Twenty-five year old Ryan Hawks died too young. During the 2011 Freeride World Tour Competition at Kirkwood, Hawks was terminally injured. He was a dynamic human being, with a passion and love for the mountains and skiing. He led a fulfilling life, dominated by fun, adventure, and determination. Although he was with us for only 25 short years, he lived every moment to its fullest.
After his death, Ryan's family discovered a document on his computer called “Ryan’s Core Principles for Living” and they made it their mission to share those principles as inspiration to live as fully and intentionally as Ryan did.
Ryan's simple, straight-forward rules to live by:
Live every day, all day
Never stop exploring life
Never lose my adventuresome attitude
Be the best friend I can be
Be the best brother, son, uncle I can
Look out for others
Look out for myself
Look out for our surroundings
Play like I’m thirteen
Don’t be afraid to ask for help
It’s not often that all an organization wants from you is to be a better person, but that’s the basis of Flyin’ Ryan. It asks you live by the principles that guided Ryan Hawks’ life, develop some of your own, and get others thinking about how they spend their days. There's no cost to join, nothing else you need to do.
“In grand terms we are trying to change the world, one person, one day, one event, decision, one core value at a time,” says Peter Hawks. The Senior Hawks and friends put out a quarterly newsletter "Good Deeds" which recognizes the “positive outcomes” generated by people living life to the fullest.
To date, Flyin’ Ryan has signed 23 organizations as Centers of Influence. Seven ski areas, Mad River, Smugglers Notch, Sugarbush, Snowbird, Alta, Powder Mountain and Taos, are all sharing the Flyin’ Ryan message to season pass holders. Vail, Telluride, Jackson Hole, Targhee, Kirkwood and other resorts are standing by to join the fold. And, Flyin' Ryan has a long list of athletes who've signed on in triute to Ryan, and who've committed to live by Ryan's principles.
Flyin' Ryan athlete and Freeride World Tour competitor Louise Lintilhac says, "I'm a Flyin' Ryan athlete becasue I strive to live by the core principles Ryan left us with. In this hectic world it can be hard to stop and smell the roses, and Ryan understood this concept. When I 'live everyday, all day' I am making a commitment to myself to not ever let my doubts get in the way of what I can achieve."
Taking things one step farther, he foundation levels the financial playing field for passionate adventurers who instinctively or purposely live by Ryan’s principles. "The foundation is helping to create a world where we never have an excuse to delay our dreams, whatever they may be," says Lintilhac. "By providing financial support, it's empowering people of all ages to strive to be great in athletics, and maybe more importantly, in attitude. "
The project has achieved cult-like status at the grassroots level, particularly in the Freeride Ski world. Ski the East is selling Flyin' Ryan Logowear that helps fund the foundation, including rasta colored socks, hats, tee shirts and more. Apply, take the pledge, or learn more about the Flyin’ Ryan Foundation at flyinryanhawks.org.