Who: Christopher Ryan Bone had an infectious smile and a soul that illuminated rooms, said his mother, Georgia Ann Kristunas Bone of Exeter. He impacted everyone he met and lived to serve others, no matter what. He worked as a welder and a dealer at a casino, where he enjoyed the excitement of the job and people-watching. But Bone also had a generous heart, gifting his mother a welded rose that reminds her of his love, and taking his $1,500 in casino tips and using it to pay someone else’s rent. Wanting to do more with his life, though, and stay true to himself, Bone picked up other jobs, including working as a personal trainer, and enrolled at Temple University. Bone, who had dyslexia, loved studying digital marketing and hoped to open a yoga wellness center with his mother.
Since Bone’s accidental death last March at 25, his parents opened a yoga studio at Sapphire Salon in Pittston, where longtime friends Angie and Larry Morgan welcomed them to help fulfill his dreams. Bone’s mother became certified in Yoga of 12-Step Recovery and plans to soon start Y12SR weekly classes at the studio in his memory. Additionally, Bone’s family — which also includes his father, Patrick Sean Bone, and brother, Patrick Joseph Bone — established the Christopher Ryan Bone Memorial Fund last year. The fund recently covered rent for a man staying at Shane’s House, a sober living facility at Little Creek Lodge in Lake Ariel, where Bone’s brother works.
What/when/where: The fund will celebrate Bone’s life and legacy with a Mardi Gras-style Night at the Races fundraiser Saturday, Feb. 15, from 6 to 10 p.m. at Immaculate Conception Church, 601 Luzerne Ave., West Pittston. While the event has sold out, the community can still get involved by buying horses; donating raffle baskets, food or money; buying T-shirts or sponsoring the race.
Why: The fund hopes to donate the money it raises to Little Creek Foundation, a nonprofit that helps people achieve sobriety, in the hope of covering the cost of treatment for male residents or allocating the money to cover sober living at Shane’s House.
In her own words: “There are no words that can accurately describe what this means to us. How do you ever understand the death of your child? Love is the only answer. Although he is invisible to the naked eye, his soul is so present. Acceptance is key, knowing his soul will illuminate forever. … We feel so loved and blessed by our community with their friendship and support. We are so touched by all of the everyday blessings. This experience has humbled us and gifted us a new appreciation of the gift of life itself. … With the passing of each day, we sometimes forget ourselves that he really has passed on. God is our source of strength. He is making sure our son is never forgotten. We continue to walk by faith as each day passes, not by sight. When we close our eyes we can feel our son, and there are no words to express the amount of love and gratitude we feel each day despite this tragedy. We want to continue to make a difference in remembrance of our golden boy. Our son died accidentally and tragically, and we want to help so maybe another parent will not have to go through what we did.” — Georgia Ann Kristunas Bone
Caitlin Heaney West is the content editor for Access NEPA and oversees the Early Access blog in addition to working as a copy editor and staff writer for The Times-Tribune. An award-winning journalist, she is a summa cum laude graduate of Shippensburg University and also earned a master’s degree from Marywood University. Caitlin joined the Times-Shamrock family in 2009 and lives in Scranton. Contact: email@example.com; 570-348-9100 x5107; or @cheaneywest