The Ryan Room


This website is a permanent memorial to Ryan Desjardins, 1979-2002.


Photos of Ryan at various ages – click here.  Multi-page Ryan photo album – click here.


Many of the messages below are from people in an email mailing list that Ryan often wrote to. To add your own message here, just email it to and it will appear within a day or so. And if you have photos that you can send by email, send those too.


See the article in the Burlington Post, below (March 27, 2002).



Drawing by Sabrina, “supergrassgirl”



18 March 2002 7:06 PM

ArF Doggy Dog


I'm sure as hell am gonna miss all the jokes and stuff Ryan used to send to this
distribution list. hehe =)
Used to fill my Inbox more than anyone else with that stuff ...
RIP bro , you'll never be forgotten
-Ryan Desjardins 1979-2002



Mon, 18 Mar 2002 19:22:52 –0500

Yvonne Desjardins


You said it Arf Doggy Dog - receiving e-mail will never be the same. I so looked forward to Ryan's hilarious jokes and pics...and you're right, he used to send lots.
Last night I actually sent him an e-mail and said goodbye...maybe a wacky thing to do because he'll never read it, but maybe in some strange way, he will know. I just wanted to see his name once more in my Sent Messages's so sad to think I can never e-mail him again. I don't know who all of you are on this list, but if he liked you, I'm sure you're awesome. Thanks for being his buddy and seeing what a great guy he was. Although I don't know most of you, I feel a cyber-kinship with a lot of you, because I know that we all received the same wonderful, kooky e-mails from him.
God bless all of you, and maybe I'll see some of you at the funeral on Thursday.
Yvonne Desjardins
Ryan's big sister
(he called me 'the sista')



Mon, 18 Mar 2002 22:43:57 -0700

Tim Perry


I know I didn't know ry for as long as many of you did, but I am glad that while he was here I actually had a chance to call him my friend. We met through friends and became friends. I'm definitely gonna miss how funny that kid and him used to just decide to drive to st.caterines or go play at the casino even when we had no money at all. He never complained and was always happy. Me and him always had some good talks about the ladies and our gambling strategies much of what he had thought up in pure genious fashion out of nowhere. Me and him were both chicken when it came to calling the macdonalds drive through girl but when it came down to it ryan did the favour..He always would do anything for anyone, and never complain about it. Ryan was the only guy ill ever know who instead of hoping fences, or going around fences... went right through them.



Tue, 19 Mar 2002 02:05:45 –0500

§U§Åñ Y


i met ryan a few years ago, and we dated for a long time. we always remained good friends after everything, and i could always talk to him about anything. he was always the person who wouldnt even think twice about doing something for someone else. he would be the one to throw his lifejacket to someone else in the water. he will be greatly missed
love ya ryan, pcy2k ...Suse~ :)



Tue, 19 Mar 2002 02:13:36 -0500

Alana Morandini


those of you who have known ry for the last year or less may not have any clue who i am...that's because me and ry unfortuntetaly fell out of touch in the last year- not because we wanted to but just because there has been alot happening in our lives.  i'm not going to lie and say that i'm not truly mad at myself for letting that happen because if it was up to me and ry- we wouldn't have missed a second of eachother's lives...i feel like i missed out on the last year and i'm never going to know what his last year was like...what i do know is that going through that list of e-mail addresses, i recognize most of those names and can probably tell u one thing about each of those people- something funny that ry told me about them or ways that they have affected him at some point and to me that says one thing...he truly loved all of you and never took any of us for granted.  i'll continue to miss him forever and hopefully u guys can catch me up on what's been goin on with ry guy for the last year...




19 Mar 2002 2:25 AM

Banchy .


I can say so many funny things about the guy and tell so many stories about the dumbass stuff me and him did over the last 5-6 years ive known him. He's a goof and i'm a goof i guess thats why he was one of my best friends. Everyone just has to remember Big Pimpin Ryan with his blue hood.... it made his car go fast



Tue, 19 Mar 2002 11:55:45 -0500

Shannon Fox


The crazy emails and the "Hey" 2 secs after I came on Icq, that I always expected will be missed. A great guy with a great sense of humour. Ryan was a kind and happy person that made everyone a better person when he was around.  I painted my toenails red




19 Mar 2002 3:53 PM

Jen Marostica


I met Ryan 2 years ago.  he was in my class in first year at Sheridan College.  He was such a funny guy.  we were pretty good friends for the time we spent together.  He used to have a crush on me and he used to call me "the girl that made him run away"  haha, he always made me laugh.  I'll never forget the time we all stayed out till 4am driving around burlington and playing laser tag.  I hadn't seen him around as much lately, but I always ran into him at the kingdom.  It was odd because I was there on friday and I remember wondering where he was.  He was such a great guy.   He will be missed.  My condolensces go out to all of you.

Take care,




3/19/02 4:14 PM

Janice Ferreria


i'am so sorry for what has happened. Ryan was an awesome guy, he was the definition of a real friend, one of my favourites and top 10 list!  he was so easy going, goofy and caring- he really knew how to make me laugh. we would always do impressions of sloth "baby ruth" from the movie Goonies.

we were classmates at sheridan two years ago and since then kept in touched.  i loved ryan!!...i still can't believe it:(

take care ryan’s family, i'am praying for all of you.




3/19/02 6:21 PM

Stede Smeldrake


I don't really know what to say. Ryan Desjardins was, and still is, the the greatest person ever. He never seemed to never let things affect his mood, but was always willing to help others. Ryan and I have been going for ciggarettes for years. Every night between 9-4 oclock. It got to the point that if I didn't see him for a day, i would miss his jokes and his advice. I don't want to believe what has happend. But I would like to convey my feelings of remorse.
In life he helped us, in death. He continued to. Everyone I know has set aside thier quarels to comfort each other. I just want you all to remember what fixed our friendships, and remember that it is not worth fighting over anything. I think we all should try and live as Ryan did.
If this made sence, please take it to heart.
Stede Sheldrake A.K.A ExpendableTyran



3/19/02 11:14 PM

Kris Doyle

I don't even know were to start with this, there are so many things to say.  Ryan was such a good friend to so many, he would be the first to give a helping hand when needed, no matter what the circumstances he never ever over looked down on anyone. (he many have over shadowed some but that was only because of he's overly large melon but thats beside the point).  He could always put a smile on my face, he just had that kind of personality. Me and BH or BC (Big Head and Big Calf)as I called him meet about 7-8 years ago though a mutual friend and our friendship continued to grow over the years. Weather it be a Shaun's house for lunch, or over ICQ,MSN, e-mails, or when he would come up to my place in St.kitts to party and get his money maker in motion...we all have good memories of ryan and had good times with him and that is the way he should be remembered. Some of those good times and memories have helped us become who we are today and we should be grateful for that alone.  This is the way I look at it, people don't live for ever but, memories last a life time. Cherish the times we had with him and the times you have with others cuz you never know.

I miss you so very much Ryan and can't wait for the day when I hear the 'yOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!' and see your smiling face come come around the corner.

See you at the Pearly Gates BH!!
ps. I'm still gonna 'pimp-up' my comp!

Kris Doyle



Tue, 19 Mar 2002 02:32:27 -0500

bee licious


Sometimes it's so scary how short life can be, but it's wonderful how memories can last forever.

I found out about Ry through email tonite...about 20 minutes ago actually, 4 days after.  I saw Ryan on Thursday afternoon at school, we joked around about his silly emails and how things were going with classes.  Who would've thought I'd never get to hear what happened with that "jerk ass" coordinator of his course...he loved to bitch about him.

Ryan, I'll miss you.  I'll miss you coming all the way down here just to hang and B. Second Cup and $7 brownies.  Your car with the wrong coloured hood.  The Fundies Pit with Ian and hackysack...and you with that damn cigarette hanging out of your mouth.  Drawing together all over the brown paper at the bars, insisting that you sucked, while me harping you cos you didn't.

Why is life so short for those who deserve it the most?

To one of the sweetest guys I've ever met, you'll always be remembered in my heart.

Luv you lots,
~~Sabrina   or as you used to say, "waaasssabbby!"



3/20/02 1:27 PM

Jay kucharski

Its not the same coming into my e-mail. Im usually greeting with about 20 messages of porn and jokes from Ryan, and another 20 messages from hotmail yelling at me about my account size. I feel very privellaged that I knew Ryan for the 6 years that I did. So many hours of my life were spent with Ryan, Matt, and John sitting on Matt's porch doing nothing but talking about whatever popped into our heads. We'd laugh as Ryan would say "Shit...I gotta work in an hour" Then the very next night we would repeat the process. He will be missed by all. I will always have a place in my heart for him. I love you buddy.

one last time "Shupp Buddy".........."Later Buddy"



3/20/02 2:53 PM

Matt McEwen

wow ... just wish i could wake up and ryan would still be here and everything would be back to how it should be.

i've known ryan my entire life ... he used to have the best g.i. joes .. and the first time i saw internet porn was at his house .. cindy crawford .. ok so more of erotica than porn but whatever.. and then he carried that on with the gi-normous amounts of porn he would send ... always looked forward to that ... the numerous games of hide-and-go, which is hide and go seek for older grade school kids ... but cooler and at night ... the snowballs that were iceballs (note: iceballs hurt and should never be used) ... so much fun ... i missed out on a couple years there with ryan but made up for them ten fold with late nights out on my porch, and the end of the street and tim hortons just shootin the shit and venting ... and ryan was always there with a big fat ear on his big fat wonderful head to listen ... always ... sure he'd take a while to get here .. or fall asleep ... and sometimes interrupt me when i was whining about something ... but i was guilty of all the same offences.. i saw him less since i moved away but loved him no less ... i always looked forward to having one last smoke with him ... always

days just wont end the same .. they wont end how they should
but i love ya ryan and im gonna keep my head up cuz i know you wouldnt want me to be sad forever

hope ure not causin a ruckus up there ya "damn punk kid" ;)

preppy kid (aka matt)

love ya man
forever and always



3/21/02 12:12 AM

ArF Doggy Dog

Hello boys and girls,
For those of you that can make it this coming Friday we will be going to Kingdom to celebrate the life of Ryan , one of the greatest  friends we've had.  I know this is what Ryan would have wanted so we're gonna go out , drink some beers (or hard liqour mmmm) and remember someone who touched us as deeply as Ryan did.
If everyone could just pass the word along we really want as many people as possible to come out.  We should all the be there around 11pm or so.  Hope to see everyone there!


If I become a rock star you'll still be one of our roadies!
RIP good friend , one day we shall meet again ... and go for some late night coffee of course hehe
I'll always remember you , take care buddy
you'll always have a place in all our hearts.  Love you always bro



3/21/02 3:35 PM

Kris Doyle

Hey all, I know there is an e-mail going around about going out to the Kingdom tomorrow, but there is a bunch of us going out tonight to Philthy's around 10 or so, all of us going would like to see as many of Ryan's friends there as possible for a little celebration of Ryan's life, Im sure would would have liked us to get to know each other.

p.s. the service was very nice



3/22/02 10:36 AM

Zander Gut

Ryan is in my class at Sheridan College.  I know I've only known him since September but him and I were buds since the first day.  I know that he respected everyone in our class and everyone respected him back.  Why do all the nice people have to die?? is what I ask.  I still find it hard to talk about this because I am still in great shock.  I guess reality wont kick in until Monday when I sit in class and he's not sitting there beside me.  My condolences go out to everyone who knew him especially his family and close friends.  We will miss you ol buddy.




3/23/02 12:22 PM


No one's death has ever affected me the way Ryan's has, not even any of my own family members.  I'm not the only who feels this way, but there's so many of us who have had such a change in perspective of life in the past week.  The emails have been very comforting coming from everyone, and everyone has been so supportive of each other ! It's absolutely amazing how everyone has come together and how close everyone has been for the past couple days.  Last night I kind of lost it at Kingdom and I took off a just cried in a corner , only be comforted by one of Ryan's friends I had only met a couple times.  We for an hour about what a great guy he was!  Right after that I turned around and I saw 2 of my friends who haven't talked in a long time laughing , having a beer.  It was amazing seeing those to talk again.  5 minutes after that I walked to another part of the club and I saw 2 of my friends who are brothers talking as well!  These guys haven't talked to each other or even looked at each in quite sometime now!  It was very comforting to see those brothers talking having a beer together hugging each other.  There were even more things like that , that happened last night.  Such a constant change of a million emotions running through me at all times , well most of us must feel like that now.

That website definitely is going to be a nice central place for everyone to go and read and be comforted.  =)



3/23/02 1:07 PM



[See the drawing at the top of the page]

I don't think I need to say too much.  I always promised to draw him a picture, but everytime he asked me I gave him the usual, "wait till I'm done school and it'll be 10 times as good."  Well, I figured now was a good time as any.  This is the way I'll always remember Ry, always smiling, open arms and never in a bad mood.  Last time I saw him was Tuesday at school in the caf.  Heh, he was bitching about one of his teachers being an idiot...

I hope you all like it.



3/24/02 1:40 AM

Karrie Dylnicks


At the beginning of the semester, I had the hugest crush on Ryan, and he knew it and would sweet talk me on icq, because he was too shy to talk to me in person.  He knew of my love for Shakespeare, and so would talk to me in olden english. "tis true , remarks by you only better the fact that we are to soon reunite as one again .. our love is strong .... nothing shall part our ways" quote from Ryan from one of our talks.  Though we never ended up dating, we stayed buds, staying up until 5am most night talking on icq.  I remember the first few weeks of school, I talked him into shaving off his beard, and talking him into bleeching his hair.  Though the last month or so in school we didn't talk as much, about a week ago I still managed to tell him he was the best dressed guy in the class.  I guess he really liked that, because another guy in our class mentioned that Ryan told him about it, yet didn't know who.  Ryan and I argued once in awhile, because he hated being called a word I took from a childs song.  He always got so mad, and we would argue for a few minutes, but would always appolgise within a few minutes.  Being one of four females in our class, it was hard making friends, but Ryan always made me feel welcome.  Its hard going to class and seeing an empty chair where he used to sit.  Its hard for all of our class, because Ryan would talk to everyone, so everyone has a nice story and memory to tell about him.
Though I have only known Ryan since september, he has effected my life in many ways.  He was such a romantic, and was always wondering why he couldn't be tougher.  Christmas eve he was so excited about giving his mom a grad photo of himself.  He would talk about it for weeks.  I really miss him.  I wish I could tell you how Ryan had changed my life.  He was such a good person.  The funeral was hard....while it was ending, his mom walked passed me and touched my arm.  She has never met me before, and had probably never heard my name before, but when she touched my arm, she made me feel so much comfort.  The realization that Ryan will never again join in our class, or be awake on icq to talk to me late at night, is hard to get into my mind.  Most of our class is in great shock and like most, having trouble dealing.
I was wondering if you had a photo of Ryan you could send me.  The only time I see him is when I close my eyes.  I miss him a lot.  Im so sorry.
Karrie Dylnicki



March 23, 2002 15:14

Kelly Bentley


i met ryan... well to be honest, i don't remember when and i don't remember under what circumstances.. but somehow i met ryan =) we never really hung out.. we were more of icq buddies.. but i'd end up running into him somewhere, like at the mall or at mikes food basics, where he was some weird guy staring at me (sometimes i didn't have my glasses on so i couldn't actually tell it was him).. our relationship was based on kinkiness and rowdiness.. our nicknames for each other were rowdy ryan and kinky kelly... and at one time we both figured that if we were ever single at the same time we'd probably end up getting together.. but it didn't happen.. susan, you're a very lucky girl =) my fondest memory of ryan would have to be the times when he wouldn't know what clothes to wear out.. he'd draw me pictures in paint of himself in different outfits and would send them over the computer and make me choose what he was going to wear.. it was cute, to say the least. ryan was always a great friend and i'll miss him very much. i loved him more than i cared to admit and he will always have a big place in my heart.

forever and always,

kinky one

ps: incubus- i wish you were here



March 24, 2002 13:36

Aunt Mad


It is so comforting to read what you all write about Ryan. He was very special to all of us for much the same reasons that you write about. He always had time to talk to me when we met on the computer. Our distance of two hours were never to far for us to talk. I will miss him asking when I am stopping by for supper ( "we haven't had pasta for awhile" :)) ) . I know an inside joke but one I will miss hearing from him. He has been a joy to have as a nephew and in our time of loss we share the same insight that he is remembered for the joy, the laughter and the never changing attitude that anyone Ryan talked to was made to feel important. For that my dear Ryan I am proud to be called your Aunt.......and so much more but that is all I can write right now. Your are loved and missed my dear.
Aunt Mad



March 24, 2002 17:45

Cuz Amanda


I have known Ryan all my life...well he is my cousin! He has always been the most fun loving guy and always said the right things are the right times..He always turned my frown upsidedown.  When I was younger he would always babysit me and we would have the best times together.  He is the one that taught me how to draw.  Ryan would always watch the Disney movies with me even though he was older and I knew he really wasn't that interested.  He is my oldest cousin.  I always looked up to him and his brother.  It was always "Ryan and Sean".  It upset my dearly when I found out that he wouldn't be around anymore.  We have a lot of great memories.  I can't think of one bad thing.  Our family would always get together christmas eve, which is really the only time I saw him, and I would always look forward to seeing him.  He is my crazy cousin and I love him very much.  He was one I could ralate to.  It is so great to see all his friends coming together it has really helped me out this past week.  Ryan will remain in my heart always and forever.  I miss him sooooo much.  My prayer are with you Ryan and always will be.  It was great having a cousin as goofy as you we had some great times.  I will miss everything about Ryan.  His smile would light up an entire room, and he was always so easy to pick on which was the most fun because he could take it.  I know ryan had my back no matter what.  He was someone I could trust and relate to.  He was a great cousin and an awesome friend.  There will always be a HUGE place in my heart for him!!!!


Love you always and always



PS.  The Silver rose will live on forever!

 I MISS U!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



March 25, 2002 09:42

Jay Kucharski


Lyrics for us to live by


See the pain in my eyes, see the scars deep inside. My God, Im down in this
hole again.With the laughter I smile With the tears that I cry. Keep going
down this road called life.

-Machine Head

Ryan has touched us all in way that is very hard to explain in words. He
will be missed by us all.

I will Love and Remember you always.

Jay Kucharski



March 25, 2002 12:59

Ryan Salter


The first time I saw Ryan was in highschool, and all I could think about was how the hell he could hold that pencil like a gimp and still draw kickass art. Needless to say we became friends somehow. I have to believe it was mostly his doing, since I was never an outgoing person. Man did he make highschool just fly by... always with a huge smile and some retarded joke to make you laugh. We still kept in touch after highschool, and I always saw him out at the bars. Hell, we even went to the same college. Its funny, the last time we talked he was trying to convice me to bring back the monster goat... Man, if only i could turn back time and say something more profound to him. That will be my greatest regret and sorrow. You will be missed my friend.


PS. Who knows, the goat may come back soon, bleached blonde as per the advice of one of my good friends.


Ryan Salter (aka Isotope)



March 25, 2002 16:25

Blair Halchuk


I don't know where to begin.  I'm sure many of you on here have little or no idea who I am.  I was an older friend of Ryan's from back in our elementary school days.  I grew up just around the corner from him and when we were young many a day after school was spent at one of our houses toiling away our youth in front of a Nintendo.  I remember Ryan is the one who finally showed me the secret to beating The Legend Of Zelda for nintendo.  Of course like a fool I'd always forget how to do it and call him up again, "hey Ryan you busy?  Wanna come show me how to beat Zelda?"  What was it with his G.I. Joe's too?  Were mine just that bad or were his just a whole lot better?  I will never forget the silly silly way you used to hold your pen either and the number of teachers who would try and change you.  You were never a messy writter at all, hell you probably could have written with your toes and looked better then my cursive but the teachers still thought to tell you you were wrong but you didn't listen and look at some of the works of art you produced.  Sadly in the years gone by since high school we sort of drifted apart and didn't see each other as much but it would always be a pleasant surprise to be navigating the jungle that is the dance floor at Kingdom and bump right into you.  "What are you doing here?"  "What am I doing here what are you doing here?"  That fun loving Ryan was always a welcome face to run into on a friday night that I would otherwise forget in a blur the next morning.  Ryan it's hard that you're gone and will never be easy to accept but alot of people's lives are the better for having met such a great friend like you.


Blair Halchuk



March 25, 2002 13:53

Randy Telo


apparently my flatulence sounds like ethiopian children , as ryan pinpointed,  i will never forget that. He would try to match it, he would sometimes succeed, and then we would laugh  for about 3 min straight, both of us turrning red with tears commin out of our eyes. The last time tears cam out of my eyes with you around wasn't what i was looking for, it wasn't something any of us were looking for. You will be missed!, there's no doubt about that



peace out bro





3/24/02 4:20 PM

Shane Patzalek


Hello all,
I'm Ryan's uncle Shane (the guy in the wheelchair). It is so nice to see all the kind thoughts and memories you all have of him. I will add them to the many fond memories I have of my nephew. Remember, he's with us all, no doubt looking down from the heavens.
Thank you all and be happy for Ryan.



3/24/02 11:48 AM

Kevin Desjardins


My Brother, My Friend


Hello Everyone,
Extreme thanks to all Ry Guy's friends for their comforting words and support. Definitely the darkest hour of our lives but at the same time the greatest realization in our lives being that someone so special was amongst us and touched so many of us so deeply. He treated his brothers like his buddies and his buddies like brothers. He showed genuine respect for everyone he knew. He had a lot of character and so many likeable qualities that we all admired and we wanted to hang out with him. He was an expert at balancing his time for his friends and family. Even if you didn't see him all the time he'd send you stuff and be kept in your thoughts. No matter what he sent whether it be the jokes (always excellent), the porn (always interesting), or just dropping a line (always sincere), you would feel complimented by him being so considerate. Ryan was so down to earth and easy to talk to it was no problem yakking about all our everyday troubles and woes. Ry always put his friend's concerns first and his own last. He could make light of someone and just as easily make light of himself as well. Well known for the blue hooded ("death-mobile" as he called it) I'm sure  Ryan's driving skills were only enhanced by having to drive it in the sorry condition it was in. But we all know he made the best of it and it became a trade mark for him. All these tributes that have been set up for him really hit home for us. Knowing he will never be forgotten in your hearts says his very premature passing was not in vain. I know it is still so hard to believe he is gone, for you as well as his immediate family. We will all miss his steady flow of e-mails, his bright, happy-go-lucky aura, and his cheerful everyday attitude. We will all have in common the bond of knowing Ryan's true spirit will be in our hearts forever. It gives me strength to hear what a great guy he was and how by just from being his friend everyone's lives are all the more richer. Ry Guy never got to fulfill all his dreams and wishes but I'm sure that is what he would want for all of you. I take comfort in knowing that when my number is up there will be my little brother there to greet me at the big pearly gates.....If they let me in....and I hope he puts a good word in for me cause I may need it...

Be Good,  Doods & Doodettes.
With a heavy heart I say thank-you so much
Kevin Desjardins,(wife Janet, daughters Amber & Katrina)



3/24/02 8:42 PM

Kyle Sloan


I don't know if this is a good idea or not, but I was wondering if people would like to share favourite pictures of Ryan.  I am sure many people have awesome pictures of him at his finest..haha.

anyways, it is just an idea.

ryan, I am gonna miss you bud.  Hopefully i will see you agian someday.




3/25/02 1:58 PM

Kris Doyle


To My Friend Ryan


If you should die
before me, ask if you
could bring a friend.
-- Stone Temple Pilots

If you live to be a hundred,
I want to live to be
a hundred minus one day,
so I never have to live
without you.
-- Winnie the Pooh

True friendship is
like sound health;
the value of it is
seldom known
until it is lost.
-- Charles Caleb Colton

A real friend
is one who walks in
when the rest
of the world walks out.

walk in front of me,
I may not follow.
Don't walk behind me,
I may not lead.
Walk beside me and
be my friend.
-- Albert Camus

Strangers are
just friends waiting to
Friends are the Bacon
Bits in the Salad
Bowl of Life.

Friendship is one mind
in two bodies.
-- Mencius

Friends are God's way of taking care of us.

I'll lean on you and
you lean on me and
we'll be okay
-- Dave Matthews

If all my friends were
to jump off a bridge,
I wouldn't jump with them,
I'd be at the bottom to
catch them.

Everyone hears
what you say.
Friends listen to
what you say.
Best friends
listen to what you don't

We all take different
paths in life,
but no matter where we go,
we take a little of each
other everywhere.;
-- Tim McGraw

My father always used
to say that when you die,
if you've got five real friends,
then you've had a great life.;
-- Lee Iacocca

Hold a true friend with both your hands.;
-- Nigerian Proverb

A friend is someone who knows
the song in your heart
and can sing it back to you
when you have forgotten
the words.;
-- Unknown



Burlington Post article, Mar 27, 2002


Notre Dame grad's death stuns friends

Family says it's grateful for outpouring of support from former classmates


by Robb Swybrous


Ken and Lorrainne Desjardins knew their son, Ryan, was a well-liked person but they were still overwhelmed to see hundreds of people who took time out of their lives to say good-bye last week at his visitation and funeral services.


"So many people came to the funeral home," Ken said. "I was very, very proud of my son. He was a loving type; everybody cared about him and he cared about everybody."


The 22-year-old Notre Dame Secondary School graduate and former Post carrier died March 16 after collapsing near the corner of Brant Street and Plains Road. Ryan was en route to a night club with a few of his friends when he became ill and was rushed to Joseph Brant Memorial Hospital where he later died.


Ryan's dad said a myriad of medical tests, including a toxicology screen, have yet to determine exactly what caused his son's heart to stop beating. It might take as long as 6-8 weeks before they know for sure, he added. His dad said Ryan didn't have an existing heart condition, and tests so far have ruled out a brain aneurysm. Initial reports that the death might be drug-related are wrong, said Ken.


Halton police agree, and say they have no reason to treat the death as suspicious.


Ryan was born in Oakville but moved to Burlington when he was about six months old. He attended Canadian Martyrs before graduating from Notre Dame and enrolling at Sheridan College to study art. Desjardins was hoping to get into the college's highly-competitive animation program but when that didn't work out, he switched to computer programming.


"He had a computer since he was 12 and he adapted very well to it," Ken said. "They loved him at the college because he was very serious about what he was doing and seemed to be a bit of a leader to the students there. They were all devastated when they found out."


In addition to his parents, Ryan is survived by four siblings including a sister, Yvonne, 39, and brothers, Kevin, 38, Michael, 33, and Sean, 21. It was with Sean that Ryan shared a Burlington Post paper route with when they were in their teen-aged years. "They were 18 months apart so they were very close," Ken said of the brothers who also played house- league baseball together.


Ryan's dad added he and his wife are spending the next few weeks away from work to cope with their loss and handle some necessary administrative tasks.


After that they're hoping to move on with their lives, and hoping some of the friends Ryan is leaving behind will help them remember their son. "We've told all his friends you must come around and see us because we want to know how they are doing," Ken said. "There were a great support for us, we want to return that to them. They're really devastated by the whole thing."



March 29, 2002 07:33

Teresa Nauta


Well, I am sure that almost all of you do not know me, and yet as I read down this list of wonderful emails, I realize that Ryan meant just as much to everyone as he did to me.  My name is Teresa and I was one of Ryan's boss' at Mark's Work Wearhouse.  I met Ryan not long before I came over to Burlington from the Hamilton store.  Us being close in age (I'm three years older), we found a common ground, and the more I got to know him, the more I realized what a special guy he was.  Ryan made my move from one store to the other easier than I could've imagined.  From the first moment I set foot inside the store, he made me feel at welcome and always did what he could to help- heck, he would even get me sprinkles for my Macdonald's sundae.  Ryan was always late and would call me every Saturday to ask me if he started at 10:30am or 11am- as I am sure you can imagine this became a long standing joke.  One time he was so late getting ready that he wore two TOTALLY different shoes- one was a running type shoe and one was a casual oxford.   I will be forever grateful to him for how he had touched my life in such a positive way- always smiling, and always willing to talk- even when I am know we should've been working.  Ryan was my co-worker but more importantly my friend, and I miss him very much. Each night that I am out and about, I look to the first biggest and brightest star in the sky and I know that that star is "my buddy Ryan"

I miss ya bud, love you always, Teresa  (aka-boss, buddy, chief, and grimace)



March 29, 2002 16:35

Amber Dermott


Hi Ry guy!!

He was always the best at everything.  Expectially drawing.  He gave me a lot of confidence,  love and affection.
Katrina and I  were his only nieces and he always cared for us.  To bad Katrina did not really know who he was.
But I will have lots of stories to tell her about  Uncle Ryan.  Thanks to Yvonne  we all  got together at her wedding on Feb. 16,   which  was a month before Ryan's death.   I loved him so much.  I will miss him.




March 29, 2002 23:13

Louisa O'keane


I was in school with Ryan since the first grade.  He was the one that the girls always liked.  In grade three I pinned him against a locker and kissed him, and when I ran into him again this summer he remembered that and I couldn't believe it.  The other day I found an old school workbook from grade four and it had some his drawings on it, he use to make up little characters and draw them on anything and everything.  I feel privledged to have known you  so long. You'll always be in my heart Ryan.





March 30, 2002 23:48

Erica Swartz


Most of you don't know me... I worked with Ryan at Mark's Work Wearhouse for the past year and a half.  We always used to have so much fun closing at the old #64!  I remember one night, Ryan and I were on oppsoite ends of the store folding and the "let me be your hero" song had just ended and Ryan said  "hey Erica, will you let me be your hero?" ....I remember we kinda laughed a little after that. Ryan was my hero! Every Saturday when I pulled into work I would look for Ryan's blue hooded car to see if he was working that day. When Ryan would come into work I would tease him and ask him how many girls he'd picked up on the weekend or how many numbers he got!  He was the greatest to work with, he never really let anything bother him, he never had a bad word to say about anyone, he could strike up a huge conversation with just about anyone who came into the store and he was always smiling!  I feel blessed to have known Ryan and have him be a part of my life for a short time. My prayers go out to Ryan's family and friends.  The memories of Ryan will always be in my heart.  #64 will never be the same without you Ry!

Love ya bud!




March 31, 2002 19:08

Cousin Faris


Ryan didn't feel like a cousin to me, more like a brother. He taught me some history on music. We always kidded about computer 'cause my mom  has a Mac. He taught me how to draw. I'll miss seeing him.


Cousin Faris (from London)



April 4, 2002 13:58

Brad D'Silva


I meet Ryan in September 2001 at Sheridan College, but even though it had only been a few months that I knew Ryan, we became pretty close. He was the kind of person that you knew that you could trust and talk to about anything. He was one of the most kind and caring people that I have ever come into contact with. We would talk just about everyday either in class, on icq or over the phone. Ryan has helped me through a few major problems in my life. He was always very supportive and seemed to know just what to say to make you feel better. 


I had spoken to Ryan for a few moments Wednesday March 13th about my wife who was pregnant with our son and in the hospital with toxemia. Ryan was helping me keep it together and thanks to him it was a lot easer to get through it. On Friday March 15th the doctors induced labor and my son was born. Which Was the greatest day of my life.  I was so excited to tell Ryan about my son, so I called him on Monday to let him know that everything went okay. That is when I found out what had happened. Quickly I went for great joy to overwhelming sadness. the loss of Ryan is truly a tragedy, he was always smiles and always made you feel important. He would talk about his family and how much they all meant to him. He is a truly great friend, I refuse to use past tense because I will always keep found memorys of Ryan and he will always be a great friend in my heart.


I deapest regret is that I never truly got to thank Ryan for all of his support.


I hope to see you again my friend


Brad D'Silva ---Ugly_Troll



April 7, 2002 23:10

Aneta grr


I'll never forget seeing Ryan for the first time at kingdom and thinking, damn that boy's hot! we became instant icq buds and i always looked forward to a "hey coooookie" message popup the instant i came on. i always had terrible timing and interrupted him doing homework but he always took the time to talk to me about whatever. he was a big flirt with a big heart and an awesome sense of humour. i still sit on icq waiting for him to go online, knowing that he wont. everytime im outside and i see the sun i think of him, saying how awesome the last few days were when i saw him last. seeing sunshine always made me smile before but now i have more reason to love it.

youll always have a place in my heart



April 8, 2002 15:11

Rohan Jayasekera


I didn’t get to know Ryan very well because his life was cut so short, but well enough to realize what an amazing guy he was.  As the new husband of his sister Yvonne I was his newest family member, and I enjoyed my (unfortunately few) chats with him.  With my background in the computer/new-media industry we talked about the educational/career choices he had to make and I was happy to give him the perspective of someone who’s been there.  I think he appreciated that  – we “spoke a different language” as his mother put it.


I’m very thankful that Yvonne and I got married at the time we did, less than four weeks before his passing.  Among other things, the wedding brought together Ryan and many other family members who otherwise might not have seen each other for a while, and it was a happy occasion for everyone.



April 27, 2002 19:09

danyel mclachlan


I only met ryan less then a year ago, but I still felt like we were really good friends. 

He would always end up showing up at Matt's at like, 2 in the morning, and we would sit on the front porch and laugh and talk...and he would always be on icq for late night conversation.  He used to let me use his webcam all the time cause he knew I loved it.

He was just so nice & considerate & funny & amazing, & I really miss him.  I miss his jokes, and crazy stories, and going out for cider with him, and seeing him at kingdom...

I feel so lucky that I got the chance for him to be a part of my life.

I remember when I first met him I thought he was so cool because he liked all the music I liked, was so nice and hilarious, and I loved his car.

I loved how he never got upset or angry, and always knew how to handle a situation.

I still miss him everyday, but I'm so glad my life was touched by his.


i miss you baby. xox.




April 28, 2002


Read Ryan’s “Personal Soft Skills Plan” from Sheridan College, posted here by permission of his parents.  Note that the page will take a long time to load -- sorry.



May 3, 2002 15:01

Amanda Dillon


I have known Ryan since kindergarden.  I continued to stay friends with him through highschool.  When I heard about Ryans death I was in complete shock.  I started to remember things about Ryan that I hadn't thought about in years.  I started thinking about we used to laugh that we went out in grade three.  That he asked me to grade eight grad but I went with someone else.  I remembered how he wrote in my yearbook without fail, every year.  I had seen Ryan once after highschool, just before last Christmas.  Ryan has been in my thoughts every day.  At his funneral, it was obvious how many peoples live Ryan effected.  My heart goes out to all his friends and family. 

Amanda Dillon



June 29, 2002 14:45

Cuz Amanda




Ryan I really miss you like crazy still! It is still hard for me....even after a few months! I still can't believe you are really gone! Everytime a STP song comes on I am reminded of you!! Your pics are all over my room in memory!! I can now think of you and not be as sad as before, but smile at all the funny things we would do! I love you very much! Although it is still hard all I have to do is remember all the memories we have/had together, they always cheer me up! You are the best man!! Miss you so much!


Love you cuz





August 13, 2002 02:25

Kelly Bentley


Just something interesting that I wanted to share:

August 4th I was sitting at the end of my friend's dock and I was in a really bad mood because I was fighting with my boyfriend. Any time that I used to have those kinds of problems I would rant and rave to Ryan and he would always listen and try to make me laugh and feel better (he always succeded). I was staring at the stars and I said to myself, "I really wish you were here Ryan, to make me feel better." Right after I said that, I saw a shooting star. He's watching over me -- over all of us. Although he isn't here, I know he still finds a way to touch us all. I'll never stop loving you Ryan. Thank you. 

*Kinky One*



September 16, 2002



Many of the messages in the Ryan room are wonderful representations of our son Ryan. We look at them frequently and it makes us feel soooo good to know  that Ryan is still in the hearts of  all his friends and family. Today is the 6 month Anniversary of Ryan’s passing...I can't believe it has gone by that quickly. It only seems a few weeks ago.....I as his mother I miss him beyond what words  can ever be said to anyone. There is hardly a minute that doesn't go by, that his spirit enters into my thoughts. I love all my children equally and would feel the same way about each of them if they had been taken by God. Ryan holds a special place in my heart now .   Ryan brought us all joy, love and friendship that is rarely found in such a young man. We were blessed to have him for the short time that God gave him to us. He was and still remains a wonderful gift that we will cherish forever. As it says on the marker at the cemetery..."Though the voice is quiet, tha spirit echoes still  "  


There have been many changes in our lives to date. We are new grandparents to a grandson Korey (son of Ryan's brother Michael and sister-in-law Christine). Ryan's sister Yvonne and her husband Rohan who set up this web site have bought a house in Toronto that they are excited about. Kristen Stevens a neighbour of ours, and a young lady Ryan and Sean grew up with since birth, married in June....Her mom and dad moved in August. People at my work have left unexpectedly......Too many changes to cope with all at once. Susan...A good friend of Ryan's and her parents organized a collection between themselves and Mark's Work Warehouse to the Rotary club, to plant a tree in Central Park with a plaque commemorating Ryan. I will let you Know where it is as soon as they tell us.


I'm sorry to say that we still have no facts from the coroner as to the cause of Ryan's death. It won't bring him back but it would be nice to know what happened. It has taken me 6 months to even think of what to say in The Ryan Room.....but I finally made an entry.


To all Ryan's friend's A BIG THANK YOU for being around for us..It is nice to know you care, but it is even better to see you all progress in your lives. All you young people keep us young at heart and Keep Ryan's memory alive within your lives. Ryan will remain with all forever and smile down on us all even at your concerts and parties...He always loved his many friends

  Pictures to follow if I can scan then O.K.


Love Mom (alias jugsmom )



September 28, 2002 15:39

Cuz Amanda


Hello everyone!! I just wanted to share a monologue I had to do in drama class.  I wrote this in April just after Ryan's passing! I hope everyone enjoys it!


The Birthday Tragedy


It’s my birthday my bbbirthday.  Wahoo, finally 16. YES!  Watch out roads here I come.  What’s that? The phone, at quarter to seven in the morning? I wonder who that could be! OH NO why is my mom screaming?  Oh my goodness, it can’t be.  He was only 22 how could this happen.  Ryan is my favourite cousin he can’t be gone.  I love him so much, how did he die?  He collapsed, what? Why? You don’t know? How can you not know people don’t just die, especially people like him.  This can’t be happening.  There have been way too many tragedies in my life this year.  This is different though, this time it happened to me, he was my cousin.  I am going to miss him so much.  Talking to him everyday about stupid little things always cheered me up.  He knew everything about me.  He always knew how to keep a secret.  This is unbelievable how can I go on, knowing he won’t be there anymore.  I mean I know he will always be there in my heart but that just isn’t enough.  It’s hard for me to accept that he is in a better place, when in my heart the best place for him was right here!  I can’t imagine how much this is hurting and what Aunt Lorraine and Uncle Ken are going through…and how about Sean. Kevin Mike and Yvonne, how are they going to deal with Ryan not being there as a brother.  I can’t handle this.  It feels like I am going to have a break down.  People this young aren’t supposed to die.  I can’t understand why God would do this.  I don’t think I ever will.  No one can ever replace a person that great.  He was loved by so many and had so many friends.  It’s hard to imagine him with any enemies.  He could light up a room with his smile.  Just one look from him lets you know everything is going to be okay.  Now nothing is okay.  I didn’t only lose a cousin I lost a big brother.  It seems like no one understands that, no one understands how close we really were.  We were so much alike, he was my crazy cousin that most related to me and now he is gone.  He always told me about his girlfriends and what it was like in college.  I always looked up to him.  We have always been close.  He was the best babysitter ever.  Man am I ever going to miss how he would teach me how to draw all of his weird characters, now who will do that?  He was such a loveable guy, loved and lived life to the fullest.  What? You want me to go over to his house? No way how can I do that knowing he won’t be there.  I can’t face his family right now.  If I am in this much pain, well multiply that by 1000 and you have his family’s distress.  I know I am going to have to see them sometime but not right now.  It’s too hard.  Besides I need to be alone.  This was supposed to be the best birthday, how can I be happy when something this terrible just happened.  NOTHING can cheer me up right now. Nothing.  Geees I can’t help thinking why this happened.  How could it?  What did he do to deserve his life to be cut short?  I know it must have been his time but why?  I wish I could have seen him one last time before he died.  I would have told him how much I really do care for him and how much I appreciate everything he has done for me.  Jughead, I love you and miss you.  You will be in my heart always and always.



October 10, 2002

Kevin Desjardins


His Message


Thoughts of you,

I am reminded each day.

Your presence of spirit,

Gently passes my way.

Reminiscing the times,

As always were good,

Knowing that nothing,

Was misunderstood.


I see you in faces,

Of those of your age.

And wondered if we,

Had the power to change,

The things such in life,

That can be so unfair.

To deny us our loved ones,

Is so much to bear.


For now our hearts challenged,

To stay strong and to trust.

Keeping in mind,

 Your message for us.

Although you are silent,

Your wish echoes loud.

“Live life to the fullest”


We’ll all do you proud.


Kevin Desjardins



October 15, 2002 00:14

Sabrina, “supergrassgirl”


I don't really know where to begin with this...

I just finished up some homework.  I've been spending a lot of time at school lately, caught up in a mad rush of work that never seems to end.... Arriving there at 7am and not leaving until at least 2am, day in and day out.  With a lot of time by myself to think, I get frustrated, and upset, and sometimes question why I'm still there giving so much effort...there's always going to be someone out there better.

Then I stop and think how he nudged me to keep going, and how he made me feel that what I was doing *was* good and worth something, and how
much he'd kill to be in my position.... And as awful as I feel, that dark part inside of me lightens up again..."just think of what Ryan would say" I'd repeat to myself.  Might sound strange, but it really helps.

Time is going by so quickly, and it really honestly does feel like it only happened yesterday.  I'll head into the cafeteria everyday and look over to the spot we last spoke...I'll pass by the A Wing and look out to the spot that we used to play hack with Ian late at night, and I'll smile.  I smile because the times we spent together were grand...completely carefree and wonderful.  Once in a while I'll feel down, because I know there won't be other days like that...but I suppose there's not much one can do but to keep strong and be grateful to even have memories as such to think back upon.

This past year has been quite difficult.  A little over a month ago, I had another friend pass away - a few years younger than Ryan, and it was hard as well.  Different circumstances, same end result.  I've never taken any friends for granted, and don't plan on starting either...but these situations have just really reinforced the fact that life is much too short for petty arguments or differences.  It's like that old saying, "It's better to regret something you've done, than something you never did" If you have something to tell somebody else, good or bad, just do it.  Let them know... tomorrow may never come for them.

I miss Ryan like hell, and originally just wanted to come here to drop a happy birthday note...but, things change I suppose.
Either way, Happy Birthday Ry. I know you'll be partying it up and having a great time wherever you are.  You deserve it.

Luv you always,

"It's too late to talk to you, and it's too soon to say goodbye.  Listen wherever you may be, you still live inside my mind.  Something tells me that you are free again, in a place that feels like home.  It's never easy to understand why memories hold our hand...but people let go."



October 15, 2002 11:07

Yvonne Desjardins


Happy 23rd Birthday to my dear brother Ryan

It makes me so sad to think that Ryan would have been 23 years old today.  He was so young, so vibrant, so warm and so loved.  His death is such a shame and such a tragedy.  I think of him often, especially when I see kids his age downtown (which is often), and when a situation triggers a memory of him.  Sometimes the loss hits me and I just shudder, or I see his picture and I shake my head in disbelief.   I miss his smile, his jokes, his kindness, his charisma, his generousity of spirit and his playful essence.  Not knowing Ryan's cause of death leaves me without closure, but at the same time no explanation will bring him back.

For those who think "it won't happen in their family," it did in ours, and it was the last thing we ever expected!  I still can't believe that my sweet, funny, cheerful, talented brother is in a cemetery, instead of with us this year, or any year in the future.  It is such a sad thought, yet we must plod on and try to heal our broken hearts.

When something like this happens, the only silver lining is that people get closer.  The outpouring of love and support from Ryan's friends and relatives was tremendous, and a real testament to how cherished Ryan really was by so many.  Our family has also grown closer through our grief.

At the risk of sounding like Barney...hug your kid today.  Or your Dad, or your sister or your best friend.  Ryan showed me how truly short life can be, and you never know when your number will come up.  It is so easy to take loved ones for granted when you forget how fragile life can be.

My dearest wish for Ryan's birthday this year is that he knows how loved and missed he is today, and how loved and treasured he always was and always will be.

I miss you SO much Ryan.  I hope you can feel our love like never before today.

With all my heart,
your sister, friend and fan,



October 22, 2002 01:50

Brad D'Silva




Well it's been a long time Since I have written anything about Ryan, but I think of him every day that goes by. Every day that someone asks me when my sons birthday is. I think of Ryan because my son was born March 15th 2002. Ryan, what can I say... I miss you bro but I have a feeling your enjoying yourself up in heaven..

Take care.. and talk to you in my prayers.


Brad D'Silva



November 4, 2002 18:08

Kirby ----------


Closer than Further Away


I feel estranged and the sky is grey.

I'm selfish, irrelevant and it looks like rain.

I'm silent as I vent with emotions that were spent,

trying to find the pain.

As I watch you sleep were the flowers lay


I can still feel you; like nothing has changed.

I am still confused how you’re close than far away

I can still hear you; goodbyes were the same

on Matty's porch where now your so close than far away.


Moments come of clarity to my head that must have been

absent, vacant, long gone faded, when I heard that you never would

pick me up again we'd smoke until nights end.

All emotion hits the ground with a lack of sound and I wonder now


Are you an angel somewhere looking down on me?


I can still feel you; like nothing has changed.

I am still confused how you’re close than far away

I can still hear you; goodbyes were always the same

on Matty's porch where now your so close than far away.


This is frustrating to me. As selfish as it may seem.

I'll always wonder what you look like in daylight.

You left your dreams on the porch somewhere.

All emotion hits the ground, with a lack of sound and I wonder now


Are you an angel somewhere looking down on me?


I can still feel you; like nothing has changed.

I am still confused how you’re close than far away

I can still hear you; goodbyes were the same

on Matty's porch where now your so close than far away.



February 12, 2003 23:52

Wynn O’Keane


My name is Mrs. O'Keane, my daughter Louisa went to school with Ryan.  I know that it is almost a year since Ryan passed away.  I just want to say that you are still in our thoughts and that we still think of Ryan often.  Everytime I pass your street I think about you and how devastating your loss is.  I know that I cannot feel your pain, but I want you to know that I care.


Remembering Ryan


Mrs. Winifred O'Keane



March 13, 2003 22:55



I can’t believe it’s been a year already.  As always you are in my thoughts and prayers.

I will never forget you.  God bless you and rest in peace sweet soul.




March 14, 2003 03:26

Brad D'Silva


I was sitting here thinking that A year ago today was the last time I spoke to Ryan and I broke into tears, With a year gone by I thought this may have been a little more easy to post. Boy was I wrong.... Ryan I miss you bro, I often think back on our conversations... One really stands out.... It was after we stoped by Sheridan Pub and I drove you home...what was supposed to be a smoke  turned into us standing out front of your house till like 4 am in the freezing cold just talking away... I think your brother thought we were nuts when he pulled up and saw us out thier..Man I miss just calling each other to talk while were having a smoke, even though we were talking on icq 30 sec before were a great friend and I will never forgot the greta memories we had



May 28, 2003 01:27

Karrie Dylnicks


Its been over a year since Ive had the courage to write.  Lately I find myself thinking a lot about Ryan.  I find I have so many feelings left unsaid, I just cant find the words to say them.  If only he could hear the stories and thoughts of so many friends, and how much love he brought to all of us.  How much help writing our thoughts as a group has helped us cope.  Losing a friend is an experience I wish upon no one.  Ryan was a fantastic friend, and I miss him a ton.   I wish I could be back at Sheridan, with him playing the waving game across the class to me, or going for breakfast at 11am.  He helped make my life at Sheridan great.


Please everyone respect your friends, family, boyfriend or girlfriend, something could arise at anytime that could change your life.  Tell someone that you love them, or that they have changed your life in a great way.  Dont leave it unsaid.  If Ryan could hear the amazing letters and stories written about him, and how many people adored and loved him......but Im sure he knew, you could just tell with his smile.  My life is amazing just from knowing him.  He helped make my life what it is.  I am so happy to have known him.  I thank all his family and friends for giving eachother strength through one another.  I found a poem in an old yearbook on friendship and would love to share it with you.


A friend is one of the nicest things you can have, and one of the nicest things you can be.         A friend is a smile.  A friend is a hand holding yours.  No matter where you are.  A friend is a feeling of forever in the heart.





October 15, 2003 20:25

Yvonne Desjardins


Well, today would have been Ryan's 24th birthday.  Almost a year and a half has passed since Ryan's death and it's still hard to comprehend.

Bro, I just want you to know that I'm thinking about you today and wishing you were here.  You made a big impact on so many people during the short time you were with us and I'm so proud of you for so many reasons.

I hope that there are computers in Heaven so that you can keep track of how many times you are thought of in a day - and especially today.

Love, Sis



March 11, 2004 2:03 PM

Tim Perry


Well its coming on two years since you left. I have alot of things I must confess in this email. First of all. You have been in my mind intensely lately. I think of you and smile, knowing i had a chance to meet u and call you my friend. I just cant get over the fact that you had to leave. My mom who never actually met Ryan except for a moment was upset when you passed. Cuz she had said she had never heard me talk so great about someone. Its true I dont think I ever had one bad thought about you. I mean one time I needed a ride into Hamilton to the dentist ...I didnt want to call Ry cuz i knew he would do the favour but hey thats what friends are for. What I didnt know till after he picked me up was he left his class in Oakville to come get me and drive me to Hamilton and didnt accept any money in return. I know I drove him around and did favours for him. But i wish i had more chances to show him how that simple favour touched me so much. Since then I find myself goin back to bars to pick up my friends even when im not there or helping out people if i can without asking anything in return. If i get to be half the person you were in my entire lifetime I would be content. I know many of our friends visit your site and if this is posted well then they shall now know. I have visited where you lay and I find myself talking to u and asking for help. The freakiest day of my life happened when i was talking to you it was nice and sunny in the summer. I was very lost at the time and I get in my car after my "chat" with you and the radio turns onto jimmy eat world "the middle". Well many of you will know he loved jimmy eat world number one and two listen to the words in "the middle". I never really beleived in anything until you left many of our friends aNd me questioning Heaven& after name it..all that we cant see. Too many signs points to the fact i beleive you are watching us rite now. Theres no way you would leave us early if there wasnt a heaven that was short on angels. I know my friends have a notion of me but i guess they will learn something. I write poetry. yea yea i know i know..but i have a poem for you my friend.

                                Touched-Tim Perry

                Its been two years since youve been gone
                But in my heart, forever you belong
                Time after time i find myself in deep thought about you
                Why you were taken early I havent a clue
                My assumption on why you left and I believe it to be true
                In a world of black and shades of grey, your soul beamed white
                Because your wings were far too big and blindingly bright
                So heaven came early and brought you into the light
                The bind you gave those you knew will never bend
                For we all can rest assured we had an angel as our friend.

Im  really sorry for this being a long email but this goes out to all of you who will read this. I have become deeply philosophical with life and I have came to many conclusions and I would like to share them with all of you to make you think and maybe change he way you live your life.

The meaning of life- The meaning of life is that it is to be lived, and it is not to be traded or conceptualized and squeezed into a pattern of systems.

The secret of life- James Allen stated " a man is literally what he thinks"

Life is something for which there is no answer; it must be understood from moment to moment- the answer we find inevitably conforms to teh pattern of waht we think we know.

Enjoy Yourself- Remember life is too short for negative energy. I will say this rite now and it may seem like nothing but it is the most powerful statement one can make. YOU HAVE ONE LIFE. You are here you are now. so live. Be courteous and kind to others. Do you know 58 seconds of each minute is thought about the future. Imagine if you took those 58 seconds and started living in the NOW?

Jimmy Eat World The Middle lyrics
Dont't write your self off yet,
It's only in your head you feel left out,
And looked down on.

Just try your best,
Try everything you can,
And don't you worry
What they tell themselves when your away.

It just takes some time,
you're in the middle of the ride,
Everything everything will be just fine,
Everything everything will be alright, alright.

You know they're all the same,
You know you're doing better on your own,
so don't buy in,
Live right now,
Just be yourself,
It doesn't matter if it's good enough,
For someone else.



March 16, 2004


Ryan photo album – click here.



March 16, 2004

Lorrainne Desjardins


It has been 2years since Ryan has gone on to other things.It' s very hard for me to believe it's been that long.It seems like yesterday.I still wait for him to come charging in the door and running up the stairs 2 at a time to his room.Some days I think I can hear him and feel his presence in his room.I can hear him saying "don't you fall asleep in my bed mom".....but I do anyways , just like I did when I hung out with Ry. He always kept me informed of his life and shared his thoughts and his friends with me. He always made me smile even when I was at my lowest.Some times when he was mad at me or pissed off I would try to make him laugh . He always did. He said he could never stay mad very long.I'm sure that was the goodness in him and the way he always saw things in a positive way.


He has come to me in my dreams to comfort me whenI'm stressed or unhappy.It's always with that wonderful smile he had to offer us all.


It has been great to see some of his friends over the years and to see what they are up to in thier lives. I sometimes wonder what he would be doing now...besides being on the computer.His room is still as he left it except with a few clean-ups.I just can't bring myself to change it just yet. As Sean says..."if we change it ,it will never be the same." I know our lives will never be the same but we are trying to move on one day at a time. I know we will change things some day...... but not just yet! Ryan's friends find it sometimes hard to talk to us and don't know what to say ....Just be yourselves ,like you would have been with Ry.

Miss you my son...your always in my heart..I think of you every daywith love .






October 15, 2004

Lorrainne Desjardins


Today Ryan would have been a quarter of a century old. He would have been out earning a living ( we hope) by now, finished with school,and so on and so on.........His life ended early but his memory and our memories of him will live on,in our hearts and our minds eye. Ryan would be proud of his brother Sean. His creativity comes from another direction and Ryan would enjoy that and the food he


Let us all together sing Happy Birthday to Ryan in our own way today and do something  he would like to see you enjoy.....sort of like a party for him.


Cheers,Enjoy and good health to all


Love Jugsmom

alias Mom



March 15th 2005 9:43pm

Dave Vaillancourt


Hard to believe its been 3 years yet it seems like yesterday for alot of us.  Your by no way forgotten. All our jokes and laughs will not be forgotten.  Definetly never forget that jim carry movie we rented with Palmer, "RubberFace" !  haha







March 15, 2006 11:11 PM

Lorrainne Desjardins


This is the eve of our son passing. I remember saying all day "Beware the Ides of March"...a line from Shakspeare. I never thought I would have to beware that day.It is like a memory etched in my mind forever. It seems like yesterday to me. I'm hoping all of Ryan's friends have got on with there lives and are doing well. Sometimes I run into a few of you and it is good to see those familiar faces. It reminds me of all the fun times Ryan had with all of you and all the laughter that I heard in our home.


Sean is doing well and has just been accepted to work in the Camin Islands at the Rites Carlton. We wish him well and will miss him a great deal.


Ryan will always be with us in spirit and so will all his friends.


Love Mom



March 16, 2006 7:23 PM

Jenn Crass


I'll never forget you buddy - I miss you so much.

And to the Desjardins family, my thoughts are with you everyday.

Love always - Jenn Crass



March 29, 2006 12:20 PM

Christine Dawson


Hi my name his Christine Dawson my son shaun was one of ryans friends. I just wanted to say I think about him a lot and I still miss him. I see my shaun getting on with his life and I wish ryan was still there.



I will remember him allways.


Chris Dawson.



April 16, 2006 10:40 AM

Susan Yurincich


Hard to believe it's been 4 years since Ryan passed away.  I like to visit this page from time to old entries and just think about Ry.  The page is such a nice way of remembering him and makes me feel connected to him somehow. I still talk with some of Ryan's friends and his parents from time to time, so it's nice to be connected in that way too.  Still when I think of Ryan, I can only think of good things...easily one of the sweetest and most genuine people I've ever known, and probably will ever know.
Love you Ry



October 22, 2006 1:23 AM

Matt Seymour


I found this page by accident one night when I was searching for my friend Ryan. I'm living in Alberta now, but I've never stopped thinking about my friend. I was your friend from as early as I can remember. I've never met someone as funny and talented since I've met Ryan. I'll never forget the days that we spent together...the days of drawing, playing video games and playing tag. Just growing up together. I just wish I could have been with Ryan more before he left us. Ryan, you left us too soon, and I wish to convey my condolences to your whole family.


Matthew Seymour



Monday, October 23, 2006 1:27 PM

Lorrainne Desjardins


Another year has gone....Ryan would have been 27 yrs old. As every year goes by I wonder what he would be doing at this stage in his life.

His friends have moved on to a different phase in thier lives, as it should be.

Ryan's brother is working for "The Ritz Carlton" in the Grand Cayman islands.  Has worked as a Chef since George Brown College. We were just there with Sean and we all thought of Ryan too. 

We are very proud of Sean's accomplishments and would have been just as proud of Ryan. I'm sure Ry is keeping a close watch out for his bro.


Shaun Dawson ,Ryan's best friend since childhood is now engaged to be married to a beautiful young lady.


Sues, his ol' girlfiend is off persuing courses ,after graduating from university ,in Austrailia.


We occasionally see Ryan and Jen out for breakfast.


We sometimes run into some of Ryan's friends and it is great to see what they are up to in thier lives.


We miss you son and a day never goes by without thinking of you.


Happy Bithday

Love Mom ,Dad and Sean



Saturday, February 10, 2007 10:26 PM

Jeanne Morgan


I happened upon this site as I looked for a Winnie the Pooh song.  I found a Pooh poem and many tears!  My heart goes out to all who knew Ryan.  I cried this evening for a man and a family that I don't even know.  There are wonderful poems here by friends and family.  I hope that you will copyright them.  Kevin's poem is especially touching.  I lost a good friend and father of seven children.  He was 36 years old and died of a suddden heart attack.  That poem fits him to a tee.  God bless you!




December 29, 2007 (received and posted July 2008)

Haley Sheldrake


I was thinking about Ryan today. How he was always over at my parents house hanging out with my brother, joining our family for dinner and making us all laugh. I miss that time in my life, even though at the time I was mostly asking them to shut up, cause they were so loud. But anyone who knew Ryan also knows that he had a way of diffusing any situation. Our family loved , love and miss Ryan. I’ll always remember STP, large coffee double double and a pack of  DM zigs. So where ever you may be, thank-you for being such an amazing friend to my brother when he needed a friend like you. Must have been an angle, your time was short but the impact you left wasn’t.  Haley Sheldrake



March 16, 2009 10:23 AM

Lorrainne Desjardins


It has Been 7 years


Time passes too seems like yesterday to me ....his mom. This will be the first year that I won't be at his grave site. I'm in St Maarten with Ryan's Aunt Madalaine.It is too bad he never got to come see her in his lifetime but I'm sure he is here with us all today.Our thoughts pass through all the fun times we had with Ryan on this day. He was a wonderful asset to our family and many of his friends. I have seen some of his friends over the years and they still keep him in there hearts. He made such an impact on us all. We miss you ever so much Ry. I can't believe you would have been 30 this year in October. What would you have been up to by now always passes through my mind. Life has gone on but not the same as if you were here. We are so happy to see some of the pictures Ryan and his friends took so we can all have those great memories.My heart dies a little every time I think of you. I have lost a piece of me forever. You will be with me in spirit my son and you come to me in time of need..............Thank you.




March 16, 2010 10:57 AM

Lorrainne Desjardins


This is the Anniversary of Ryan's passing! I can't believe it has been 8 years. He would have been 30 this past October. Where would he be in his life now? Like all of his friends...............carrying on ,doing what life brings them.

To all of his friends: Thank you for your thoughts and wishes when we meet. It is nice to see where you are in your lives.

To me, the events seem like yesterday. I suppose they always will. Ryan took a part of me when he left, that will never return. My prayers and thoughts are always with him . He comforts me in times when I need it, when I go sleep in his room. I still hear him say" Mom don't you fall asleep there", and of course I always would. Who even knew that would be my sanctuary!!!!!!!!!

Now known as the computer room but will always be Ryan's room to me.We have changed a few things in there but not much. He would be horrified to know his mother bought a Mac and is actually liking it.So is his is using the old one in his office with a new screen.Thanks to the efforts of Ryan's cousin Gordon ,the ol' thing still works with a few upgrades over the years.

We all miss the coming and goings of Ryan's friends as they use to grace our home with their fun and laughter. We have some of Sean's friends doing that now with the help of Dawn (Sean's Girlfriend) and of course the new addition to the family(Lew)a new cat who replaced Toby after his short history of kidney failure. Missy still graces the house with her immense figure of a cat and dominates Lew's surroundings as the leading cat of the house.They, together allow the rest of us to live there as long as we provide them the comforts they desire.Ryan loved his cats.

God bless you all on your journey in life and we will keep posting things for you as long as we live.


Love Mom




March 16, 2010 8:07 PM



Miss you so much


Here it is 8 years and I miss you so much my dear nephew. I would have loved for you to have come to see what I am doing now. A year ago your Mom and I were here together on the island of St. Maarten.

I also remember how you used to tease me so much about having a Mac computer and this past Christmas I slept in your old room at the house and your mother had just bought a new computer. I could feel you looking over my shoulder as I used it. I think you would have approved. :)


Keep looking over us my dear Ryan. Try not to get into too much trouble with Uncle Shane.


Love and miss you

Aunt Mad




June 18, 2010 2:42 PM

Sabrina Alberghetti




It's been a long time...I've moved a long way since that day, but my thoughts and memories of you have come with me.  Still think about you everyday...I hope you're happy wherever you are.





October 15, 2010 7:16 AM

Lorrainne Desjardins


Another year has passed and Ryan would be 31 today.Eight years after your passing we have found out why you died. It was your mother's genes that pased on this to you.Ryan's mom has a congenital heart abnormality that caused a heart irregularity that cause Ryan to probably die, Yes I had passed on this to him. The medical field has done research into sudden death in young people and is continuing to look into this . I had developed this recently and they don't know why,now, but figure this is why Ryan died so young. It is a congenital thing and may be passed on to some of my children and not to others.(the luck of the draw so to speak).

Ryan I miss you soooooooooo much and I'm sorry about this gene pool I have. At least we know what happened and now your friends know.Look over us and keep us safe down here.


Happy Birthday son


Love mom



October 21, 2010 6:57 PM

Sabrina Alberghetti


Just wanted to thank Lorrainne for the's a bit of closure after so many curious years.  And thank you for bringing such a wonderful person into this world, we will never forget him.





February 8, 2012 1:25 PM

Brad D'Silva


As it is coming up to 10 years, I can't help and reflect back on the great times I shared with Ryan. It has been sometime since I have been to this site but I am also happy to read that after so long the cause has been found. I am hoping that brings some closure. As someone who recently also lost a child, I now can relate to how difficult this really has been on his family and my thoughts and prayers have and will forever be with Ryan and all of his family.


I also wanted to extend my gratitude once again, I feel very blessed to have known Ryan even though it was just for a short period of time.


Gone but never forgotten. I miss you Ryan.


Brad D'Silva



March 15, 2012 10:05 PM

Lorrainne Desjardins


The years have passed very quickly . I can't believe Ryan has been gone from us physically for 10 years now. He has never left my heart and my thoughts. I think of him every day and he brings a smile to me often. He would be appauled that I am writing this on a MAC!!!!!!!in his old room where his Aunt Madalaine now resides most evenings with a Dog named Charlie. They have both brought us great joy and loads of laughs..........especially the dog!!!!!!!

I still to this day see those brave policemen standing at our door delivering such terrible news of his passing..........It is like yesterday.


We are continuing our lives as best we can and moving forward in life. We all think of you and all your unique ways you made it into all our hearts.Many of your friends continue to think of you and know you are watching over us all.






March 15, 2012 10:28 PM

Yvonne Jayasekera (Ryan’s sister)


You are right Lorrainne, Ryan has never left our hearts or our thoughts.  Today I was thinking of all the times Kevin and I were able to spend with him and Sean when they were young.  Thank you for trusting us with them, whether we were taking them for the weekend, or taking them out for dinner or to the C.N.E.  It is difficult to go to certain places without thinking of Ryan.  He would have been a very respectable and amiable man right now, and just as loved as ever.  Everyone in the family loves and misses you Ryan.  You will live in our hearts and minds forever and ever.



March 14, 2013 7:26 PM

Lorrainne Desjardins


It will be 11 years since our son's the years pass quickly but the memories never do. That fateful day that police came to our door to announce our son had died. Parents never expect this to happen to them . It may happen to other people and their hearts go out to those people. But yes it did happen to us. It has taken a tole on our lives in many ways. Myself as his mother, I find it so hard to believe every year. I wonder where Ryan would be in his life. What would be his profession?Would he be married? Would we have more grandchildren from another son? Who would be his chosen wife?.....and so many more questions come into my head every year as I see the age he would have been this year. His siblings would be different people also as he would be in their lives. All our children bring us joy but when one is gone it stand out in your mind. You don't love him any more than the others just miss him because you can't see him. He does live in my heart as I'm sure he lives in other 's hearts.


We pass through our lives seeing some of his friends and see how they are getting through life. It is always nice to see them and see them progress in their lives. They always bring a smile to my heart and face as I see them. Don't ever feel you can't approach us. Your presence always brings back the happy memories. I always stay in those happy memories except around this time of year. This is the saddest part of the year for me. I stay busy and still those sounds and thoughts of that fateful night creep into my head. Reminding me a little part of me has died. My family and friends keep me focused most of the time .........but not around this time of year. If you are a parent you will understand......if not a parent you can be empathetic but not really know the true feeling of loss. Spring is just around the corner and all will be in bloom soon once again,along with my happy thoughts of my son Ryan.


I love my dear funny and hansom son


Love forever

Mom March 2013



March 15, 2014 10:13 AM

Lorrainne Desjardins


The loss of one of my sons is in my head and heart today. I can't believe it has been 12 years. I look at Sean and see the growth. How can you not wonder where the other son would be by now.I see his friends on occasion and see them moving forward in their lives. It is always so nice to see them and catch up on what they are doing in their lives. All Ryan's friends were such a big part of our lives as we welcomed them all into our home. Yes we are still in the same place. Both Mr D and I are semi retired. Sean continues to move up in his endeavors and is now a Kitchen Manager. One stepdaughter married and one step son divorced. He has enjoyed watching his daughter become a great goalie for her team(our Grand daughter). She has also become a lovely young lady moving on to High school in the fall. Ryan would have loved to see her games.Sean has been there many times to root her team on to victory. Ryan's Aunt who has spent many hours in his room over the years has moved on th Winnipeg ( not one of her favorite places ) but you go where the jobs are these days.

I could go on but I just wanted to update our lives for Ryan's friends and let them know we often think of them along with our son,Whose voice is silent but the spirit echoes still.


Your loving mom



November 20, 2015 2:46 PM

Kevin Desjardins


On November 10th 2015 our Brother Ryan welcomed our Father Ken to the gate of heaven after a yearlong battle with cancer…


In our hearts we know

The afterglow

The soul departs

The journey home


Not of sorrow

But celebrate

The love of life

Our Father made


Of memories cherished

Of family strong

Instilled in us

Eternal bonds


It’s not goodbye

Again we’ll be

Until we meet

Watch over me


Luv You Dad!





March 14, 2016 5:11 PM

Lorrainne Desjardins


To all who venture in to the Ryan Room:


It was a very stressful year for us. Ryan's dad has gone to join him. I am sure they both will be smiling to each other and giving each other comfort. I can only hope they both will watch over us all as we try to continue our journey without their physical presence.

Mr Ken Desjardins passed away peacefully, with his family at his side, on Nov 10 2015. We are happy to see Ken's suffering end ,but we miss him desperately.

It is a huge adjustment for us all in the family. Ken spent his last year in Cancer treatments ; at his side were his many good friends and family spending wonderful days on our deck. This summer was very memorable for us all,especially Ken, who enjoyed every moment of his time with family and friends.

He knew he was getting close to seeing Ryan and his other family members .He was happy for that but sad to leave us all behind. He fought a good fight to stay with us as long as he could. He had a zest for life just like Ryan.


14 years have passed since Ryan's death. It seems like yesterday to me(his mom).Ryan's cousin had a beautiful wedding this fall. I am sure he was dancing his feet off with her and her family and friends. His Aunt's pup(Charlie) is with him now also, along with his two cats (Missy and Toby) which we kept as healthy as we could till their time was up. I have a feeling they are all having a great time. Ryan will show his dad the ropes and greet him with open arms.

Those who take the time to come here to the Ryan Room will always be in our thoughts and prayers.

Bless you all and love your life!!!!! time goes far too quickly.

I miss you guys


Love mom & wife



March 15, 2016 2:37 PM

Madalaine Patzalek


Our family seems to continue to have people to miss in our lives and Ryan, you are always missed each and every day. Your Uncle Shane. Uncle Sam  and your dad have joined you and our heart aches for all of you to be out of our lives ( two of them at least ) but we know you must be up to such mischief all together.  Feels not that long ago we went through this horrible day together. You were taken from us much too soon. Our love is always there for you though.


Love Aunt Mad ( on her HP all-in-one) yeah I finally have a REAL computer!



January 16, 2017 8:32 PM

Brad D'Silva


It has been some time since I have visited this site. I still miss you very much Ryan. I'm saddened to hear of your father passing upon viewing the website. However I am sure the two of you have been catching up on lost time. Gone but never forgotten my friend.



March 16, 2018 8:16 AM

Lorrainne Desjardins


16 years ago I lost you suddenly. As each year passes it still seems like yesterday.

This year you have been joined with your dad and brother Kevin.

We miss you all very much. There is a big emptiness in our hearts.

Watch over us all….we need all the help we can get from above.





March 16, 2021 3:35 PM

Lorrainne Desjardins

Tribute to you

The time has gone by so fast! Each day in the last year seems like the last. Pandemic has kept us all from seeing each other. I have spent a whole year with your brother,Sean, and we haven’t killed each other. Made some fond memories together . The house has been designated as “Desjardino’s” for all the cooking we have done in the past year. Your dad, brother Kevin , and aunt Mad have joined you in your heavenly home. Along with grandparents you are in good company.

We miss you each and every day. You are forever young in our eyes and hearts.

Sean misses you more than you know.....doesn’t always express it openly but I know he does. Time is suppose to heal all wounds but it never does. Loosing you was the hardest thing to bear in my life. A piece of me is always with you.

Love Mom



October 15, 2021 2:13 PM

Lorrainne Desjardins

Ryan's Birthday 2021

Today brings back wonderful memories of the birth of Ryan into the Desjardins family. He would have turned 42 today, but we only had a short time with him. We lost this gentle soul when he was only 22 years old. He brought lots of laughs and happiness to his family in those short years. Althought it took the medical field 7 more years to find out how we lost Ryan, at least many families can know that the medical field does progress. A rare arrythmia brought on by Adrenaline (catecholamine polymorphic ventricular tachycardia). Thought the voice is quiet his spirit echoes still and always in my heart and mind.

Miss you everyday of my life son

Love Mom



October 15, 2022 9:42 PM

Lorrainne Desjardins

Ryan's Birthday 2022

Another year has gone by with missing my son Ryan. Looking over the entries into the Ryan has giving me lots of good memories. I miss him every day. I brought him into our lives 43 years ago. He blessed us with his smile, his positivity and his great sense of humour. This lifetime tribute to him reminds me of how many people he touched ,befriended and inspired in his short life. We all had him for a short time, only lasting 22 years. He has been joined with some family over the last few years.

Prayers and love and hugs are sent your way today from mom! Thought the voice is quiet,your spirit echoes still !!

Love always mom



March 2, 2023 7:48 AM

Christine hodgson


It's bin so long and I wish I had the strength to post sooner I am Christine, I was Ryan's sister in law when he passed and the mom of his nephew Korey and he has never bin forgotten, Korey is into his 20s now and I'm hoping can learn more about the uncle he never got to meet, forever in our minds.

Christine hodgson