View Full Version : Ryan Parker Chicago Player -

08-03-2004, 08:54 PM
I thought that I would forward this to all that knew or might have known Ryan. He was an excellent pool player and a real loss to the Chicagoland pool community. He will be sadly missed.
Eydie Romano
Waubonsie Valley grad dies after falling from el train platform

Family, friends remember a kind-hearted, fun-loving young man

By Angela Fornelli

NAPERVILLE It was just a week ago when Dianna Parker was talking to a friend about the dangers of Chicago's el train platform, and how there are "no rails to protect people from falling."

On Monday afternoon, Parker sat in her Naperville living room, clutching her son's well-worn Cubs hat and trying to come to terms with the irony of that recent conversation.

Her son, Ryan Parker, 25, died Sunday evening on his way home after the Cubs game when he fell off the el platform near the Addison stop and was electrocuted. Parker came into contact with the third rail, which carries electricity to the trains.

Carly Houston of Aurora, his girlfriend of five years, jumped down onto the tracks after Parker fell and tried to resuscitate him with CPR.

"We were at a rooftop party and he loved the view," said Houston. "It was so perfect; he was so happy."

On Monday, Houston joined other friends and family members in Dianna Parker's home to remember Ryan, who was described as a fun-loving young man with a big heart and contagious laugh.

As a lifelong Cubs fan from Naperville, Parker said her son, who lived with her, enjoyed watching his favorite baseball team with friends.

After the game on Sunday, the group went to a bar in Wrigleyville, where Parker enjoyed another of his passions dancing.

"He was an awesome dancer," Houston said. "He was always the life of the party."

"He'd laugh and you had no choice but to smile," added Chad Cavanaugh of Naperville, one of Parker's friends.

Parker graduated in 1996 from Waubonsie Valley High School in Aurora, where he was a pitcher for the baseball team.

He then worked for the laborers union and received his associate degree from the College of DuPage. He was planning to attend Aurora University this fall to work toward a degree in business.

Baseball wasn't the only sport Parker loved. He was also a champion pool player, his mother said. He was the Midwest champion in 2002 and came in eighth place in Illinois this year.

And with the money he won from pool tournaments, she said her son was planning a party for those he cared for most his family, friends and girlfriend.

"He didn't have a lot to give, but when he had something to give, he gave it all," his mother said as she clung to the Cubs hat that he was wearing when he died.

Houston picked up the hat, ran her finger across the dirt on the inside. During the Cubs game just hours before the accident, she said he mentioned how dirty that hat was.

"He said his grandma used to clean his hats for him when he was little with a toothbrush," she said. "I was going to clean it for him."

Visitation Thursday 4 to 10 at
Dieterle Funeral Home
1120 S. Broadway (Rt 25)
Aurora, IL 630-897-1196