Lake Tahoe Airport makes impression on autistic child

Staff report
Gus Bryne helping Lake Tahoe Airport staff in the office.

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — Lake Tahoe Airport and the people who use it have made quite an impression on a 10-year old with special needs.

Bob Bryne, of the Sacramento area, said that “the kindness that the employees of the airport showed is the type that leaves a lifetime impression.”

Bryne’s son, Gus, has Type 1 Diabetes, Muscular Dystrophy and Autism.

Bryne owns a plane and recently brought his son on a flight and the two landed in South Lake Tahoe at Mountain West Aviation where staff “parks planes and offer services to the newly arrived,” Bryne said.

He said Gus and the employees instantly connected. They let Gus help with tasks and also handed him a vest and let him help park planes, teaching him hand signals.

“Every Saturday morning I wake up to Gus saying, ‘Come on Daddy, I have to go to work at South Lake Tahoe Airport,’” Bryne said.

A local helicopter pilot gave Gus a ride.

After that, a Calstar helicopter pilot let Gus sit in the pilot and co-pilot seats and eventually let him go for a ride.

Bryne wanted to shed light on the airport and the people there for making his son feel so special and important.

“Most [special needs kids] don’t have friends or peers due to their conditions,” he said. “They are all so kind, sweet and appreciative of any attention they can get. They need all the help they can get including hearing their stories.”

The Tahoe Daily Tribune is a sister publication to the Sierra Sun.

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