in Starfleet, but demote him severely to a senior chief petty officer. MacTavish was also sentenced by the judge to three years at the New Zealand rehabilitation colony under maximum security for his punishment. In 2372, MacTavish was released from the New Zealand colony, where he began a new career as a chief.

Deep Space 9

His first duty as a senior chief petty officer entailed scrubbing a Federation garbage scow's plasma conduit for months in deep space under strict supervision by a security guard. In 2373, MacTavish learned that Chakotay had disappeared in 2371 in the Badlands and the ship sent to find him, the USS Voyager had also vanished. MacTavish was devastated at this news. Unknown to MacTavish, Chakotay was alive and well on board Voyager, deep in the Delta Quadrant. In 2374, Voyager's EMH, the Doctor, made contact with Starfleet and confirmed the crew of Voyager were alive, including Chakotay. MacTavish never found this out and continued to believe Chakotay was dead. Looking for some adventure after serving on the garbage scow, Chief MacTavish transferred to Deep Space 9 in 2374. He worked in station maintenance under Ensign Nog. After serving on Deep Space 9 for a year, MacTavish decided to return to Earth in 2375 and started working with Starfleet security.


During one night while MacTavish was scanning for Dominion ships, San Francisco was attacked by the Breen. MacTavish was one of the few Starfleet officers able to get to a shuttle and fight the Breen. While he and the other Starfleet shuttles fired phasers at the enemy ships, MacTavish realized that an anti-matter explosion from his shuttle would destroy one of the Breen ships. MacTavish piloted the shuttle under the lead Breen ship's nacelles. He then detonated the shuttle's warp core. The explosion sent the Breen ship crashing into San Francisco Bay. Fortunately, with the ship's destruction, the Breen ceased their attack and fled Earth. MacTavish was able to initiate a site-to-site transport off the shuttle just before it was destroyed. However, MacTavish rematerialized with a large piece of shrapnel from the shuttle embedded in his chest. The doctors tried to save his life, but he died the next morning from internal injuries to his vital organs. Commander Chakotay of the USS Voyager later learned of his old friend's death almost a year later when he received a letter from Captain Howard of the Livingston, via the Pathfinder Project in 2376. During Chakotay's vision quest, he asked his father, Kolopak, to watch over MacTavish as he entered the afterlife.