As you can imagine, through the course of a year I meet so many incredible children who have more bravery and tenacity than I could even imagine.
This year I'm riding for Ryan! Ryan Casey Lewis came to Children's with a challenging upbringing and sick as can be. His road to recovery was not a fast or easy one, with lots of ups and downs, but he was determined and had a tenacity I could only dream of. Not only did Ryan's body heal while he was at children's, his mind grew, his heart warmed, and he left an incredible human being! Staying in touch with Ryan when he would return to Children's for follow up visits was always fun. He had a view on life that was unlike anyone else's. As Ryan continued to mature he became someone that people enjoyed being around and looked up to. He was an inspiration. He was an amazing kid, wise beyond his years, full of snarky responses, and kindness that extended to strangers.
Ryan passed this May, but the impact he left behind was incredible. Ryan was a liver recipient and was able to pay it forward, donating his own kidneys. He loved each day bigger and better than many of us do and this year I'm going to ride for Ryan. This ride will be a celebration of pushing yourself, of extending kindness to strangers, and probably some snark as well.