The Ryan Man: Father to compete in triathlon in honor of his son
JACKSON, MS (WLBT) -
A Madison man is finishing the race before it even starts.
A special triathlon will be held this weekend at Reunion in Madison County.
Austin LaSource's passion in life is his wife, Lauren, his son, Ryan, and triathlons.
19-month-old Ryan was diagnosed with AML Leukemia when he was just five months old, but he's never missed one of his daddy's events.
"He actually came to a half Iron Man I did in New Orleans when he was a few months old. He's always seen me do local races. He loves it," Austin told us.
His wife, Lauren, said, "Ryan absolutely loves his daddy. Anytime Ryan sees somebody running or biking, he says 'Bike'! Or if he sees them running, he'll clap so big!"
When Ryan was in treatment and went through remission, Austin said he stopped doing triathlons during that time because they were in the hospital so much.
"The guys that I train with, we had all decided when Iron Man Chattanooga was announced, we all had the opportunity to sign up for it and race it together. That's what we were going to do," said Austin.
But Ryan relapsed this month and now awaits a bone marrow transplant, so Austin's triathlon group decided to turn the Iron Man into -- "The Ryan Man".
Austin told us, "This race I'm doing on Sunday is in honor of him."
This time the LaSource family says they know they're facing more rounds of chemo, potentially, and then a bone marrow transplant.
"That's a much larger undertaking that we don't know that much about. He's so young and it's really scary. We're ready to dig in and do whatever it takes," Lauren said.
And Ryan and Lauren will be there, even though just reading about his daddy's adventures seems to tucker little Ryan out.
Laurens said, "He has so many prayers covering him and I know God knows all about his little self."
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