Buckley Air Force Base Names 7-Year-Old ‘Airman For the Day’

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. (CBS4) – A boy’s rare disease that keeps him from walking normally couldn’t keep him from realizing his dream — if only for a day.

Seven-year-old Keegan Stipe, who was always wanted to be an airman when he’s older, was diagnosed with transverse myelitis when he was 10 months old. It paralyzed him as an infant.

But on Tuesday, airmen at Buckley Air Force Base hosted Keegan and made him an honorary “Airman for a Day.”

His father, Andrew, said the day has already translated to positive changes in his son.

“I think today he began to come out of his shell more,” he said. “I think he enjoys making people smile, and I think that’s one of the best things about him.”

Keegan toured the base, donned a flight suit and inspected fighter jets up close.

“It’s so much more than we ever thought would occur here, and everyone here has been completely hospitable and the amount of kindness everyone has shown has been amazing,” Stipe said.

He said his son’s prognosis is promising. Keegan uses crutches for stability and may be able to walk someday.

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