PLYMOUTH, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A local 10-year-old boy with autism makes his first big purchase as a young entrepreneur. He didn’t buy a bike or a new video game console. He picked up something that will save lives in his community.
Take a look at Elm Hill Hose Company #3’s newest piece of lifesaving equipment: a Jaws of Life. The donor? A young man named Bryan Lyons who raised the money to pay for it.
“All of this after one kind act. One kind act started this whole thing,” Chief Brian Oppelt said.
Lyons spent his summer behind a lemonade stand at different community events. He was determined to get the rescue tool that can break people out of car entrapments.
When asked why he decided to raise the money to purchase the equipment, Lyons’ answer was simple: “To save more lives.”
After just five weeks, mission accomplished.
“Never give up,” Lyons said.
Between the lemonade stand and donations, he raised more than $10,000 to buy the hefty tool. In the fire service, you always have to be prepared for the unexpected. This Jaws of Life may add another 40 pounds to the job but it can also save a life.
“Me and my guys have talked about for several years and to actually see it here sitting behind me is kind of surreal,” Oppelt said.
Lyons formed a relationship with Oppelt and the fire company four years ago. Lyons asked his mom if they could stop at the station. Since then, it’s been a friendship that keeps on giving.
“It kind of brought him out of his own shell and he started talking more. More questions for the chief,” Linda Uren, Bryan’s mother said.
Eyewitness News told you how the company made him a junior fire chief in May. To return the favor, Lyons donated $110 he raised selling lemonade. His kind gesture has been recognized nationally and even internationally, receiving Facebook messages and law enforcement patches from all over the world.
“If there’s any kids out there listening, one kind act can change your life,” Oppelt said.
The gift-giving doesn’t stop there for Bryan. He says he wants to get the department new gas masks and coats.