Many of you know and love this character.

I first met Ryan when I was in grade 12. Sibbs and I were strolling down the hall at lunch and Ryan was on crutches just chilling in the hall; he was new to the school. He had to come to Sarnia for surgery because he was born here originally and his coverage was in Ontario.

Sibbs and I instantly knew this guy was boss. His philosophies on life were inspiring.

Through the years, Chaps has helped me break my homebody like mentality and he and I have traveled all over the place. Currently we are relaxing in good old Fort McMurray.

Other than knowing how to have a good time and being adventurous, Chaps and I didn’t have too much in common. He was one of those crazy living on the edge skateboard, snowboard, wakeboard kind of guys. I like to think of those sports as a spectator sport.

Our big interest together: Technology. He and I went to see Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and as you can guess it, Donatello was our favorite (he’s the techie, nerdy one).
Some of you may not know this but Chaps and I went to college together. It was party time for sure but we both managed to lock it down and graduate with honors. I pursued further education and he moved back to Winnipeg getting a job with IBM.

You may think Chaps to be all about partying, living for the moment and being extreme but over the years, I have met a more reserved, laid back, take in the world kind of Chaps.

A lot of you may not know Chaps’ story but it wasn’t all rainbows and smiles growing up. Never having parents looking over him growing up, his Grandmother did her best with him. Chaps ended up in Foster homes all over the country. Mistreated and mislead, Chaps escaped the system and has been looking after himself since he was 15.

Knowing Chaps background, you would side with and understand him if he never amounted to anything but Chaps never let his past hold him down. He is truly one of those guys that beat the odds and defies the statistics. He never let people tell him he couldn’t, shouldn’t or can’t.

He may not know this but Chaps has taught me so much over the years. His “never get down on yourself, love life” mentality has been inspiring to watch in motion and I am very thankful to know him.

Currently Chaps is living in Calgary and flys to work every week for CNRL. Talking with Chaps he is full of life and loving every minute of it.

Love many, trust few, always paddle your own canoe!
– Ryan Chapman.