March 16, 1965 ~ November 17, 2022

Born in: Covina, CA
Resided in: Asheville, NC

Long-time radio personality/sports talk show host Patrick Lynch Ryan passed away at his home in West Asheville Nov. 17, 2022. He was 57.

Born in Covina, California, Pat grew up in Santa Barbara, graduated from Chico State University, and relocated to Brevard, NC in 1990 to join his parents.

One of Pat’s first jobs in WNC was with Ameri-Quipt, a medical supply company, where he delivered and picked up convalescent supplies. He was compassionate and very skilled in connecting with people during some of the most difficult times in their lives.

Pat’s long-running professional career in broadcasting began in 1991 with WPNF Radio (now White Squirrel Radio WSQL) in Brevard, where he was elevated to operations manager in 1993. In 1996 Pat made the move to television, working in promotions for WLOS-TV, the ABC affiliate in Asheville. During that time, he also hosted a weekend sports talk show on 880 WTZY.

In 2002, Pat started hosting the morning show on Asheville’s WOXL-FM, Oldies 96.5. He eventually took on duties of launching Asheville’s only daily local sports talk show, “The WISE Guys” on WISE in 2005. Pat gave voice to local high school and college coaches, and loved spotlighting the achievement of their athletes. He went beyond football and basketball to make sure soccer, baseball, lacrosse, track, and more got covered. He not only offered the microphone to local, student, and amateur athletes, but also to coaches and small business owners, as well as nonprofit organizations. He was a frequent emcee at events to make our community better.

Pat’s talent and passion for music transcended beyond radio. As a Rush aficionado, and huge Geddy Lee fan, he took up bass in high school playing in various bands until as recently as September of 2022. He was a founding member of several local WNC bands including Gigolo Moon, Sister Moon, and most recently The 96.5 / Rewind House Band, which he played in for 21 years. He loved entertaining crowds big or small and cherished his moments on the big stages opening for touring acts such as Kansas, The Temptations, The Beach Boys, Gary Puckett and others. While never playing for accolades, he did enjoy the occasional compliment from fellow musicians. One of his favorites that he loved to share, “Damn, you gave us a run for our money!”, said to him by one of the Temptations as he walked off stage. He played simply for his love of music and entertainment, and his big personality lit up every stage he set foot on.

He is survived by his devoted partner-in-fun, best friend, and equally fiery redheaded wife, Kathleen Cook, and his brother Robert Ryan of Jacksonville, Florida. He was preceded in death by his parents, Robert X. Ryan and Peg Ryan, his beloved aunt Patsy Evers, and his sister, Mary Jane Ryan.

A Celebration of Life Event for Pat Ryan will be announced at a later date.

Because Pat was such a champion of local athletes, in lieu of flowers please consider a donation to the Mountain Amateur Athletic Club, which provides scholarships. The address is P.O. Box 5272, Asheville NC 28813.


Funeral Home Assisting The Family:

Groce Funeral Home - Patton Ave.
1401 Patton Ave.
Asheville, NC 28806


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  1. What a perfect photo of Pat. His enthusiasm and joy for life are unmatched and I am going to miss him terribly. He lived through a challenge that most of us could never pull off with so much grace, humor, and strength because that’s how he lived his life too. You’ll always be my brother, Pat, and I will see you again with much delight and joy on the other side. I know you would want us to enjoy our lives to the fullest and also to watch out for and support the love of your life, so Kathleen, I am here for you and praying for comfort for all who love Pat.

  2. Never met the guy, but I could tell he was my friend. His personality came through clearly on the airwaves. Being a diehard WISE listener, I will greatly miss his wonderful positivity, humor, and enthusiasm. Just listened to the tribute show and heard The Spirit of Radio at the end. That’s Pat right there. He never backed off his love of Rush, even though he got ribbed for it. I’m the same, I love me some Rush. Godspeed, brother.

  3. Pat and Kathleen were the ultimate couple. Every time I look at his picture on my telephone, I cry. What a man! Always kind, no matter what. An inspiration to me and all the staff at Messino Cancer Centers. My heart is broken for myself and for Kathleen.

  4. We loved the energy of this guy and his strength in a long hard battle. Kathleen, you were phenomenal in keeping life full and joyful. We will all miss him. They don’t make many like him. Love, Doris and Larry

  5. Kathleen, you were phenomenal in keeping life full and joyful. We will all miss him. They don’t make many like him. Love, Doris and Larry

  6. Life will never be the same for us. Patrick was the highlight of my life. He called me M2,
    because his mother and I shared he same month and day birthdays….. he always made
    me laugh and feel so loved. Kathleen is one phenomenal woman. Thanks for all that you gave to Pat.

  7. I always enjoyed assisting Pat for many years at the bank. He was one of my favorite customers. My husband and I loved to see him and his band play when we were able to make it. He always cheered us up at the bank if we were having a bad day. It was great to know Pat for the years I did. My condolences to his wife and family. Pat was a really good person.


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