Alumni News

‘Recall With Understanding That Your Life is Also a Journey’- Alumnus Bill Ryan Sets Sail on Journey Through America’s Great Loop

‘Recall With Understanding That Your Life is Also a Journey’- Alumnus Bill Ryan Sets Sail on Journey Through America’s Great Loop

There are many meanings for the word “hearken”, some obvious (“listen” or “consider advice or warning”) and some for which the average person must dig a little deeper.

For Bill Ryan (current High Pi of the Pi-Beta chapter at the University of California-San Diego and Master Steward), that simple word has become his life.

Ryan and his wife, Mindy, sold their home in California recently and with those proceeds bought a boat.  When choosing the name for the boat that would now become their home away from home, Ryan says that he settled on one with Lambda Chi Alpha on his mind. The name of that boat? Hearken.

“The boat has a name and a mission that should resonate with every initiated brother,” said Ryan. “There are also life lessons that other High Pis and Advisors can point to when explaining why it’s not four years, it’s for life.”

Hearken always flies the Lambda Chi Alpha flag for brothers to see.

Hearken is a Motor Vessel that will allow Ryan and Mindy to accomplish a lifelong dream, something that only a handful of people have ever done: cruising the 6000 miles through the eastern United States and Canada to complete the route known as America’s Great Loop.

Though it will just be the two sailors aboard, Ryan brings with him years of Lambda Chi memories and a hope to inspire the young men of today.

“If those chapters [that I might come close to] or those High Pis could use this journey in any way to be motivational for undergrads about living your core values, living the open mottos, that’s important,” said Ryan.

The journey will see Ryan circumnavigate America’s Great Loop, counterclockwise, hitting such waterways as the Hudson River, the Erie Canal, and the great Mississippi River.

Throughout his travels, Ryan extends an invitation to any and all members who wish to step aboard the Hearken for an “impromptu ZAX session”.

“It’s not four years, it’s for life,” stated Ryan. “There are alumni out there like me who have been initiated for over 40 years and who are still involved with the fraternity…and still willing to go out there and make a difference, one undergrad at a time…”

Hearken will set sail on March 19 from Jacksonville. Ryan hopes that his journey is an example for all brothers to live their values and continue to strive for their goals.

“I hope you [Lambda Chi brothers] will look for our banner on the fly bridge…and recall with understanding that your life is also a journey,” said Ryan. “Make it your own and make the best of it.”

To read more about Ryan’s journey and keep track of Hearken’s journey, click here.

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