Ryku was born on Nehru Colony, where he grew up within a remote Temple and community. There, he would be taught various forms of martial arts and discipline. It wouldn't be until one day, a Flaxian starship would bypass their way into Federation space for the first time, and launch and attempt a first contact with the Colony.
Unfortunately, the first contact didn't turn out as well, and misunderstandings were quickly into motion. The Flaxian's attempted to fight the colonist's, until Starfleet ship's arrived to diffuse the situation. Ryku was one of the colonists to be involved in the conflict, and met many officers from vessels like the USS Mercedes. He in turn was invited to join the Academy back at Earth, and upon graduation, Ryku joined his first ship, the USS Meridian.
After serving on the USS Meridian as Ensign, for a short while, Jin encountered Lieutenant Commander Hawku Ryku wandering the corridors. Hawku, also a Trill but with a Symbiont, at the time had come in contact with a strange creature in Engineering. The creature caused Hawku to undergo a destabilizing process within his quantum structure. Fearing the loss of the Symbiont above all else, Hawku Ryku had the Symbiont transferred to Jin under the medical expertise of Doctor Kaoru. During the operation Hawku died, and the then Jin Ryku was immediately promoted to the Lieutenant Commander rank and Chief Helm position. ("The More Things Change...")