Antony Ryan Moore
March 16, 2005
An Uncle’s Tribute By Tommy Carson
Good afternoon to everyone here today. I stand here, looking at all the people in the audience, all the beautiful plants and flowers displayed here, representing those that could not attend this ceremony, and I’m just overwhelmed by the love for Ryan.
As I think back about Ryan, I don’t have many stories of him in the early years, because I lived in St. Louis and saw him mainly on holidays and on summer vacations in Houston. My strongest memory is that he was a very happy child, with two very loving parents, Linda and Jimmy that would do anything for Ryan.
So my reflections today are from the last 7 years after I moved back to Texas. These are the same years that most of you got to know and love Ryan as well. I enjoyed hearing your
stories about Ryan and your greatest memories of him.
Several years ago, I was visiting Linda, and that afternoon, Ryan, Ed, and a few others were at the nearby school playing basketball. I wondered over there for a closer look, thinking, maybe I could join them. Well let me say, I would not describe their basketball skills as the smooth flowing grace of a Michael Jordon driving the lane, or the powerful, yet controlled inside game of Shag. No I would liken it to Summo wrestlers bouncing into each other and tossing a ball against the backboard. Although my basketball skills might be better than these guys, I realized, that I would just get beat-up playing.
On another visit, I was outside practicing my short game for golf, and Ryan walked up. I asked if he played golf because it was a great sport. He laughed uncontrollably and stated: “Golf is not a sport. Sports are played by Athletics, like FOOTBALL. Golf is just a game played by old, out-of-shape men, riding around in golf carts. Well, a couple a years after that, I walked out on the back porch and found Ryan practicing his golf swing. I asked “Ryan do you play golf? If so it must be because you are now getting too OLD and OUT-OF SHAPE for football. Maybe you can come visit Elaine and I this summer for some golf. I hope you are up to it, because, Elaine and I WALK.”
Another memory gives you an idea of the true Ryan. We were watching a football game on TV, when one of the players was interviewed after the game. The player said, “we’re just trying to get some respect”. Ryan turned to me, and very strongly said: “People don’t GET respect, they EARN respect”. I was very impressed by this statement, because I totally agreed with that. I believe everyone here today would agree that Ryan truly EARNED our respect.
I’ve heard your stories about his dedication at school and work, and stories of his passion and love for his job. It gives the picture of a young man who gave his best, whether a small job or big one. I’m reminded of an interview I saw a few years ago with Mother Theresa when she was very ill. She wanted people to get involved in her work, to help others. The interviewer said that most of us would not get the opportunity or have the abilities to do great things like her. She said, “Perhaps, most people will not get the opportunity to do many great things; but everyone can do many things GREATLY with love and passion.” When you think about Ryan in his job, his support for friends, his other actions at school, it is very obvious, that Ryan took this to heart, he certainly did his best too help others with LOVE and PASSION.
Today, many are thinking about why Ryan was taken away at such a young age, before he could do so much. I don’t know why this is so; but I don’t believe that this was simply a random accident or our lives are just a collection of chance occurrences. I believe our Higher Power has plans for all. Each of us is given the things to do and the opportunities to accomplish them in our lifetime. Maybe Ryan just accomplished his tasks much faster than the rest of us.
So, let’s keep his memory alive. Let’s do as he did, work hard at whatever we try, and do it with passion. And as his cousin said, do it with those “Laughing Eyes”.
Song now playing: End of the Road