SGT Leevon J. Ritter Bracelet
SGT Leevon J. Ritter Bracelet
My son had a story in his life and continues to inspire and have a story after his death. As a mother this is the most difficult thing to wake up every morning and know I will never hear his voice or hug his neck or hold his babies. In order to continue to give his legacy to others I will never allow him to be forgotten. I also want people to know the soldiers that we lose are usually…..
More than a soldier.
He lived life to the fullest never leaving anything on the table working hard to always be the fastest, strongest, nicest, kindest, funniest, hardest working and playing person in the room. As a mother I knew him as a baby, a toddler, a child, a teenager, and very young man. However the day he left for the Army was the day he became a man that I had to get to know all over again. He was so much more than a soldier and I have never been more proud of him than the day of his 25th birthday which was 8 months after his death. I asked his friends and family to post a memory or a story or a thought about him on facebook. Wow it was so amazing to spend the day reading these wonderful words learning this was my son and he had taken with him all the things that I worked for years to teach him and he grew into a young man I would forever be proud of. Here you will read some of the things his friends told me they would put on display to help people know him:
Sgt Leevon Ritter:
1. Star socks these are the socks he would wear to play softball. After his second deployment he was struggling with PTSD and needed to find a way to work through it so he started playing softball and man was he good. He was also very fun and funny so when he would walk onto the field in these socks no one would take him seriously… then they would see him hit and run and never doubted his ability again.
2. PV: His Varsity letters from Wrestling he was a wrestler from the time he was in 1st grade.
3. The green and blue bracelet: WDLD stands for What Did Leevon Do. Donate Life he was an organ donor by his choice and I am so proud of him. LR#1 these are his initials and the #1 was always the number on his jersey for every team he played on. We made these bracelets for the 2nd Leevon Ritter Memorial event
4. A minion: he loved to be fun and silly and loved the Minions he went to an amusement park and won 3 of them his oldest sister was so jealous when he sent her a picture.
5. Banana: When he was in 6th grade at a school field trip he won a 5ft tall banana and unbeknownst to me this banana would go to many parties and things with him during his high school days.
6. Gunner his Rottweiler: After being diagnosed with PTSD he was allowed to train his rottie as a service dog to help him cope with life Gunner was his best friend and even came to the hospital and sat on a chair next to him while he was in a comma before he was taken into organ recovery.
7. Heartbeat strip: this is the most precious thing we can have is our heartbeat these were his last ones.
8. Small jar of dirt: Dirt Road Anthem is the song that most reminds all of us of him.
9. Woodchuck Label: Woodchuck is an awesome cider that he always wanted me to try, I always told him that I didn’t like flavored beer of course he would say “it isn’t beer it is cider”. We promised when he was home for Tug Fest in August of 2012 we would drink one together. Well he never came home to share a Woodchuck with me but now it is almost all I drink and love it.
10. Angry birds: He loved angry birds not necessarily the game but just the images in fact for Halloween 2011 he and his battle buddy Josh were angry birds they had so much fun together.
11. St Louis Cardinals and Chicago bears. As an avid sports fan Leevon followed these two teams and held them dear to his heart he even painted his little Chihuahua Cooper in bears colors with a C on his side.
12. Smurf buttons from the moment Leevon was born he was our little smurf and he grew up loving the smurfs in fact a friend recorded on VHS 16 hours of smurfs for his birthday once.
13. Green piece of his bike he loved that bike and green was his fav color. I drove to Ohio during his first deployment in order to bring his bike (that he bought while in Iraq) home.
14. A couple of suggestions that I could not find but wanted to share. A mullet lol as a toddler he had a blonde mullet so cute and now a bit funny. A nurf gun him and his little sister used to have nurf gun wars (when mom wasn’t home). They would also play baseball with milk jug caps and 2 liter bottles.
15. Family pictures. His smile would light up any room he loved us so much and we loved him back. Never a minute goes by that he is not missed.
Thank you for taking a minute to get to know Leevon he was AWESOME in his life and continues to be AWESOME in his death.