Willmar Man Loses Brother and Sister-in-Law on MH17, Urges Forgiveness

Updated: 07/21/2014 7:20 AM
Created: 07/20/2014 10:10 PM
By: Tim Sherno

For Drew Ryder of Willmar, last Thursday was a typical day.

"I was in my office Thursday morning just doing my thing," he said. "Just a normal day at the office."

Ryder says he began to notice news of passenger airliner that had crashed in Ukraine and said it was "tragic" but didn't think much more about it.

Moments later, Ryder says his uncle called from Amsterdam "totally distraught" saying he had terrible news: Ryder's brother, Arjen, and sister-in-law, Yvonne, were on Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 that had crashed in eastern Ukraine.  

Ryder says the news has been difficult to process.

"How could something like this on the other side of the world be impacting me personally?" he asked.

As the day wore on and in days since, evidence is growing that a deliberate missile attack brought the plane down. Even so, Ryder says his faith has prevented him from participating in the hatred responsible for the attack.

"I'm actually praying for those people," he said.  First of all, we as Christians are asked to forgive those who wrong us."


Minneapolis/St. Paul

74° | 54°
  • Feels like: 69° F
  • Wind: ESE 13mph
  • Humidity: 96%