Rylee (Hanks) Downs – UPDATED

Memorial services 27-year old Rylee (Hanks) Downs of Chadron, NE, are Saturday, February 5, 2022 at 2:00 in the Crawford High School Gymnasium.

A memorial has been established for the medical expenses of her daughter Ellianna. Donations may be sent in care of Chamberlain Chapel, PO Box 970, Chadron, NE 69337.

Online condolences may be left at www.chamberlainchapel.com

Rylee Nicole (Hanks) Downs was born to Wade and Hattie Hanks on Sept. 5, 1994, in Chadron and left this world suddenly with her mother and unborn child on Jan. 14, 2022, near Hemingford, NE.

Rylee married her best friend, Justin Downs, on Jan. 3, 2022. Their marriage brought together children Jax and Ellianna.

After graduating from Crawford High School, Rylee attended Western Nebraska Community College for basketball, then completed her education at Chadron State College, where she received a Bachelors of Science degree in Elementary Education.

Children made Rylee’s life whole and she started her career by teaching 3rd grade at Martin Luther King Elementary in Omaha, NE.

She then decided to move back to western Nebraska to be close to her family, where she enjoyed substitute teaching. Here she brought into the world her greatest joy, Ellianna, born on Aug. 3, 2020.

Rylee loved being a mother first and foremost, but was competitive in everything she participated in including sports, video games (Crash Bandicoot, Call of Duty), and anything involving her cousins and friends.

Rylee enjoyed fishing, outdoor activities and talking sports with her family. After the birth of Ellianna, Rylee and Hattie spent endless hours laughing and enjoying life together with Ellianna.

She also enjoyed Grandma Dottie Days, family trips, being around children, animals, friends, and listening to Cardi B and Juice World.

Rylee is survived by her husband Justin Downs, stepson Jax Downs, daughter Ellianna Collins, father Wade Hanks of Crawford, brother Darrick and Lacie Hanks of Mullen, grandparents Gene and Dottie Peters of Hay Springs, Ron and Marianne Hanks of Hay Springs, aunts and uncles: Dee Dee (Peters) and Randy Ray of Hay Springs, Cory and Tia Hanks of Hay Springs, Lynn and Teri Hanks of Crawford, Todd and Jennifer Peters of Mullen; cousins: Hannah Ray, Levi Ray, Chris Ray, Haley (Hanks) and Jesse Savala, Erica Peters, Jacob Hanks, Brandon Peters, Sadie Hanks, and many dear friends.

Rylee Nicole (Hanks) Downs was a caring daughter, sister, wife, mother, and friend

2 thoughts on “Rylee (Hanks) Downs – UPDATED”

  1. Justin, I am so sorry for your loss. You are a wonderful person and I know you are going through a terrible time. I want you to know that I am thinking of you and of your family.

    Laura Gaudet
    Formerly of Chadron, NE
    Now located in Monterey, California

  2. Justin Downs and The Hanks family….My condolences to all. I’m Ellianna’s great grandmother. I got a chance to meet Rylee while I was visiting Omaha, during the time she was expecting Elli…We had and enjoyable time after finding out we were both teachers, comparing Nebraska and Memphis, Tn (where I live) educational system. I loved her smile and the passion she had for kids, and knew she would be a great mom. I’m praying for Elli ♥️♥️, and all family members.♥️♥️♥️

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