Tim Ryan has been representing Ohio in Congress since 2003. He launched a campaign for president in 2019 but announced that he was dropping out of the race on October 24, 2019. He plans to run for re-election to the House instead.
Ryan has been married to wife Andrea Zetts since 2013. She has two children from a previous marriage and they welcomed a third child in 2014.
Ryan often shares pictures of Mason, Bella, and Brady on his social media pages and the entire family, including their dogs Bear and Buckeye, are prominently displayed on his campaign website.
Here’s what you need to know.
1. Tim Ryan Wrote About His Stepkids, Mason & Bella, In His 2012 Book
Tim Ryan and Andrea Zetts first met in 2008. They tied the knot in a private ceremony in New York City on April 20, 2013. Rep. Ryan was 39 years old at the time and Andrea had just turned 37; it was the second marriage for both of them. Though it’s unclear exactly when the two officially started dating, the fact that they met in 2008 indicates that Zetts’ children also likely met Ryan when they were very young.
Ryan included stories about both Isabella and Mason in his 2012 book, “A Mindful Nation,” though he referred to Andrea as his “friend” in the book. He wrote about how Bella, at age 6, began learning Tae Kwon Do and that he was surprised by how much she loved it. “Bella took to it as much as Mason did. During the first practice, it blew my mind as she screamed at the top of her lungs and kicked the bag.”
Rep. Ryan wrote about helping Mason practice his reading skills when Mason was 8. He said he sat down with Mason and showed him how to control his breathing whenever he got frustrated with a difficult book.
The acknowledgments included a thank you to the two children. “To Mason and Bella for all the joy and laughs they gave me and the lessons they taught me. They are lovely young people and a major inspiration for this book.”
2. Mason Plays Baseball & Disagrees With His Stepdad Over Which Professional Football Team is the Best
Football season in the Ryan households must be a rowdy affair. The Ryans live in Howland Township, Ohio, which is roughly equal distance between Cleveland and Pittsburgh.
Ryan is a fan of the Cleveland Browns while stepson Mason, 16, prefers the Pittsburgh Steelers. In September of 2018, Ryan posted a photo of himself and Mason wearing their respective team’s colors. He joked in the caption, “Got a mixed family. But it’s my account…Here we go Brownies!!!! #Browns”
Mason is also a baseball fan. Ryan shared the above photo in June of 2015 that showed Mason’s Little League team with their trophies. “Congrats to Mason and the Giants. Just won the Howland 12 yr old tournament. Congrats Coach Gebhardt and staff. Great job!”
3. Bella, a High School Cheerleader, Inspired Her Stepdad to Run For President
Isabella, who goes by the nickname Bella, may have been one of the main motivators behind Rep. Ryan’s decision to run for president. A top member of his campaign staff explained in a phone call with Heavy that after the GM plant near Youngstown, Ohio, closed down, Bella was in tears because a good friend of hers was going to have to move away because her father had lot his job. Bella told her stepdad that he needed to do something.
Bella and her older brother attend Howland High School in Warren, Ohio. Bella stays active as a freshman cheerleader. Her stepdad shared the above photo with Bella and the rest of her teammates in August of 2018. The caption read, “Great to be with Bella and the Howland football 9th-grade cheerleaders yesterday.”
In December of 2015, Bella served as her stepfather’s date to a White House holiday party. They posed with President Obama and First Lady Michelle under a picture of George Washington. Bella stood between Ryan and the president, wearing a shimmering yellow dress. Ryan wrote, “It was a joy to share this wonderful celebration with my daughter Bella.”
Ryan has also shared adorable pictures of Bella with baby brother Brady. The above photo was taken in May of 2015, showing Bella and Brady wearing red noses to support children’s causes.
Bella and Brady also met Santa Claus together in December of 2014. Brady sat happily on his sister’s lap as they posed for the picture.
4. Brady Was Born in 2014 & His Father Has Already Turned Him Into a Browns Fan
Brady Ryan was born on June 12, 2014. Roll Call reported at the time that Brady Zetts Ryan was 19.5 inches long, 6 pounds 12 ounces.
Brady has been a Cleveland Browns fan from the very beginning. His father put him in a Browns jersey as soon as possible.
Brady was also introduced to the world of politics early. In June of 2016, Rep. Ryan brought his baby son to the White House and joked that he was a “bipartisan hit” at the congressional picnic and that Brady loved running around on the lawn. He shared the above photo alongside then-Speaker of the House Paul Ryan.
Brady and his dad sometimes like to embark on fun science experiments. With mom Andrea manning the camera, they placed Mentos candy into a bottle of Diet Coke and watched the liquid explode into the air! Brady’s reaction was objectively adorable in that moment, as he squealed with delight and yelled “oh my god!”
Brady also loves playing with the family’s two dogs, Bear and Buckeye.
Brady and his father apparently seek mischief from time to time. Ryan shared the above photo in September of 2018 of Brady standing on the sidelines of a football field. “Please don’t tell my wife I bought Brady cotton candy at halftime of the football game.”
5. Tim Ryan Has Described Being a Father as the ‘Best Job in the World’
Rep. Tim Ryan loves to share pictures of his family on social media, though it remains to be seen how much they’ll remain in the spotlight during his presidential campaign. On Brady’s first birthday, the family posed for a photo holding a sign they had decorated. Ryan wrote, “Having a great day celebrating Brady’s first birthday. Couldn’t think of a better way to spend Father’s Day! The best job in the world is being a dad!!!”
The blended family appears to have been close from the get-go. Ryan said in an interview with the Business Journal in early 2014, less than a year after Tim and Andrea got married, “I love my stepkids like they’re my own.” And as referenced above, Ryan played a role in Mason and Bella’s lives from the time they were very young, and wrote about experiences he had with them in his 2012 book.