Ryan - Our Inspiration : Gibbie Stories

"I Just Call Them Gibbie"
by: Scott "Hook" Harmeling

So many people aspire to do so many things in this world everyday. While the vast majority of these people work just to make money, a small few work to help their fellow man. Some people call these persons philanthropists or social workers or even doctors, but I call them, well, Gibbie.

Let me take a moment to clarify what I just said. The old saying is that you should grow up to be a doctor or a lawyer, or any other profession that makes a lot of money. However, this is not true for the Gibbies in the world. I use the singular (Gibbie) above, because I only know one. We all can say we are unique in some way or another. We all want to believe that we are complex and no one really can figure us out, but not Gibbie. He was not complex. He was not caught up in this rapid paced world, instead he carried on his life is a slow methodical manor. He was a very intelligent, benevolent soul that loved people. I know this well, as not only was he one of my best friends, he was also my biggest fan.

The day before his death, Gibbie's pastor flew down from Fayetteville, AR to help comfort the family and lend his helping hand. Upon his arrival we all gathered to say a group prayer to help calm our nerves. I especially needed some help from him as I found my faith being challenged more than it had ever been before. His pastor shared with me many thoughts that I still carry today, but one in particular stood out to me. I will try and paraphrase what he said. He said many people who think of a 25 year-old who has died, immediately think of the tragedy, which it is. Most people are saddened because they feel he did not live a full life. Ryan Gibson did.

Indeed he did. How many of you have been thanked for introducing a friend of yours to someone else? This was a frequent occurrence for me. How many of us can say that we touched as many people as he did? How many of us would have over 750 people at our funeral? How many of us can say that a person touched our lives so much that 33 of his brothers from 7 states would come to pay their respects? I can't.

Ryan Gibson thought that the first round of his battle with Leukemia was his sign from God that he was to become an oncologist. He was so convinced of this he believed he was going to cure it. I believed him too. Now what we have left is what I would term an incredible extended family that has one goal, which is the same common goal that Gibbie had. This is why we have set up The Ryan Gibson Foundation.

It is no wonder to anyone who knew him well why God wanted Gibbie. Maybe we were all being too selfish to think we could keep a man like him with us. God just had a better place for him to be. So I say to my friend and my brother. I Love You Gibbie and I will see you soon.


The Ryan Gibson Foundation - 300 San Jacinto St. Dallas, TX 75204