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Ryan’s musical tribute to his mum

Ryan’s musical tribute to his mum

28 November 2012

Determined to do whatever he can to raise money for research into pancreatic cancer after his mother’s death earlier this year, Leeds singer Ryan Boyle has combined his love of music with fundraising to organise an evening of entertainment – including an X-Factor-style competition - in his mum’s favourite social club on 30 November.

Ryan’s mother, Mena Byrne, had successfully come through a stomach operation in March, but chest pains in the following days led to an MRI scan that revealed she was also suffering from pancreatic cancer, which had spread to her liver. Mena began a course of chemotherapy and fulfilled her wish of marrying her long-term partner, Paul Egan, on 8 July, but passed away on 13 July at home, aged 54.

“She wasn’t just my mum, she was my best friend,” says Ryan. “If mum had a pound in her pocket she would give it to you – she’d do anything for anybody.” Mena was the youngest of 11 children, the family originating from Dundalk in the Irish Republic. “Mum was very independent and strong,” says Ryan. “She also loved a sing-song but didn’t like the spotlight – unlike me!”

Ryan has been performing since the age of 6, singing and acting in Leeds theatres. “Mum loved hearing me sing and I always knew that I wanted a career in the entertainment industry,” he says. To boost his fundraising, Ryan has recorded a CD of Mena’s favourite songs. Called ‘A Mother’s Love’, it’s Ryan’s tribute to her: “All I want is for people to have a good quality of life and not to have to go through what I did, watching my beautiful mum fade away.” Ryan hopes to raise awareness as well as money through sales of the CD and has been tirelessly promoting his efforts through his local newspapers:

“This is only the beginning of my journey; I won’t give up fighting until we beat this disease. I have a voice to sell records and a big personality that I intend to use to raise as much money as possible. ‘Never give up believing in yourself’ is what my mum always said to me and I won’t stop until I’ve made a difference.”

To support Ryan’s fundraising, please visit

You can hear a preview of Ryan’s CD at

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