I get home from work and do my usual shower, sit on the computer for an hour and cook dinner routine. Before taking the first sip of a cold beer and diving into an ambitiously proportioned hot dog I check Twitter and Giant Bomb on the latest bullshit circling the web. Fifteen minutes later I hear the ping of a Steam message and get the news from a friend. At first I laugh it off and even after reading some of the first tweets I'm convinced that this is another one of Ryan's shenanigans. But then it starts to sink in, and it hasn't stopped sinking in for the last 24 hours. Ryan Davis is no longer with us.
Now writing that last sentence was surprisingly difficult. Sadly I've had to deal with a fair bit of death and tragedy during my life but I've never had to loose a friend. Not until not. It sounds fairly ridiculous even to myself to say that Ryan Davis was a friend of mine, but that's truly how I feel. We as the Giant Bomb community have been privileged to follow the lives of the Giant Bomb crew so closely for these past few years and for many of us years and years even before the birth of this website. Lives filled with beautiful weddings, adorable children, cyborg shoulders and durgers. And now for the first time, death.
I'm not a religious man myself so I have no comfort to take in the great beyond. I do however take great comfort in the beauty of life itself and the luck we all share in having a chance to live it. To me Ryan certainly seemed like a man who let nothing get in the way of his enjoyment of life. He did things in his own way and was not afraid to voice his own opinions. My first memories of Ryan are from the GameSpot E3 shows of 2002 and 2003, but the first vivid memory I have of him is of him and Jeff selling scwhag straight from the GS kitchen.
I always had immense respect for his honesty and felt borderline jealous of the affection and warmth he showed to everyone around him. I also take comfort in the knowledge that his last week might have very well been the best week of his life. Being surrounded by his friends, family and wife at his wedding and then spending the following week with the woman he loved the most.
On top of losing a friend, a lot of us feel like the family that is Giant Bomb is now at risk. It is clear that things will never be the same again. We don't get to hear those cheerful Tuesday announcements (I will admit that I've always found those to be hilarious since the podcast gets uploaded on Wednesdays where I live) or hear that infectious giggle. But then again things never change. There will be fewer faces until there are new faces. Videogames will continue to come out and the crew will find new and interesting ways to totally ignore talking about those videogames. And the community which has seemed so torn over the most recent console war these past months has now come together in a way which absolutely melts my heart. No other place on the internet or maybe anywhere in the world has such a vast supply of warm hearts and helping hands as Giant Bomb. I love you all for the support you have shown to Ryan, his family, his friends and other members of the community.
One of the things that helped me cope with this the best was going to work and keeping my mind off of the matter for the day just to calm down and get a fresh perspective. Jeff, Brad, Vinny, Drew, Patrick, Alex, Ian, Alexis and the rest of the GB workforce don't have the opportunity to take asylum in their work right now and I can not even begin to imagine how difficult it is to loose a friend and a colleague at the same time. I hope that you all take as long of a break from running this stupid website as you feel you have to and my thoughts are with you guys.
Thank you Ryan for some of the best laughs of my life. I will miss you.
PS: Oh, and thank you for sharing that sweet burger-patties with the bottom of your plate trick. My children shall know your name because of it.