Meet the Hirns
A few words from each of us...
Ryan was my son. I miss him every day. He was so fun-loving and full of life. I think working with young burn survivors has helped me to stay in touch with him in my life. I see their spirit and it reminds me that he is still alive and working in my life.
The automobile fire (2001) that took the life of our 7-year-old son, Ryan, left my husband, our 2-year-old son, Tyler, and me with burns to over 25% of our bodies.
In his memory, we have created Ryan Shines Burn Foundation to help support pediatric burn survivors with educational opportunities, "burn camp" scholarships, and to provide tangible resources for their families as they rebuild their lives; and to create a support network for the mental and emotional health of Firefighters.
It is my hope and my belief that Ryan will Shine forever in the hearts, minds, and lives of others.
I was there in the backseat of that burning car beside Ryan when he died. I was the lucky one, my dad was able to pull me out. Even though I was too young to remember much of it, I still feel the deep bond that exists between brothers. And, at the same time, I feel a bond with other burn survivors also. Part of my responsibility in my brother's Foundation is to record our experiences during our Catching Courage events and transform them into everyday stories we can share with others.
Ryan died before I was born. I know him as my brother through celebrating his birthday every year, and through our family memories and videos. They have helped me understand some of the grief that my family went through. It has helped me appreciate the courageous struggles of all families that have been hurt by fire. I have discovered that it touches even those who were not burned.
I like to help my family with all the Ryan Shines events. They are a lot of fun. I love meeting all kinds of new people from all over the country and get to go on some cool adventures together.