Thank you for continuing to follow us on our journey as we try our best to do good in Tyler’s name. Fall is upon us and as we start to see the leaves change colors and the rain begins to fall we are reminded that nothing stays the same. While we will always have sadness in our hearts and lives as we miss Tyler so much, time does seem to change how we manage that sadness and loss.
As we move forward building a foundation born out of love for Tyler, we can’t help but be overwhelmed by the love we receive from all of you, it truly is what drives us. We wouldn’t have the energy to keep up this pace if we were trying to do this alone. Hilinski’s Hope belongs to all of us and we thank each and every one of you for your part in the creation of a foundation that, we believe, will serve the world for many generations to come.
Mark and Kym continue to have the honor of being asked to share Tyler’s story and bring mental health education, through “Behind Happy Faces” and “Step Up”, to numerous colleges and universities across the country. We are making strides in our work with the NCAA Sports Science Institute and Prevention Strategies in finalizing a complete program of mental health education and resources. We have some preliminary data which gives us hope that our program will serve to make a difference in the lives of student athletes. Our formal pilot is underway with an estimated completion date by the end of 2019 – early 2020. Visit our website to see a complete list of where we have been and where we are going!
Ryan continues to lead his team at the University of South Carolina Gamecocks as QB, focusing on his studies, and sharing a message of hope, as often as he can, with groups of students in South Carolina. The public displays of support at the football games in the SEC conference have taken our breath away and we are seeing these displays of love and support spreading across the country as many schools have joined in by holding up 3 fingers on the first play of the 3rd quarter. It is really a sight to see and we hope it continues. Two cheerleaders who also happen to be sisters, Gabby & Mariah Comeau, at the University of South Carolina started this movement and we love it! Kelly has been helping organize the business of the foundation and streamline some of our processes to run more smoothly while working on which path he will follow for his future career in medicine. Tyler’s cousins, Andrew & Aidan, in Northern California are taking an active role in advocating for mental health, both through their high school with a community-based service learning project and, across the country, as they travel for baseball and visit college campuses sharing Hilinski’s Hope mission with coaches they meet. As we update you on some of the things our family is doing, we are in awe of the movement underway to create a cultural shift in the way the world views mental health.
This Gives Us Hope
Although our collective work is far from over, we are starting to see glimpses of a future emerge embracing the health of the whole person, mind and body. This gives us hope that our contribution, with your help, will not be in vain and that Tyler’s life continues to be an instrument of good and light in this world.
With much hope, love, and kindness,