«« [email protected] no more
blog header image
Derek Lowe's (Ryan's older brother) words at Ryan's funeral

Ryan Lowe passed away on Monday, November 30, 2009. He was cremated, then buried in the Catholic cemetery in Almonte, as per his wishes.

Below are the beautiful words of his older brother Derek.

To pass along along stories or photos, or to simply learn more, please visit Ryan's memorial page (available on facebook):


While Ryan and I had spent almost every day together when he was young, due to our age difference we had not spent as much time together since I went away to University when he was ten. There were, however, some times we spent together over the years that I would like to share with you.

Ryan, Jon and I had the opportunity to spend a week in Barbados to celebrate their respective graduations from University. Ryan was in great physical shape then – confident and carefree. That week was one of the highlights of my life, with all three brothers being able to spend time together as ‘adults’ (although some of our actions may have led people to question that status). That is how I will remember Ryan.

When Ryan graduated Engineering, I had the privilege of presenting Ryan with his Iron Ring. At the ceremony, he said the oath, I put the ring on his finger, he gave me a hug, and the moment was quickly over. I knew he appreciated it, and it was a special moment for both of us. Ryan then shook my hand and, before he went back to his seat, said “We’re almost done, so we can go get a beer soon – until then don’t bother any of the women in the gallery”, deflecting from the brief seriousness of the moment. That is how I will remember Ryan.

While I always knew that Ryan was good at what he did for a living, developing websites, I hadn’t seen much of it for myself (as many of his projects were very secretive). In the last couple of years, we had the opportunity to partner on a project, and once we decided what we wanted the site to do, it wasn’t long before he made that happen, and more. A few years ago, SAP, one of the largest software companies in the world, found Ryan through his blog, and paid to have him go to Las Vegas to speak to their people about Ruby on Rails, a relatively new computer language (at the time). It was at this point that I started to understand the level of Ryan’s ability. That is how I will remember Ryan.

All along, Ryan has handled his situation with dignity and without ever complaining. When Jon and I visited him at his apartment this past summer with Dad, he seemed more concerned about us than he did with himself. Despite the fact that he was not eating much at the time and he was clearly uncomfortable, he wanted to make sure that he gave Jon advice on getting internet service set up at his new house, so he didn’t pay too much or get sub-par service.

Also, out of the blue, Ryan looked up and said to us “I am at about 130 right now, so I have you both beat” (we had all had running weight joke over the years, with each of us trying to lose or gain weight at different times), so we knew Ryan had not lost his sense of humour. When I sensed that Ryan had become tired of the visit, I said “Well, we should go – I am getting a bit hungry and I promised Jon some supper”. Ryan’s response was “…and here I am eating a Jell-o right in front of you”, even though it was one of the few things he had managed to eat so far that day. Even in his current situation, he found time for humour. That is how I will remember Ryan.

One night, more recently, as I was holding a cool cloth to Ryan’s head, he opened his eyes suddenly (which was sometimes just a reflex, so we weren’t sure if he was awake). When this happened, I always said ‘Hi Ryan’ and this time he said ‘Hey’ back. I told him it was me and I asked him if it was okay if I sat with him, and he said ‘Ya’. I said ‘I Love you Ryan’ and he said ‘I love you too’. That was the last conversation I had with Ryan.

My recent time with Ryan has shown me a lot about the person he had become, as has seeing, and speaking with, many of you, and it has made me even more proud to have had him as my brother.

I love you Ryan. We all love you.

Posted at March 19, 2010 at 08:03 AM EST
Last updated March 19, 2010 at 08:03 AM EST
Search scope: Web ryanlowe.ca