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Ryan Michael Adams, 18, Ridgefield Resident, Eagle Scout, Colgate Student

Ryan Adams, who graduated from St. Luke's School in New Canaan, was an accomplished Boy Scout who earned the organization's highest award at age 13.
Ryan Adams, who graduated from St. Luke's School in New Canaan, was an accomplished Boy Scout who earned the organization's highest award at age 13. Photo Credit: Courtesy of St. Luke's School

RIDGEFIELD, Conn. — Ryan Michael Adams of Ridgefield died in a plane crash Sunday, Sept. 20 in Eaton, N.Y., just seven days after his 18th birthday.

Adams was born in White Plains, N.Y., on Sept. 13, 1997, and was raised in Ridgefield.

He attended Ridgefield public schools through seventh grade, then transferred to and graduated from St. Luke’s School of New Canaan.

Adams enrolled at Colgate University in Hamilton, N.Y., his mother’s alma mater, four weeks before his death.

He had been a Boy Scout since first grade and was an active member of Cub Scout Pack 124 and Boy Scout Troops 116 and 76.

Adams earned the rank of Eagle Scout in eighth grade at the age of 13, making him among the youngest Eagle Scouts in the nation. He was also elected by his fellow scouts to the Order of the Arrow, Scouting’s honor society.

Adams obtained his PADI Open Water Scuba certification in Honduras and had the opportunity to dive the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. He also obtained U.S. Sailing certifications for Keelboat, Cruising, Bareboat Cruising and Catamarans.

He played on the varsity golf team at St. Luke’s and joined the varsity squash team in his senior year, after playing three years of varsity ice hockey.

Also at St. Luke’s, Adams was the founder and president of the Support our Soldiers Club and the vice president of the Investment Club. He played the piano and trumpet.

Adams had planned to double major in economics and international relations at Colgate. At St. Luke’s, he did his senior thesis on identifying a correlation between U.S. economic factors and those of developed market economies, and he created a model to predict the growth of developing and emerging markets, which earned him a STEM distinction.

He was a Connecticut Boys’ State delegate in June 2014, sponsored by Ridgefield American Legion Post 78, and was elected Boys’ State Treasurer and received the Stempick Award.

Adams was a member of St. Mary Parish, where he taught a first-grade religious education class with his mother and sister for two years. He was also an ordained Eucharistic Minister, taking Holy Communion to the homebound.

He is survived by his parents Mary Lou Hanney and John Adams; his sister Kelly Adams; his maternal grandmother, Elizabeth (Chema) Hanney; paternal grandmother, Dorothy Adams of Rye, N.H.; his aunt and Godmother, Colleen Hanney Cunney of White Plains; his uncle and Godfather Kevin Hanney of Ponte Vedra, Fla.; his uncles Michael Hanney of Huntington, N.Y., Robert Adams of Greenlawn, N.Y., James Adams of Andover, Mass., and their spouses; and many cousins and friends.

He was predeceased by his grandfathers John (Jack) Hanney and James Adams.

Calling hours will be Friday, Sept. 25, from 4 to 9 p.m. at Kane Funeral Home, 24 Catoonah St., Ridgefield. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Saturday, Sept. 26, at 11 a.m. in St. Mary’s Church, 55 Catoonah St., Ridgefield.

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