Opinion: Brainteasers in honor of Ryan Owens' 37th birthday

By Aziz Inan | March 5, 2017 12:49pm

Photo courtesy of family of CPO Ryan Owens via Wikimedia Commons.

William “Ryan” Owens, a decorated United States Navy SEAL senior chief petty officer, was born on March 5, 1980 in Peoria, Illinois and died on January 29, 2017 at age 36, due to his injuries in a firefight while he participated in a terrorism-related special forces mission that took place in Yemen [1]. If Owens were still alive, he would have turned 37 today, Sunday, March 5, 2017. As a tribute to this hero, I constructed the following birthday brainteasers:

1. Owens died 35 days before his 37th birthday. Since 37 equals 20 plus 17, putting 35, 20 and 17 side by side yield 352017, Owens’ 37th birthday, 3/5/2017.

2. Owens’ birth date March 5 expressed as 35 equals 5 times 7 where 5 plus 7 is 12 and the 12th prime number is 37, the age Owen would have turned if he was alive today. Further, 12 times the sum of the digits of 12, namely 3, equals 36, the age Owens died 35 days ago from today.

3. Owens died 330 days after his 36th birthday where 330 times square root of 36 equals Owens’ birth year, 1980.

4. If numbers 1 to 26 are assigned to the letters of the English alphabet as A being 1, B being 2, C being 3, etc., the sum of the numbers assigned to the letters of William, Ryan, and Owens each equals 79, 58, and 76, respectively. Interestingly enough, if Owens’ birthday 3/5/1980 is split as 35, 19, and 80, these three numbers add up to 134 which represents Ryan Owens since 134 equals 58 plus 76.

5. The reverse of 2017, namely 7102, equals 53 times 134 where 53 is Owens’ birth date 5 March and again, 134 represents Ryan Owens.

6. The sum of the numbers assigned to the letters of William equals 79 where the product of the digits of 79 is 63, with reverse 36, the age Owens died. Additionally, the sum of the digits of 79 equals 16 and the 16th prime number is 53, Owens’ birth date, 5 March. Moreover, reverse of 16 is 61 and 61 times the difference of the digits of 61 yields 305, again Owens’ birth date, March 5.

7. Owens’ birthday number in any year 20AB starting with the number 20 always equals 20 plus AB, that is, 20 + 10A + B. For example, Owens celebrated his 36th birthday last year in 2016 where the sum of 20 and 16 equals 36. Further, his 37th birthday today equals 20 plus 17.

8. Owens died this year on 1/29 where the sum of 129 and its reverse, namely 921, divided by the sum of 1 and 29, namely 30, results in Owens’ birth date, 35. Moreover, 35 plus 30 yields 65 and coincidentally, Owens was born on the 65th day of 1980. In addition, the product of the digits of 65 equals 30.

9. The sum of the digits of 1/29/2017, the day Owens died, equals 22 where the 22nd prime number is 79 (Williams).

10. The sum of the numbers assigned to the letters of William Owens equals 155, which is 5 times 31 where these two prime numbers add up to 36, the age Owens died.

11. Owens’ 29th birthday expressed as 3052009 was a perfect square date since it was equal to square of 1747.

12. Owens’ 31st birthday on 3052011 was special because 2011 was the 305th prime number.

13. Owens’ 32nd birthday on 3052012 was special too since 4 times the reverse of 305, namely 503, equals 2012.

14. Owens’ 35th birthday in 2015 was also special since 35 coincides with his birth date, March 5.

15. If he lived, Owens would have turned 38 in 2018 where twice the sum of the left and right halves of 2018, namely 20 and 18, equals 76 (Owens).

16. Lastly, Owens would have turned 45 in the year 2025, which equals square of 45.

I humbly salute you for your extraordinary dedication and sacrifice, Owens. I hope you rest in peace. Amen.

[1] William Owens (Navy SEAL), Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Owens_(Navy_SEAL)

Aziz Inan is a professor of electrical engineering and he can be reached at ainan@up.edu.