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Location: Athens, Ga, United States

Our son Ryan was diagnosed with stage 4 Neuroblastoma in 2004. In 2007, my wife Missy was diagnosed with stage 2 triple negative breast cancer. On July 8th, 2009, Missy lost her battle to this horrible disease. 2 days later, on July 10th, Ryan also lost his. Together forever, they both watch over our family now from the heavens above. Below is our families journey through Ryan's treatments, along with the joy and laughter we tried to instill into our daily lives. Those days helped us all cope with the pain and suffering that comes with cancer and it's deadly treatments. Both Missy and Ryan endured high doses of chemo, radiation and surgeries. Over 150 nights spent in the hospital and many, many more days. More transfusions than I could count. Yet both Missy and Ryan took on each day with a positive attitude and warm smile for all their friends. We miss them terribly. They will always be a shining light in our lives.

Friday, July 10, 2009


Missy is holding one of her babies...

Early this afternoon, Heidi, Will and myself let our little Ryan go to be with Missy. He was so peaceful. I can feel Missy's arms wrapped around this shattered family, trying hard to make us be at peace.
Les, Heidi and Will

Guest Book:
Words can not begin to express the sorrow that I hold for your family.

I can only say that Missy was there to truely welcome Ryan to his new home, where she will hold and cuddle him.
I'm so sorry. My heart hurts for your family. May God be your comfort and strength. I think it's really something that Ryan was welcomed home by his mommy who went before him to lead the way. God Bless you all in the days ahead.
Thanks for the artistic and truly beautiful photos that came with this sorrowful announcement. Believe me, I know that you would have done anything to keep this from happening. Please be gentle with yourselves.

I met your sweet family at Family Camp a few years back- what a testament of devotion to one another you are! I'm so thankful to have had the chance to see your family doing what you loved to do, spending time together. I'm praying, as we speak, for a peace that passes every ounce of our earthly understanding; knowing that Missy has gone ahead to welcome sweet Ryan in to his forever home helps us to understand an ounce of God's plan.

Covering you in constant prayer.
We are praying for peace for your family. We met your family last year at Lighthouse, and the love and devotion that your family has to one another is amazing. In the midst of it all the positive shined through. The world truly lost two wonderful people this week.
My heart breaks for you and your family. I am so sorry.

You all are in my thoughts and prayers.
I cant even begin to imagine your pain. My heart breaks for you all. I have followed Missy & Ryan for quite some time but have not ever written. May God bless you and give you all strength, comfort and peace as you prepare to lay your precious wife, mother, child and brother to rest next week. I am so very sorry....
I have followed the stories of both Ryan and Missy for sometime. I lift all of you up in prayer...may God's grace be sufficient and may you feel His loving presence all around you.
I cannot begin to express the sadness in our hearts today. May God hold them both and comfort each of you.
I have silently followed your site for a while now. I pray so hard for your family everyday, and those prayers will not cease. To see the impact Missy and Ryan have both had on so many people's lives is powerful. I pray for a great deal of strength and peace for the rest of the heartbroken family and friends left here.
I am so very sorry. Thank God Missy could welcome Ryan! heart hurts for you all!!!! May God bless you more then you could ever think possible!

All our love,
Team brAvery
I am so sorry. My heart breaks for you three. You are in my prayers.
We have followed you silently for many years as faithful, fellow NB warriors. To say we are sorry is a terrible understatement. Please know that while Missy and Ryan have their arms around you, there are so many of us you don't know who also hope that you can feel our support wrapped around you from afar. There are no words to express our sympathies. We lift up you all in our prayers.
My favorite memory of Ryan, though I never got the privilege to meet him in person, is that picture of him standing amongst the Hooters girls with a "I am getting away with something here and I know it" smirk on his face. I would have liked to have met Ryan - I'm sure I would have learned a lot from him.

I don't have a single favorite memory of Missy. I have many. She was one of the three NB moms whose unsolicited advice and encouragement I always was happy to receive (other two being Vickie B and Donna L). I hope you don't mind, but I posted some of those emails and blog comments below.

what a beautiful face, a beautiful spirit. We think of you everyday and pray for your strength.
Missy Morgan

Just wanted you guys to know you have been on my mind. It is so painful to think of how much you must miss Max. I wish there were someway to relieve that. We are praying for you to be able to stay as strong today as you have been the last three years.
Love, Missy

Hi Andy and Melis, Just checking on you guys this morning. Max is getting the same chemo as Ryan and they let us do it all at home. The visiting nurse comes the first day and accesses his port. sometimes she brings the irinotecan with her and sometimes they deliver it separately. anyway, it comes in 5 bulbs, one for each day and we keep it in the fridge. I don't know the physics of the bulb, but we just hook it up to his line and it pumps in over an hour. his temodar is oral, which I think it always is. you might ask if ya'll could do the same so Max doesn't have to go to the clinc. I know they have onemore kid doing this here at CHOA. We are praying for ya'll.
Have a great Sunday,
Missy Morgan

Hi Andy and Melis, the new pics of Max getting accessed just broke my heart. I'm sure you're not short on suggestions, and I hesitate to make one, but-- If Max is only having a blood draw could he just have an arm stick? Ryan always prefers this to accessing his port. As a matter of fact, a week ago at the clinic he insisted on a finger stick, and our poor nurse just pumped and pumped his finger to get enough. Ryan's platelets are slow to respond, too and I have had the same sorts of things on my mind as well. I hope you will post the answers you get from your docs. we are praying his catecholomines drop and he gets a break. take care-
Missy Morgan
(superryan's mommy)

Our son, Ryan, just started the irinotecan and temodar. We go to the clinic the first day and a nurse comes out the next four to give it to him at home. He did great with that. It only works because he doesn't need all the hydration that usually comes with the chemo. The iri. only runs an hour and the tem. is oral. Could that work for ya'll so Max doesn't have to go to the clinic? Also, Ryan does better when he starts with an empty stomach. He had no nausea on those days. Good luck with it!
Missy Morgan
I am crying tears for all of you. Feelings of sadness, relief and lonliness.
Hugs, and Hugs, and Hugs from Regina, Saskatchewan.

Love your Canadian cousins,
Janet and Doug
Les ~ So many hearts are full of sorrow tonight. Many of those reading your blog are folks like me that you've never even met, yet our grief over the loss of Missy and Ryan cuts deep in our hearts. I pray it brings you a small measure of comfort to know that cyber-strangers all over the world are praying for you, Will, and Heidi. May God continue to hold you close and grant you His peace.
~Kathy in Richardson, Texas
My heart aches for you.

I know Missy was waiting with arms wide open while Ryan ran full speed into them.
I'm so sorry. Your family is in my prayers.
I am heartbroken for your family. I can not imagine how devastating it is to lose Missy and Ryan within 2 days. Please accept my heartfelt condolences. I will be praying for your family.

Love in Christ,
Cole’s (Caring Openly, Loving Eternally) prayer team
Sandy Daron
I am so truly sorry. May you find just a bit of comfort from those who surround you in love and prayers now.
My thoughts and my prayers and my deepest sympathy to your entire family. Know you are being thought of.
My heart is broken for your family and my eyes are filled with tears over the loss of Missy and Ryan. You all, as a family, fought this beast of cancer with such love, strength, faith, and grace. Sending you love and comfort, today and in the many days ahead.
I have silently followed your family's journeys for several years and can't begin to adequately express to you the sorrow that I feel for you, Les, Heidi and Will. Your loss is huge. I pray that your faith sustains you and that the peace that can only come from him is yours. I stand amazed in God's sovereignty...that He allowed for Missy to be at Heaven's gates so that she and Ryan could experience it all hand in hand. I will continue to pray for your family.
I cant imagine the emotions you must be dealing with right now. I volunteered on a few Lighthouses with your family and I love Ryan and Missy so much. What amazing people they are and what a strong family you have. My prayer for your family is that you rely on God to get you through this time. I know he has a plan for your family and how awesome it is for Missy to be able to welcome Ryan home. They are in a much better place...a place with no pain, no needle sticks, and best of all there is no cancer! You are all in my thoughts and prayers!!
I am so sorry for the loss of your beautiful wife, mother, and friend, and for the loss of your courageous son. I will pray for peace and strength for your family during this difficult time. God bless.
I have no words. . .our hearts are broken over your loss. We were fortunate to spend time with you at Lighthouse last year and the amazing strength of Missy and Ryan's joyous and fun spirit were truly inspirational. We have been praying for you and your family and will continue to do so.
There are no words, just prayers. Praying for the peace and comfort that only God can provide, and thankful that Missy and Ryan are finally pain free.
Like others I too have followed the journey of Ryan and Missy. I am so saddened to hear of their passing, but grateful that Missy was there to meet Ryan and welcome him "home".

I pray for your family.
I am so sorry and will keep your family lifted in prayer.

C.O.L.E. Prayer Team
I came here from Sarah Smith's site. I just wanted to say how sorry I am and that my thoughts are with you - from across the world.

M Auld
Perth, Western Australia
Dear Wes,Will&Heidi, I followed your blog from Teamsam's. I am just so very very sorry for your tremendous double loss! The only comfort being is that Mother and son are in heaven together and are cancer free. The last two pictures were beautiful of Missy&Ryan,but I liked the one of Ryan,steering the sailboat on Lake Champlain; and of course, your happy family picture on the beach! I am praying for you and sending strong healing thoughts! Many people from around the world are with you in thoughts and prayers-- Take strength from all of them!
In Deepest Sympathy & Very Sincerely, Sara Maley "Sam's Gram"
How sad. I pray for you.
I'm so so sorry to hear of your loss. I just can't imagine the pain that is with your family at this time. My prayers are with all of you.
Les, I cannot even pretend to imagine the hurt you are all feeling right now. It's unfathomable to me. The only thing I hope is that it gives you all SOME comfort knowing that Ryan & Missy are TOGETHER, and will be celebrating all of the holidays, birthdays, and special events TOGETHER as you, Heidi, and Will celebrate down here on earth. They're together and they're pain-free...finally.

My heart hurts for you. Please know that I am praying for your strength. Strength in understanding. Strength in coping. Strength for the three of you to continue to hold each other up when you think you have nothing left. I'm so, so very sorry.

Always in my thoughts...
My sister forwarded your story to me. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your children. I hope you will be open with each other and understand everyone grieves differently.Share your grief,memories and pain. The grief process will be much like a pendulum. God has a plan it is really hard to see it now but, it will begin to make sense in time.
Devastated and gutted for your family. Missy was and is and will always be such an inspiration for me. She somehow managed to endure so much, all the while keeping herself focussed on Ryan and on her love for others with a sick child, too. Her spirit was so generous and selfless. We are just aching for your family and will continue to fight cancer and honor your dear MIssy, and your little boy, Ryan.
Dear Les,

I haven't forgot the mass cards for you (Missy, Ryan). I am trying to choose which one to use for Ryan. Also I have had 2 Migranies since the passing. And i am wondering if i will be able to continue getting news on how you all are without Missy, Ryan.

Hopefully The Wake And The Furnal Was A Bit Of Happy Times. But I Know It Hurt To See Them Together In Each Casket. Hopefully Ryan Had A Smile On His Face. Along With Missy. I Am Sorry That I Wasn't Able To Be There With You During The 2 Days. But Please Know I Wanted To Be With All My Love.

I Do Hope You Will Continue With The Site. Please Know This I Have Always Prayed For The Whole Family. I Wished I Got To Meet Missy, Ryan, You, Heidi And Will. But I Never Got To. So I Will Try To Send A Picture Of Me Sometime Soon.

Love As A Friend Forever. And With All My Prayers To You, I Also Love You As A Friend. Thanks For Talking To Me That One Night.

Danny Quinn
My heart breaks for you,and your family. May God comfort you in your time of sorrow. Missy and Ryan are together in heaven now and no longer in pain. God bless all of you.
Karen Bedford Smith
I just heard about Ryan and Missy this evening. I cannot believe it. My thoughts are with you, Heidi, and Will. Ryan and Missy were such good people--they will be missed.

Matt Pattillo
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