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  • Writer's pictureJen Chappell

Share Your Story Tuesday- Rylen Quinn Cowan

Rylen Quinn Cowan became an angel on June 5, 2017 at the age of 13.5 months old after a week long battle to Bacterial Meningitis. Though his life was short, he was a hero to so many as he was able to save 5 lives after donating his heart, liver, kidneys, and intestine. Rylen was always smiling and quickly earned the nickname: Smilin' Rylen. We also remember Rylen with everything ORANGE as this is his sign for us because its happy and you see it with each sunrise and sunset. After his passing, our hearts were aching and a grieving mom seeks to find purpose in their child's life, so we decided to start a foundation called the Smilin' Rylen Foundation where we could give back to those that helped us in our valley, and to help remember and honor Rylen. This past year was our first year as a foundation, and I'm proud to report that we had our first annual run called the Smilin' Rylen Run (April 2018), and we were able to raise over $30,000, to which we wrote a check to our 4 beneficiaries of $6,500 each. We chose to give back to Ronald McDonald House, Life-Gift, Emma's Hugs, and Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep. These highlights of our last year have really helped us to keep Rylen's Memory alive and to make sure we help families that are in similar crisis as we were. My heart is happy in knowing that Rylen's story is still unfolding. In addition, we were able to reach out to the families through letters that received Rylen's organs. Rylen's heart recipient wrote us back and our families met in Alabama this past summer (July 2018), as we all excitedly listened to Rylen's heart beat in sweet 3 year old Gannon's chest. Though my heart will forever have a piece missing, I know Rylen is proudly looking down, as we have done our best to continue his legacy here on Earth. Until we meet again, sweet Smilin' Rylen, you'll forever be in our hearts! We love and miss you! ***If you want to follow us on facebook, we have a page called: the Smilin' Rylen Foundation. We are located in Katy, Texas... and we are looking forward to another successful Foundation year as we raise more money to give back to our community with another Smilin' Rylen Run on April 27th, 2019. Love to all you sweet moms who have sweet angels playing with Rylen in Heaven. Kristen Cowan

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