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For those who missed the live broadcast, on Tuesday of last week (July 23, 2013) — the day following the Austin Vantrease parole hearing — I was interviewed by WV MetroNew’s Hoppy Kercheval. This broadcast reaches all of West Virginia and into the surrounding states. It has a huge contingent of affiliate stations.
Here is the audio file (just click on it to listen): Hoppy Kerchavel and Ken Diviney, WV MetroNews Talkline, 07-23-13
The entire interview last just under twelve minutes.
Hoppy asked me to come on air on the days leading up to the hearing, but I pushed him off until a decision was handed down. Be it good or bad, I felt like that was the more appropriate time to talk about it. Besides, Gale Vantrease was bringing attention to the hearing with her ill-fated barrage of interviews leading up to it. I just sat back and smiled as she thought it was wise to plaster her violent, felon son all over the media.
It drew the attention to Ryan.
It provided the iconic mug shot in each distribution.
What in the hell was she thinking?
It’s clear to me where Austin Vantrease learned (or, more accurately, didn’t learn) the consequences of his actions. Some people just never learn! What an incredibly lacking sense of foresight. If it were me I’d be falling over my wife trying to apologize and make it as right as we could. If not that, then I’d keep my damned mouth shut and see if this attention would blow over a bit.
How misguided, at the core, can one person (and a family) be? To launch a media campaign that I can best characterize as the “Vantrease Media Blitzkrieg” was asinine. Just devastating. Well, for their violent son, that is. For us, it kept Ryan relevant.
Okay, so I’m going to go crazy if I continue to talk about Austin Vantrease, his family, his support system, and everything that flies out (“debris”). I promise you — and me — I’m moving off of this after today. I have tons of items that I want to tell you about. Exciting things! Like A Man Cave for Ryan, Hydrotherapy, and Vibration Therapy.
Again, thank you for staying with me through the past several weeks. It was rough and you didn’t leave me side. Thank goodness for all of you!
Listened to the interview. Good job Ken. God bless you guys and you are always in our prayers.
And besides, if they did change — I’m talking their hears and minds now, not just their behavior — wouldn’t that be a good thing?
Meh – the VT’s aren’t going to change their stripes … Doesn’t matter what I or anyone else says. Trying to reach them with reason is like trying to scale a mile high wall of false pride and bitter arrogance.
Stop giving them ideas about how to handle themselves in the future.
I want to hear about vibration therapy. I used to do light therapy with my dog and played Mozart for her. They say it helps them. She seemed to like it.
I can only imagine the “man cave” is decked out for WVU to start playing. Get on with awesome new stuff!
Dennis Allen says
I can’t get the interview to come up but so happy that things went your way. Think about Ryan every day. Words just don’t come to me about Austin’s family…..I just can’t understand what is wrong with those people. Just no excuse for their behavior after what their son has done.
Gail Doyle says
Ken , Listened to whole interview ..very good Ryan will always be RELEVANT
and as Jo said will not listen to any more vt family has to
say until a SINCERE apology and FULL restitution is made ALWAYS HERE FOR RYAN
H. Davenport says
Imagine this scenario:
“We the Vantrease family are shocked and appalled that our family member was involved in a tragic incident in West Virginia that caused severe injury to Ryan Diviney. What a horrendous cascade of events that led to this outcome. Austin made a huge mistake in his actions.We do not condone his actions in any way. We do believe that fueled by alcohol and immaturity, he acted in a way that is counter to everything we have tried to instill in him over the years. Acting in the moment, we do not believe Austin meant to cause irreversible brain damage to Ryan, but the fact is that he did, and was found guilty in a court of law. We respect the law of the land and know that our child needs to pay his debt to society, and to Ryan, as outlined by the court. We love our son and will do everything in our power to support him on his road to redemption.”
(to paraphrase) “Austin was involved in a tragic accident which was caused by the actions of the victim. Ryan is at fault for drinking and trash talking. There has been a miscarriage of justice here. Please release Austin so he can go on vacation with his family.”
Imagine how public perception would be different.
I would also add something along the lines of, ” in light of the devastating injuries Ryan sustained from Austin’s attack, it is our family’s intention to help Ryan however we can. We will begin by making a substantial donation to Ryan’s wish list, followed by support of ongoing fund raisers for Ryan. It is our fervent hope and prayer that our actions will demonstrate to the Diviney family our sincere remorse for what Austin did to Ryan.”
H. D. says
Yes, Paula, that would be perfect.
Only in a perfect world could the first scenario take place. We live in a fallen world with those of the Vantrease caliber who selfishly only think of their own ilk. Very sad, indeed!
Laura Lee says
~~Keeping Ryan Relevant~~ ~~Love and Prayers~~!!
Jeannette Hennett says
I listened to the Audio file. We are here and we’ll remain here for your family Ken! I’m having a hard time believing “Andy” VT Facebook Post…
“Public sentiment was deemed neutral because of all the letters” WTH??
Is that just another line of BS (or major embellishment) or do we need to step it up for next year?…Incidentally, can we sign the Petition each year or just once??
It’s never too early for us to look ahead on Ryan’s behalf. One year moves quickly but I know for you the days and weeks must move slowly…My guess anyway. …Interesting how all her spewing stopped as soon as his Parole was denied. I guess she’s pouting that they didn’t get the Easy pass!
Jeannette Hennett says
…..I made an error. VT Sister Andy did spew on July 24th on FB…with a poem “Start a rumor, a mere invention” blah de blah….saying it’s eerily familiar to a certain situation going on. It only supports INSINCERITY!! Amazing…No lesson learned and the damning begins within hours. Pretty hypocritical or her!! HER INFERENCE IS A RUMOR…Pathetic.
Couldn’t agree more Ken! What were they thinking? Gale and Andy do you honestly think that society really wants a felon who kicks a man when he is down and calls it an accident out walking with our kids? No, No and triple No. Just look at the signatures of society, 500 vs over 150,000 against freedom for a felon with this behavior.
Gale, Andy and Bob might not get that, but the WV Parole Board did. I do not have access to my fax, but when I do get near it at the end of the week I will send the board a thank you letter like I did last year.
Ken, I stumbled across this website after a friend of mine shared Ryan’s story on Facebook. My heart instantly broke for your family and I could not stop reading your blog posts and all of the comments (good and obtuse). I have never commented before. However, last night while I was reading a gossip site called the Daily Mail, I came across a story that seemed eerily familiar. However, the two things that were different are the fact that victim has regained some motor functions and has the ability to communicate, and secondly and more importantly is that the offender was sentenced to 24 years in prison for his crime. Here is the link to the terrible story:
I don’t know why I felt the need to share this story. I know it’s a macabre reminder of your daily reality. But I think I wanted to share with your readers (more importantly the disgusting VT supporters) what Austin could have/should have been sentenced to, for his acts. To me, 2-10 years is a slap on the wrist.
I applaud you and your family and most importantly Ryan all the way from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Ryan is, and will remain relevant here in the City of Brotherly Love.
Cheryl O says
Still here : )
Message to the Family Vantrease from this day forward: We’re just not that into you!
Looking forward to reading about Ryan’s new therapies and other things. Always here with faith, hope, love and prayer.
John Maletta says
John Maletta says
You betcha. We Got This, buddy!!!