Licking Valley basketball alum, Marine dies in crash at 33 – Car Accident
Loved ones are remembering the life of a Newark native after he was killed in a crash in California last week.
According to a GoFundMe page established to benefit his family, 33-year-old Cody Ryan died Saturday in a crash.
Ryan was a 2007 graduate of Licking Valley High School and according to the school’s basketball team, a standout basketball player for the district.
His obituary said he served in the United States Marines from 2008 until earlier this year. During his service, he was stationed at multiple military bases and served on multiple deployments. He also served with the Marine Corps Special Operations Command and most recently deployed to Iraq.
In a Facebook post by the Licking Valley basketball program, Ryan was described as “larger than life” and a fearless competitor. The post shared Ryan led the Panthers to a Mid-State League-Ohio Division championship in 2007 when he hit the game-winning shot with seconds remaining on the clock.
Friend and MARSOC teammate Christopher Nicol described Ryan as extremely funny, with a big personality and huge heart.
“He always had a joke. He always had a riddle. There was always a devious scheme he was up to,” Nicol said.
Nicol expressed gratitude for Ryan, who had established a fundraiser for his family when Nicol was in a bad car accident last year.
“While I was in the hospital and they had me asleep, Cody reached out to my family and he put together a fundraiser for me to help cover medical bills,” Nicol said, adding Ryan also sent birthday gifts to his daughter whose birthday was a few days following his accident.
Together, members of Ryan’s special operations team established a GoFundMe account to help his family cover the costs of his funeral, along with the immediate needs of his 4-year-old son. Funds will also go into a college fund for Ryan’s son.
As of Wednesday morning, the account had raised over $27,000 in a week.
The GoFundMe account described Ryan as a loving father and family man, in addition to former member of the Marine Raiders.
“Cody embodied the roles and responsibilities of a team member that would put the priorities of the team and team members over himself,” the account said. “Cody was the type of person who would do anything for his friends and family. He has set up and organized other fundraisers for individuals and their families in our community when they were in a time of need. It is our turn to return the favor to this man and his family.”
To make a donation to the Ryan family, visit their GoFundMe account.
According to his obituary, there will be a private family viewing with cremation to follow.
In a recent Facebook post, Ryan’s brother, Drew Ryan, said the family will also be hosting a celebration of life party at 6 p.m. Friday at 2560 W. High St. in Newark. Ryan said the event is not formal and anyone who knew Cody Ryan, heard a story about him or can relate to him are invited to the celebration.