I have been so fortunate to hear from Kaine Allen and he has share a photo of a recent BMX reunion of the old crowd. I am happy to report you all look great and Jason Carnes kept his clothes on!! Wow could I be so old? I thank all of ya'll for remembering Ryan at the reunion. I am sure he was there in spirit!

Our wonderful friends Ron and Nena Dube are having a bench made and this plaque will be on it. Isn't it just Ryan!! They have been wonderful friends to us!

Email your memories to me at and I will post them for you. I am so excited that you are here !! 

From Clive Gosling 

I was very fortunate to be introduced to Ryan, Michelle and Farren Sheehan at a bike race in Oklahoma, November 1989 by a bunch of crazy Irish friends who made bike number plates in their bedrooms. 
I ended up in Pflugerville, living with the Sheehan family for much more than an extended holiday away from my native UK. In this time, I virtually became Ryans’ adopted brother and Michelle’s adopted son and boy did we have fun racing bikes! Most weeks we’d be racing three or four times and if we weren’t flying here and there, we were pulling Michelle’s bike shop trailer down some long freeway, having the time of our lives, listening to Ryan’s bad jokes and usually just about to run out of gas!

It’s during these times of living in each others pockets, that you really get to know people and even though we lost touch over the years, the news of Ryans’ passing brought those times and relationships back to me vividly, making me realise just how special they were. 

It’s taken me a couple of months and several attempts to write my thoughts on the sad loss of Ryan. I think I’ve found it hard as I have two young children of my own now, and it’s only when you have your own kids that you understand what it is to truly love someone, and the unconditional bond between parent and child. I spent more time with Michelle than I did with Ryan as I worked in her bike shop when Ryan was at school. We used to chat about life on the way to the bank or the shop, and I now understand through my own family, the devotion and commitment she had for hers, especially Ryan. I can only imagine what Michelle, Bob and the rest of Ryans’ family have gone through as I sit and wonder what I would do if something happened to one of mine and that just breaks my heart as I’m sure it has theirs.

Ryan Sheehan was ‘cool’, but didn’t realise how ‘cool’ he really was and that made him even ‘cooler’. He was a regular teenager, during the time that we were ‘brothering it up’, he wanted to ride his bike, meet girls, get a cool car, all the usual stuff, but he was very sensitive too, in a good way, he wasn’t soft, he was loving and affectionate to all around him and that made him unique. He was thrilled with the simplest things; when he came to stay with me in England, our speed limits and laws were quite relaxed. I remember collecting him from the airport and driving down the freeway at over 120mph and he had a grin on his face so big that you would have thought we’d just broke the land speed record! I remember Ryan sleeping in his race uniform the night before some big races, he just couldn’t wait to get up and go. He lived more in his short life than some people get to over a much longer period and for that I am truly glad.

I remember Ryan having the ability to express his emotions freely and passionately, so to try and understand how he developed this illness should make us all wary of our vulnerabilities. I would never have thought that Ryan, someone who I remember really embracing every second life had to offer, would be capable of taking his own. It is such a loss and makes me so sad that I didn’t keep in contact with him but I know that I have thought about him so much these past months that I’m sure we’ve re-connected.

Ryan Sheehan, you inspired me with your affection and made me a better person, I just didn’t realise it until now.

Mrs. Sheehan-

I just heard of Ryan's passing yesterday. I was a classmate of his and we graduated from PHS together. Our junior year, we had geometry together and he sat behind me. The teacher was absolutely ridiculous and we spent the entire year making fun of what she wore, how she spoke, how she walked, and her childlike classroom antics. He would pass notes that would make me laugh or make faces behind her back. We spent the year in that class rolling with laughter, while the rest of the class just put up with the mean teacher. 

I didn't know Ryan outside of school, but I came across his name at the doctor's office where I work, noticing one of our physicians had done orthopaedic surgery on him. I did wonder if it was him, because I didn't ever see him in the office to confirm it. I found a friend online that I had not spoken to since graduation who informed me yesterday of Ryan's passing last year. 

I found your website last night and just finished reading the page that his sister set up. What a wonderful tribute to Ryan's life you have created for everyone to visit. It exemplifies the quick-witted Ryan I knew back in high school. I'm just so heartbroken to know he endured such anguish in his later years.

Ryan will forever be remembered in my mind as the funny guy who made me laugh-especially when I wasn't supposed to. He earned the credit for making that class memorable in the same ways he made life memorable for his family and friends.


Liz Deason-Vandegrift
Georgetown, Texas 


Ryan is helping others .......................

Dearest Michelle,

Hi. I wanted to thank you again and give you some accolades for your son's bookmark!!!!

I found myself in the position the other day of trying to persuade a drug addict,
like myself, to get into treatment.

Your son's (lovely) face was a stark visual message that I believe 'put a face' on the
importance of recovery for this guy trying to save his own life.

So, thank you! and I thank your hubby and Ryan and yo' family and God - in that order - more or less.

I hope ya'll are doing well -moving along in the grieving process as best you can!

Love ya and take care,

Scott Hurley 

Kindness is Everywhere!! This young man sent to me a video tape that was made at a BMX Plus Photo shoot at Meadow Brook... I have copies if anyone would like them!! Billie was so sweet to send it.

to the sheehans
my name is billy lane and i live in allen texas. i grew up in mesquite tx right across the street from the old dallas county cycle park where i raced and also help build. i grew up watching racers like steve veltman, chris ham, marty christman, and ryan sheehan (when they were in town) just to name a few. anyway i was just looking up some old names that i remember like brad finnell and i came across ryans site and i was deeply shocked to hear that he is no longer with us and i am truly sorry. you see i was a big fan of the mcdonalds bmx racing team i remember just about everyone who rode for that team like dj jarmon, steve veltman, jason king, jamas stiber, and ryan sheehan. he was one of the most talented riders ive ever seen and it saddens my heart that ryans gone. i still have a video tape of ryan and marty and all of us in 1989 at medowbrook trails in arlington, tx right after marty won the national number one plate. if you would like the tape i would be honored to give it to you even though its about 17 years old it still looks great and you can see ryan clearly on the tape and his riding skills are out of this world i hope im not stirring up memories that sadden your beautiful family i just want to give a piece of ryan back to where he belongs so if you want the tape you can call me at 972-727-8399 or e-mail me at and i will send it to you or i would love to have your family at my house anytime the door will always be open and so will my heart.

yours truly


Marty Christman

Ryan was fond of telling you that you rode the “short bus” to school, an insult to your intelligence. Ryan was skilled at calling “shotgun”, giving him rights to ride in the front seat. I learned from Ryan that the Roadway 18-wheelers were called “Big R” in C-B radio jargon. The “ABF” on the side of ABF trucks apparently stood for “Another Big Fart”, and was equivalent to a fart, necessitating a quick move to touch your clinched fists to your forehead; otherwise, if you were the last one in the truck to complete the maneuver, you ate the fart – not something you want to do.

One year we took a road trip with our mothers and sisters to a race in New Jersey. I remember thinking that Tennessee was a great state because they sold fireworks year round, not just around New Years and the Fourth of July. Ryan was at his all time best on the C-B radio. In the midst of puberty, his voice change was not yet complete, so he took the C-B handle “Southern Belle”. In an extended exchange, Ryan used his skill with C-B radio jargon to convince the Big R in front of us that he was a lonely female trucker looking for some lovin’. Ryan had all the women in the suburban rolling as we watched Big R take the exit to meet up with Southern Belle.

It may have been on the same New Jersey trip that Ryan’s mom impressed me with her ability to recite from memory the following passage from the back of the Crest toothpaste tube: “Crest has been shown to be an effective decay preventive dentifrice that can be of significant value when used in a conscientiously applied program of oral hygiene an regular professional care.” I was so impressed that I decided to memorize the passage myself, and to this day it has stuck.

I remember another trip, this time with Dugan and Debbie Finnell as chauffeurs, going somewhere in the Midwest or maybe Colorado for a race. We were pulling the S&S trailer with a big extended cab pickup. We’d get in the bed of the pickup every now and then to get some (badly needed) fresh air or avoid JT’s Milky Way vomits. I don’t remember if it was Brad (Dugan and Debbie’s son) or Ryan who got bored with the snack food while sitting in the back of the truck, but by the time we arrived at the racetrack the entire front of the trailer was coated with gummy bears, stuck on with the force of a 65 mph wind and sugary-spit glue. Dugan was not amused, but we were.

On an infamous road trip to Tennessee with Ryan, Michelle, and the S&S trailer, I became forever indebted to the Sheehan family. Imbued with all of the invincibility and ignorance that a sixteen year old has, I introduced their Suburban to a Toyota truck on a two-lane road at 60 mph. Luckily nobody was killed. I got my sideburn stitched up at the emergency room while Ryan’s mom stood by. I felt so horrible and stupid about the incident, but Michelle was not angry. She acted like a mom to me…a very understanding mom. Everybody always knew that Ryan had a cool mom, but in the emergency room that day I realized she was much more than just cool.

Besides the many extended road trips out of state, I have a lot of memories hanging out with Ryan before races and in-between motos at Capitol City BMX and Lone Star BMX. Many weeks we’d race at Capitol City on Wednesday, Lone Star on Thursday and Saturday, and back at Capitol City on Sunday. Ryan had many friends through BMX, more than I can remember. Here is a small list: Carl Lien, Chris Kuempel, Clive Gossling, Chris Graves, Amy Graves, Marc Swinder, Kevin Gentry, Jimmy Pitts, Chris Hamm, James Pritchard, Trey Walden, Eddie Siegmund, Jason Carnes, Brad Finnell, Holly Shaw, Todd Flora, Parnell Haley. Pretty much if you raced BMX in or around Austin, Texas in the mid-eighties to early-nineties, then Ryan was probably your friend.

I spent the night at Ryan’s house a lot. I’d ride back to Austin with Ryan after the races in San Antonio, and then race at Capitol City the next day. At Ryan’s house my favorite thing to do was play Super Mario Brothers on his Nintendo. He also had a couple of jumps behind his house that we would play around on. Ryan taught me to do can-cans and other tricks. I never could get the nerve to do the no-handers and no-footers like Ryan could do.

Sometimes I would go up to Ryan’s house or Ryan would come down to our house just to hang out away from the BMX track. We'd usually meet at the Taco Cabana in San Marcos, or the prison in Kyle. We had many great times riding the trails down the street from where I lived, cruising though UT and downtown Austin, wall rides at Lizard Ditch in South Austin. One time just the two of us stopped at the abandoned water slide in South Austin off of I-35 and rode down the slide on our bikes. We went several times to an old abandoned house in Round Rock to ride an empty pool in the backyard. One of my all-time favorite rides was with Ryan at Meadowbrook in Arlington after the Grands in 1989. The jumps there were huge, twisting, with so much backside you could almost ride with your eyes closed.

I considered Ryan to be my best friend for many years. After BMX, we slowly lost touch. I will always remember him as a good-hearted and fun-loving person. I read a quote recently that went something like this: “You tell me who your friends are, and I’ll tell you who you are.” I believe that this is true, and that I am a better person for having been a friend of Ryan.

My Dearest Pflugerville Family,

It brings much sorrow to my heart to come up with something to say to you folks. It is a tragedy and 
at best something has happened that we all may learn. Unfortunately at the expense of the life of my 
friend, Ryan Sheehan. We are all hurt by this loss, and words will not convey the sympathy I feel.
Ryan and I met through his mother, Michelle while I hung out in her office years ago. I saw Ryan 
grow up, and on occasion…I’d run into him. He always had something to say. Imagine that!! 
There was always a story or another that we would laugh and laugh over. His smile was very 
contagious. As would be, between the two of us there was always some trouble to either create or avoid!

Ryan will remain in my memory for the rest of my life!
In his majestic way, God will find a way to sooth our hearts and minds. 

Gary Jerome 
Austin, Texas


I knew Ryan from seeing him at various races around Texas, but it wasn't until I joined the S&S team that we became good friends. We traveled the country from the East coast to the West coast and the Midwest in between, all in search of the prestigious ABA bike shop team title, a little fun, and a BMX dream.

When I first joined the S&S team Ryan was there to welcome me aboard and in the two years that followed he provided me with enough memories to last a lifetime. I remember my first trip with the team was to a small town in Tennessee. it was this weekend that BMX became "fun" for me again. 
Everything from bottle rocket/roman candle wars at the hotel (Eventually the police came and put a stop to the "war" that was taking place behind the
hotel.) to e-braking Michelle's rental car all over town and eventually wrecking the suburban while racing Ryan down a narrow two lane country road happened. And this was just my first weekend with Ryan and the team. 
Needless to say I couldn't wait until the next national weekend to hang out with my friend and see what kind of fun (trouble?) we could get into next.

Ryan was a good person, a great racer, and an even better friend who was always willing to lend a hand, play a practical joke or wreak havoc on a Nebraskan cornfield (Inside joke). I lost touch with Ryan through the years, but I never forgot about him, and I will forever remember him and the memories that he left with me. He will be missed.

Kevin D. Gentry
There are so many funny and nice things I remember about Ryan. The summer he had knee surgery and I came to the house everyday. I think we went to every movie released that summer. I still have the BMX Action when Marty Christman was featured in it. I keep it at the school were I teach and when I have a special kid in class I show them the magazine. Do you remember the pictures of Chris Graves with a full Mountain Dew, Ryan with a half full Mountain dew and me with a 1/4 full Mountain Dew. The kids ask who Chris and Ryan were. I tell them Chris' dad owned the track and Ryan was my best friend. I remember working in the bike shop and all the funny stuff we did and how much we cleaned our bikes. I remember driving back from Waco, it was just Ryan and me. I was knocked out in the front of the big white Suburban and Ryan was driving. He hit the breaks and yelled. I jumped out of the seat, eyes wide open and looking for something to hold on to. He laughed for probably 10 minutes. I also remember spending the night during Christmas break and sleeping with the windows opened to see the water in our cups would freeze... sorry about the electric bill. I will never forget one afternoon. The suburban was full, Ryan, Me, Todd, James P, Marty, maybe Clive and Chris. Someone threw the Big Gulp at a water truck. We hit that truck right in the middle of the windshield. Little did we know that another city truck would chase us all the way back to the bike shop. We ran and hid in the closet, house, behind the jumps, where ever we could find. You took care of us... like always. I remember going to California. WOW what a trip. Disneyland, BMX Action headquarters, Huntington Beach and Venice Beach. We had 8 or 9 of us, about a dozen bikes and one Town Car. How about the Tour de Texas? 2 weeks - 16 nights and days of racing. I wouldn't trade any of that for all the money in the world.
One of the things I miss the most about that time in our life was riding our bikes on the drag in downtown. We would ride for hours and end up all over Austin. I never had a clue where I was at the time, but Ryan always knew how to get back to the car... or at least acted like he did. Ryan was always encouraging me and everyone to do better, be faster and when you did win or make a main he was always very happy for you. 
Chris Kuempel


I am so sorry to hear of your loss, Ryan was a fine young man who always made us laugh during the auctions. We lost a nephew from Round Rock, to the war in Iraq this past summer. He left a large void in our lives. I know you are equally hurt by your loss. Words can’t convey our sympathy. I know that God has two fine young men in his presence. God bless your family and know that we will all be together again some day. Gill Equipment Co.


Dearest Family,
Hi. There are no words -
I knew Ryan very briefly, but I thought he was a very loving and kind man. My heart is with you and sweet Ryan. We must give meaning to this tragic passing! May God bless you and comfort you always.
a friend,
Scott Hurley 
Scott Hurley (Austin, TX ) 

November 3, 2005 
I think of you often so decided to find you tonight to say hello. 
I look back and smile at the good times we shared. I will always remember our trips across the coutry and our adventures on bicycles both on the track and off. 
Thank You, Michelle you are the BEST BMX Mom that ever lived, you did a great job. Ryan, myself and many others benefited from your giving and love to others.
Peace and love to the Sheehan family. 
Kelley Reece (Fort Worth, TX ) 

October 6, 2005 
We were both very shocked and saddened to hear of Ryan's passing. We are both former highschool classmates of Ryan's and have fond memories of hanging out with Ryan. After highschool my husband kept in contact with Ryan and they occasionally played golf together at Blackhawk. Our condolensces go out to the Sheehan family.

Aaron & Eilene Eckerdt 
Eilene Eckerdt (Elgin, TX ) 

October 5, 2005 
Yesterday afternoon, I, along with countless others, said goodbye to you. It was wonderful memorial service and I know you were there with all of us. While flying back to Minnesota this morning, I realized I forgot to thank you. I want to thank you for being my cousin. I know we didn’t live in the same state so we didn’t get to see each other all the time. However, every time we got together, it meant so much to me. Sitting with you, hearing stories from your latest pranks or whatever, you made me feel like I was part of everything. Truth be told, there are some stories that came out of our get-togethers some may consider trouble but I consider them treasured memories. I seem to recall we were involved in an “incident” at Nana & Pop’s house, which may have included some sort of slime-like substance & a contest to see who could get it the highest on the wall. To this day, I can’t remember who won, as our judges seemed pretty angry. There are just so many adventures, so many great times. My greatest regret is that I wasn’t there for you but I refuse to dwell on what could have been. Instead, I will be very grateful for the times we had and I will honor your memory by being there for your family. Until we see each other again, sleep well Brother. 
Peter Lippmann (Saint Louis Park, MN ) 

October 5, 2005 
Dear old friends~
I was very saddened to hear about Ryan. It's an unimaginable tragedy and Ryan's entire family is in my thoughts and prayers. Having been through this myself, I would be happy to talk to you or provide you with some helpful resources when you are ready. You were there for my family during difficult times and I would be most grateful to return the favor. With love... 
Jennifer Painter Beillon (Round Rock, TX ) 

October 5, 2005 
Michelle, Bob, Farren and family, and Ryan's family,
Jennifer called me this morning and told me about Ryan's passing. I want you and your family to know that I love you dearly and always have. No words can be said to comfort you. God is here and He will comfort and help you. Please know that my family has wonderful memories of our time together back in the 70's and 80's. God Bless all of you. Love, Jackie 
Jackie Painter (Waxahachie, TX ) 

October 5, 2005 
Words cannot express how sad we are to hear of your loss. Our deepest sympathy to you and your family. 
Frank Sughrue (Lockhart, TX ) 

October 5, 2005 
Michelle, Bob, and Families, We offer our sincere condolences. You are in our thoughts and prayers. If there is anything we can help with, please let me know. 
Mike Gandy (Austin, TX ) 

October 4, 2005 
Michelle and family ~ I wish I knew the right words to say. I just want you to know that I will be praying for the Lord to comfort you.
Kym King (Hutto, TX ) 

October 4, 2005 
Michelle, Bob, and Families. It's very hard to know what to say when a parent has to bury their child. God only knows that He never intended that to happen in His scheme of things. Some days though, He just needs to be reminded of the playful spirit of the younger people he loves so dearly, and He calls them home to be with Him. God bless your family with the understanding of His plan. Cherish your memories of Ryan, for he is smiling down upon us all. Much love to all of you. Linda Richburg Carline 
Linda Richburg Carline (Austin, TX ) 
Michelle, Bob, Farren, Betty and family, my thoughts and prayers are with you. I remember Ryan as a young man, happy-go-lucky, funny funny kid! I can see in my mind's eye Ryan out playing with Rhoady with that wonderful smile on his face. Hold on tightly to the good memories. I'm here if you need me. 
Kathy Goff (Round Rock, TX ) 

October 4, 2005 
Michelle, Maggie called me last night and told me about your son.
I am deeply sorry to hear of your loss. 
Marianne/Dan Champagne (Laporte, MN ) 

October 3, 2005 
We send our deepest sympathy to you in your time of grief. Our prayers are with you. 
Robert & Darlene DuBose 
Robert & Darlene DuBose (Elmendorf, TX ) 

October 3, 2005 
I cannot express my sympathy enough. But just to let you and your family know that you are very well thought of and constantly in our prayers. 

October 3, 2005 
My family and I are keeping you, Ryan, Michelle, Bob, Farren, and Stephanie in our thoughts and prayers. God Bless you all. 
Kathy Parker (Florence, TX ) 

October 3, 2005 
We are very sorry for your loss. You are in our thoughts. 
Darrell, Haley, And Denise Hunt (Pflugerville, TX ) 

October 3, 2005 

October 3, 2005 
What a nice young man, always so very kind and thoughtful. Our prayers are with you. Gene and Paula Allen 
Gene and Paula Allen (Kyle, TX ) 

October 3, 2005 
Our prayers are with you and your family. 
Vicki Brokaw (Round Rock, TX ) 
October 3, 2005 
Judy and I are so very sorry for Bob and Michelle's Loss. The sad news about Ryan simply was overwhelming. We have been friends with Bob and Michelle for nearly 20 years and had known Ryan since he was about 12 years old. Our thoughts and prayers are with Ryan's family and we grieve at their loss. 
Jim & Judy Brown (Baton Rouge, LA ) 

To all the extended Sheehan family, we wish you our most sincere condolences and love. Not enough can be said of our fondness of Ryan and all of you.
Your Dell friends. 
Les K (Austin, TX ) 
October 3, 2005 
I will never forget back in the day of the black, boomin’ Jimmy when we first met, weddings, Mardi Gras, Vegas, days at the lake, just hanging out, and a friendship which will forever last. I am truly thankful for the time we had with Ryan. As with all of his friends, we created many great memories together that I will always treasure. 

My thoughts and prayers are with Bob, Michelle, Farren and the rest of his family. I love you guys! 
Courtney Swenson (Austin, TX ) 

October 2, 2005 
Ryan and I raced bikes together as teens in the mid to late 80's. We traveled to many places and created memories that I will never forget. I still tell stories about things we did. He was a great friend. My thoughts and prayers are with Ryan and his family. 
Chris Kuempel (Spring, TX ) 

October 2, 2005 
The first time we met, Ryan had me laughing and after working with him for almost 15 years, he still could make me laugh. Not only was he a jokester, but a warm hearted, caring person that I trusted my children with. 
We had lots of great times together and I will cherish all those memories. I will always love him and hold a special place for him in my heart. 
Lisa Rzepniewski (Pflugerville, TX ) 

October 2, 2005 
My thoughts are with the whole family. If there is anything I can do please call. 
George Budzinski (Austin Wrecker) (Pflugerville, TX ) 

October 2, 2005 
To those who don't know me, Ryan & I were neighbors in the 80's, back when Pflugerville was mostly flat dirt. 
He, too, was a thrill seeker, and we spent plenty of time together, relishing high-speed motorcycle rides as we pushed one another to extremes. 
I remember showing Ryan how to bunny hop his bike, and no sooner it seems he was state racing competitively with a room full of trophies to substantiate his skills. I was still working on my bunny hop...
Ryan, you & your family are in my thoughts and prayers, and when I get to Heaven I've got a big hug for you, my brother.
Everyone dies but not everyone lives. You lived.
May the peace of God rest with your family on Earth as you rest in the arms of Jesus.

Bret Munk (Grover Beach, CA ) 

October 2, 2005 
Sheek - you were the crazy guy wiht no limits. You created memories for me that I couldn't of done alone. You have always been able to make me laugh, and never had brought me down. I love you Ryan and I will truly miss you. I know you will be watching over all of us. your buddy forever - nacho cheese. 
Rob Cantu (Austin, TX ) 

October 2, 2005 
WE ARE DEEPLY SADDENED BY YOUR LOSS . WE Too Know And Loved Ryan, our pray's are with you.We also know what it like to lose a son gone. if there is any thing we can do please us my know.
Love Doug @odessa Rzepniewski 
George@Odessa Rzepniewski (Euless, TX )