Ryan's story

Ryan was diagnosed with Stage 4 High Risk Neuroblastoma N-MYC amplified in July 2008. He was out of treatment for just over a year when in November 2010 our lives were again turned upside down when we discovered the disease had returned in his bones and bone marrow. After a year of treatment re-staging scans in November 2011 showed that he had again achieved remission.

However just 3 months later, in February 2012, end of treatment scans gave us the devastating news that the disease has returned, this time with a tumour near his spine. In March Ryan started 4 weeks of radiotherapy followed by chemotherapy which is on-going. Re-staging scans in May and August showed no evidence of disease. On the 4th September 2012 Ryan received treatment in Tubingen for a haplo-identical stem cell transplant. He is a happy, active boy who is now enjoying life to the full.

Friday, 30 November 2012

Ryan Edwards meets Travis Pastrana!

Inside the empty arena watching practice sessions
We are people who are late, for everything.  But yesterday we knew that we couldn't be late and so we were deliberately early and ended up arriving in Dusseldorf at 4pm for a 6.30pm meeting with Travis Pastrana!  We killed a bit of time and then Sally the lady from Make A Wish UK (who had flown over especially for the wish) arranged for us to meet at the ISS Dome at 5pm.   When we arrived we asked the Tour Manager where we could sit and wait for Travis but he asked us if we would like to watch the practice while the stadium was empty.  Wow! We jumped at the chance.  There was an hour of practice before the show and we got to watch 45 minutes of motorbikes doing backflips, jumps, tail whips and every trick in the book.  He also saw big jumps and stunts on skateboards, roller skates, BMX and scooters.  The only other people in the stadium were press photographers!  

It was fantastic, we hadn't expected to see any of the show and had prepared Ryan just for a quick meeting with Travis.

Next it was time to go backstage and wait for Travis with Ryan literally pulling us along.  We got to a room backstage and sat and waited.  All of a sudden Travis appeared in the room 'Hi Ryan, I'm Travis!'  And at that moment Ryan's dream turned into a reality.  Travis chatted to Ryan like a friend, they had a high five and sat next to each other on a tote box talking.  Ryan had wanted to show Travis a photo of his motorbike because he had Travis' number 199 on the side and so out came the iPad and he got that chance.

Ryan meets his hero Travis Pastrana

Ryan had thought of some questions that he wanted to ask Travis:
What is on your christmas list? Who would you most like to meet? Which was your most painful accident? Great questions! Ryan and Travis both had something in common - they both want to be at home for christmas with their families - lets hope that comes true for both of them.  Ryan was also lucky enough to meet Josh Sheehan, Joleene Van Vugt, Lyn-z Pastrana and Adam Jones together with several other members of the team. He got a signed poster and t-shirt and I know that it will be on his bedroom wall for many years to come.  After chatting away to Travis and Josh for about 35 minutes a security guard came to tell Travis he was needed in the VIP area to meet all the people that paid to get that bit closer to the stars of the show (these are the tickets we had paid for in London).  Ryan made sure he got a goodbye hug from Travis and was ready for him to leave but instead Travis said 'Hey why don't you come with us?'

with Travis Pastrana and Josh Sheehan

Oh my god! I don't think we could believe it! Ryan said 'Travis can I meet Lyn-z please?' and so while everyone was waiting Travis took Ryan into a changing room where Lyn-z was setting up her skateboard ready for the show.  Ryan had been waving to her during the practice and they had a quick chat before the three of us and Sally and Travis and about 9 of the Nitro Circus crew walked through the corridors backstage towards VIP area.  Along the way we bumped into other members of the team and each time Travis would stop them and introduce them to Ryan explaining what did in the show.  For me this was the best bit seeing Ryan walking next to such a huge super star gazing up at him and the look on his face said it all.

Then we had to take the lift up to the VIP area.  To be crammed in a lift with such famous, yet down to earth, people was a very surreal experience.

with Jolene Van Vugt

Ryan saw the reaction of the crowd when Travis walked out into the VIP area and waited excitedly for him to return.  The show started at 7.30 and so eventually the time came for Travis to leave us.  I had worried that Ryan might get a bit upset but he didn't, he gave him another hug and said Bye, and just before Travis disappeared into the VIP lift Ryan shouted 'Bye Trav' and they waved a final goodbye.

Sally, on behalf of Make A Wish, gave Ryan some spending money and he bought a t-shirt, programme and key-ring.  I can honestly say that Ryan was made to feel the happiest person in the world yesterday, he was treated like one of the gang and absolutely loved every single minute.  I am sure that these memories will remain with Ryan forever.

We cannot thank Travis Pastrana, the Nitro Circus crew and Make-A-Wish enough for giving us all this opportunity of a lifetime.  Seeing Ryan bursting with happiness was the best feeling ever and this day will give us all a good feeling for a very long time.

To end : Ryan telling his friends about his experience. Ryan:  'I saw TRAVIS yesterday!!'
Friends: 'Who?' 

1 comment:

  1. This is cuttest thing ever. Stay strong, little buddy :)