In Memory of Ryan Job
Retired Navy SEAL
Camp Patriot's National Spokesman
Heaven Bound September 24, 2009
We are saddened to announce that Ryan Job succumbed to complications from recent surgery. He lived a significant 28 1/2 years from March 11, 1981 - September 24, 2009
Please pray for Ryan's wife Kelly, mother Debi, father Eric, sister Kelsie, brother Aaron, Ryan's grandmother and other relatives who are grieving. Also pray for those who had the privilege to know and work with Ryan on the SEAL TEAMS and in his life after retiring.
You may read testimonies about Ryan following this picture:
Ryan was a Born Again Christian who loved Jesus Christ and wanted to serve Him for the rest of his life. Ryan now is with his Lord and Master, he has regained his sight and awaits his wife and family who love Jesus to join him for eternity.
Ryan was Camp Patriot's National Spokesman. He was filled with enthusiasm about life even though he had given his sight during the fight against terrorism in Iraq.
Ryan was a decorated and revered Navy SEAL. He was wounded while deployed in Iraq with his SEAL Team in 2006. Ryan suffered total sight loss when a sniper's round hit the butt of his machine gun, sending shrapnel through his right eye severing his olfactory nerve and left optic nerve. Ryan underwent what was to be his final major surgery this past week. Complications that we are not totally aware of took his life after the surgery in Phoenix AZ.
After retiring, Ryan summited Mt Rainier in 2008, bagged a magnificent elk in 2008 and returned to help other injured veterans to climb Mt Rainier in 2009. Ryan gave of himself selflessly both in military service and in private life. He is one of those few individuals you meet in life that is irreplaceable.
God bless you Ryan and thank you for your service to America and Freedom around the world. You will be missed and this world is a lesser place since you went home to be with the Lord. However, we rejoice in your life and your being in the presence of God the Creator forever more. We that remain are anxious for the coming of Jesus Christ that we may again hold you as our brother in Christ.
Board of Directors
Micah Clark, Pat Kenny, Mike Flood, Jeff Lembke, Dave Courson, Bill Clark
The Following Remembrances Are Also Offered In Ryan's Honor:
Ryan was the Navy SEAL's Ironbody of the Month one year ago in September 2008 - a hero, an inspiration and a friend:
Ryan leaves behind a grateful nation, his fellow SEALs, his mother, father, sister, brother and his wife Kelly who is three months pregnant with their first child. Please visit this site to view the SEAL's tribute to him:
The Sheriffs of Ramadi also have various personal memories of Ryan:
The following incidents are recounted in the books of the Sheriffs of Ramadi and SEALs - The US Navy Elite Fighting Force that served in Ramadi Iraq.
Ryan completed BUDS Training and was assigned to SEAL Team 3. He deployed to Iraq in April 2006.
On the morning of August 2, 2006 while on a roof top in Ar. Ramadi, Iraq, a snipers bullet tore into Ryan's face. Ryan's SEAL teammates told me that upon seeing the wound they were sure that it was mortal. Ryan himself told me that if it were not for his training and his fellow SEALs who cared for him, he would have died that day.
The fighting was so intense that a helicopter could not be used to evacuate him. Ryan would have to be moved from the roof to an awaiting Bradley Fighting Vehicle on the ground. As his friends worked to save his life, Ryan regained consciousness, told them that he was OK ( The Arizona Republic Website ), then as if raising from the dead he stood up and evacuated himself while his fellow SEALs covered him as they shot their way to the awaiting Bradley. Sadly, later that day, Navy SEAL Marc Lee, Ryan's friend and one of his SEAL teammates who helped to shuttle Ryan to safety was shot and killed pursuing the enemy that shot Ryan.
Several weeks later while in the hospital back in Bethesda. Ryan learned of the death of his friend Marc Lee and of another SEAL brother Michael Monsoor, who was killed several weeks later on another rooftop in Ramadi. Ryan would also learn the devastating news that he would never regain his sight.
I met Ryan after the injury that left him blind. He was going to college, swimming and weight training. He had plans to hike mountains, do triathlons and continue doing the things that he loved, including hunting. Ryan was great at being blind. He never complained, never made excuses. In a strange way he made his blindness an adventure that we both participated in.
We would run, cycle and hike together and nobody knew he was blind. We pushed each other, he was a great training partner. In July of 2008 Ryan traveled to Washington to climb the 14,411 Mount Rainier with a group from Camp Patriot.
I read a description of the climb to him which stated that 50% of the climbers that attempt to reach the summit don't make it. Ryan told me then he would be in the other 50%. Sure enough on July 10, 2008, Ryan stood on the rooftop of Mount Rainier, less than 2 years after he cheated death on a rooftop in Iraq. You can read an account of the climb at the following link:
A few months later Ryan was traveling again, this time he was off to Idaho to go Elk hunting. In the car on the way to the airport, I pointed out that he was blind and that in most cases hunting required seeing the prey. He told me that he had that figured out and asked me how I like my Elk, ground or in chops. Two days later he called me to let me know he bagged a 980 pound giant Elk.
This made him a living legend in my book. He told me that his blindness was an advantage as both the Elk and Rainier underestimated him. I never did. See the evidence here:
My Lesson: Where there is a will, there is a way.
PS. I recently finished the last of my Elk burger.
The Sentinels of Freedom
Ryan (was invited) by the Sentinels of Freedom to earn his Bachelors Degree. Ryan was determined not to let them down - he was going to graduate with a 4.0 GPA. This is a difficult task for any person let alone a blind man, and it was made near impossible by the fact that Ryan could not sleep. There were months where he slept only a few hours a week.
On the Sunday before he died, Ryan and his wife Kelly sat together and they posted his last assignment. He earned his Bachelors degree, with a GPA of 4.0.
My Lesson: Perfection requires perfect persistance.
The Metals In His Closet
One time I was helping Ryan find something in his closet and I came across his Bronze Star and other medals. He never told me of them, I pull them down and as I read the words aloud of his deeds in an alley one day in Iraq. I knew that I was in the presence of greatness. I asked him; Were you afraid?
He told me that the reason why he did what he did was because he did not want to let his team down. He was more afraid to let them down than to be killed by the enemy. I think that Ryan was afraid, but he did it anyway. He did it because he loved the guys that he trained and fought with and this love gave him courage to face anything. Ryan's deeds in that alley were not to earn a piece of metal, they were to earn the love and respect of his fellow SEALs.
My Lesson: There is no greater love than to give of yourself to the ones that you love.
The Character Formula
A few nights before Ryan died he told his wife Kelly that his priorities were:
# 1. His Lord and Savior
# 2. Her, his wife, and
# 3. His family and friends
Ryan's priorities formed his choices and his choices created his Character. This is the formula for creating a strong Character. This was his last precious gift to me.
My Lesson: Now I understand why #1 must be #1.
When he has tested me, I will come forth as gold
The Golden Trident is issued to each Navy SEAL upon graduation from BUDS.
This Golden Trident is the most valued possession of every Navy SEAL.
Ryan and I would often talk about the Book of Job and how ironic it was that his name was Job. When things got tough, I would tell him; "Relax, it's just another test", then I would quote my favorite Job verse; 23:10:
"But he knows the way that I take: when he tests me, I shall come forth as gold."
At the end of his funeral his fellow SEALs walked up to his wooden casket, two at a time, side by side, each with their Golden Trident in hand. They placed this most valued possession atop of the casket and with a closed fist and powerful strike they nailed their Golden Tridents into the wood.
Each bang created an echo of frustration, pain and grief that reverberated through all in attendance. When every Navy SEAL had paid his final respects the casket was covered in gold.
Ryan's loyal dog Trey and I led Ryan out of the church for the last time. As the pallbearers carried him behind us, I looked back and got a glimpse of him coming forth in gold, just like it said in the book.
My Lesson: It's all borrowed time and it's all only a test.
Ryan passed from this world far too young. He had accomplished so much in such a short time and was truly a noble soul.
I am reminded of the eulogy given by Ralph Waldo Emerson of his friend, hero and inspiration Henry David Thoreau. Thoreau's, like Ryan's sudden death at a young age came as a shock to everyone. The last paragraph of his eulogy can only be spoken about a rare few great people in this world, Ryan Job was one of them.
"The country knows not yet, or in the least part, how great a son it has lost. It seems an injury that he should leave in the midst of his broken task which none else can finish, a kind of indignity to so noble a soul that he should depart out of Nature before yet he has been really shown to his peers for what he is. But he, at least, is content. His soul was made for the noblest society; he had in a short life exhausted the capabilities of this world; wherever there is knowledge, wherever there is virtue, wherever there is beauty, he will find a home."