Community uniting in ‘Ryker’s Ramp-A-Palooza’ and more for little boy with muscular dystrophy

SUSSEX COUNTY — A caring community will unite next weekend in a home makeover for a Western Sussex family impacted by the heartbreak of muscular dystrophy.

6 RYKER brooke aaron and ryker

Ryker Lyons with parents Brooke and Aaron Lyons at Saturday’s Special Olympics competition at the University of Delaware.

Area businesses are partnering with the Good Ole Boy Foundation in a monster volunteer effort designed to provide some daily joy for 4-year-old Ryker Lyons, his sisters Kierstin and Camber and his parents Brooke and Aaron Lyons.
Organizers have coined the makeover “Ryker’s Ramp-A-Palooza.”
Ryker, who turned 4 years old on March 26, was diagnosed with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy when he was 14 months old.
Next Friday and Saturday, volunteers plan to build a deck and ramp at the Lyons home, plus a number of extras. Various projects will have themes.
The makings of the makeover project that encompasses all family members will be showcased during the scheduled revealing April 9 after the family returns from a one-night getaway at the Francis Scott Key water park in Ocean City, Md.
“We are going to do something above and beyond just a ramp,” said Good Ole Boy Foundation co-founder Josh Wharton, adding one thrust of this mission is to build a super-cool ramp that Ryker “hopefully is going to look forward to using rather than dread.”
On a rainy day in late March of 2014, Ms. Lyons walked from her family’s Seaford home to the steps of Legislative Hall in Dover. Her 13.5-hour journey was an awareness/fundraising campaign dedicated to son, who faces a premature death sentence with Duchenne muscular dystrophy.
Typical muscle degeneration with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy results in wheelchair confinement by age 10, ventilation in teens and ultimately death in late teens or early 20’s, most likely due to heart failure.
Because of Ryker’s eventual mobility issues family travel could become a challenge.

6 RYKER ryker with Kierstin and Camber

Ryker Lyons with sisters Kierstin and Camber.

“So we want to make their backyard kind of like their little oasis, their own happy place where they can go out back and be a family and have fun,” said Mr. Wharton.
Business and organization participants in the mega-makeover include: Dukes Lumber, Phil Thompson Construction, Penuel Signs, Mid-Atlantic Electrical Services, J & A Overhead Door, Solid Image, Customized Lawn Care and the Chad Spicer Foundation.
The game plan is to begin the project Friday while the family is away on its water park getaway.
The revealing is tentatively planned for next Saturday afternoon, upon makeover completion and the family’s return from Ocean City.

News Editor Glenn Rolfe can be reached at grolfe@newszap.com

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