Mizzou Brothers Rally Behind Basketball Coach’s Daughter Fighting Pediatric Cancer

(All background information concerning Rhyan and her family is credited to the RallyforRhyan Facebook page.)

For any outsider looking in on five-year-old Rhyan Loos and her family, they would see the picture of happiness and love. New to the Columbia, Mo. area, Rhyan’s father, Brad Loos, serves as the assistant men’s basketball coach at the University of Missouri (Mizzou).

Rhyan, a fanatic of anything pink or purple, has always been the social butterfly, so when it came time to start kindergarten, her parents were not concerned.  After the first week, though, Brad and his wife, Jen, started to notice a change in their little girl.  She had become sluggish and developed a limp.

Following several doctors’ appointments and many tests, Rhyan’s family was given the news: Rhyan had been diagnosed with an aggressive form of Stage 4 bone cancer.

The outpour of support for the family which followed was overwhelming.  Everything from prayers to donations came flooding through, allowing the Loos family to know they were not alone in the Mizzou community.

One such show of support that began last year was the #RallyForRhyan event at a men’s basketball game, which helped raise money for Rhyan and other children suffering from pediatric cancer.  Because of the major success, the event continued this year at the Feb. 4 home basketball game.

This time, however, the athletic department aimed to make it bigger and better, extending a call to action to the Greek community.  A contest was created between fraternities and sororities to see which organization could raise the most money.

Gamma-Kappa members took a step away from their normal philanthropic events to help raise money for pediatric cancer research.

Make way for Lambda Chi Alpha.

A total 600 dollars was raised for the cause through the efforts of all members of the Gamma-Kappa chapter, in the form of game packages, which included a ticket and #RallyForRhyan t-shirt.  This money was added to the overall total of the night (more than 54,000 dollars), all benefitting pediatric cancer research.

For High Alpha Sean Vogt and his brothers, the joy of the night came from knowing that they could make a difference.

“I think everyone had a great time, and it’s nice to get out and fundraise outside of Watermelon Bust,” said Vogt.  “We do a lot for Feeding America, but I want them [chapter members] to take away that our philanthropic efforts aren’t just confined to Watermelon Bust; we should be doing stuff throughout the year to help causes like pediatric cancer research.”

The success of the night was not only enjoyed by Lambda Chi members and other students across the campus, but alumni far and wide felt a connection to Rhyan’s battle, as well.

I’m proud that the undergraduates contributed to the $54,000 raised for pediatric cancer research,” said Neil Stanglein (Gamma-Kappa, 1408), Director of Annual Giving & Communications Programs of the Educational Foundation at Lambda Chi Alpha headquarters.  “Their involvement is a testament to Service and Stewardship, part of our seven core values – helping Rhyan battle cancer and advancing pediatric cancer research so other  children will not have to go through the same thing.”

To make the night even better for all Lambda Chi members, the Tigers pulled off their first SEC win of the season.

Rally for Rhyan is just getting started, and the men of Lambda Chi plan to show their support every step of the way.

“It is a great story on a campus that hasn’t had much to cheer about lately,” said Vogt.