Remembering Ryan Bailey
To know him was to love him.
This is one of the many words of love, mourning and sadness expressed in the wake of Ryan Bailey’s sudden passing this weekend in Towson.
Ryan has been described as not only a great friend, but an overall great person by so many who hear this news. One student went as far as to say that the world would be better if there were more Ryan Baileys in it.
It seems in his short life there is nothing but positivity and love that surround his name.
The comments friends made about him are about how he constantly had a smile on his face, and how so many felt so blessed to have known him, been around him, or were lucky enough to call him a friend.
When presented with this situation, one’s first thought may be how the world be worse off without someone as wonderful as Ryan. Yet his roommate of three years insists that Ryan watching over everyone will make everyone feel better, as they have gained an angel to keep them safe.
Sam, Ryan’s roommate of three years, said Ryan was one of the most loving, responsible and smart people whom he had ever met. Sam and many who were close to Ryan, including Sigma Chi brothers, said that no one has ever said a bad word about Ryan.
He was truly one of a kind and loved by all with whom he crossed paths.
As college students, many of us rightfully feel that we are invincible.
We feel that our friends, our lives and our safety are here to stay. Losing Ryan was a bold reminder of how our lives can change in just the blink of an eye, and how nothing is guaranteed. It was a red flag to remind us to call home, talk to friends and let everyone know just how much we love them.
If anything can be gained from this situation, it is that we should let those around us know how we feel about them. Tell your friends, family, anyone that you love them, because you never know if the day will come when your chance has passed.
So where do we go from here? Not only as individuals, but as a University and campus community?
Our hearts are heavy and hurting and there is possibly nothing to be done to cure our sadness.
There is no answer, nothing will make us feel better. But moving on from this we can do better, if nothing else.
Take all of the positive energy, the smiles and the friendship that were Ryan and use them to make this world a better place. Smile through your sadness and live your life the way Ryan would. Follow his example, and Towson will be a much better, friendlier and happier place in his memory.
In the weeks, months and years ahead, Ryan will forever be a loving, caring 20-year-old boy with a smile permanently on his face.
We will all grow up, but in our minds, he will never change. So many are so lucky to have precious memories of him that will be with them for a lifetime.
His light may not have shone for a long time, but it surely shone bright. Ryan, you will be forever missed.
“Some are bound to die young. By dying young a person stays young in people’s memory. If he burns brightly before he dies, his brightness shines for all time,” Alexander Solzhenitsyn.