Mike Etzell says a lifetime of riding public transit gave his children confidence and the mobility needed for their independence.

Mike Etzell says a lifetime of riding public transit gave his children confidence and the mobility needed for their independence.

Youth Find Confidence and Independence Riding Public Transit

It’s not easy raising children, especially in today’s hectic, high-speed world. Mike Etzell raised four, including twins. He says a lifetime of riding public transit gave his children confidence and the mobility needed for their independence.

“My kids shifted from the school bus to Island Transit over time,” says Etzell, adding that all four graduated from Coupeville High School. “All they’ve known is walking to the bus and taking the bus. It was part of their normal.”

The Etzell children are all out of the home now. Lucas, 23 years old and one of the twins, moved into his own apartment in Coupeville last summer and holds a job at Pickles Deli in Clinton where he works washing dishes and helping where needed. Lucas was born with an extra 21st chromosome, so he experiences Down Syndrome. He is a regular Island Transit rider.

“He could have taken the special bus the school offers, but we insisted he first take the regular school bus to get to know his classmates. Little by little, he experienced the fun of Island Transit and the larger community,” explains Etzell. “He takes pride in knowing the system. If he sees something isn’t working, he always says, ‘we’ve got to fix that’ and he uses the RouteShout app so he can see how close the bus is, what stop it’s at, and if the bus is running late.”

Lucas was one of the first riders Todd Morrow met when he started his job as Executive Director of Island Transit in 2018. “He made me feel so welcome and special, like I was the President of the United States,” says Morrow.

Etzell chuckles, thinking about his son’s enthusiasm. He says Lucas is a border-line bus expert. “He will tell you everything there is to know about Island Transit routes and where they go and when to get off at your stop.”

Island Transit is more than just a ride to Lucas and his siblings. Learning to ride the bus developed skills that will take them through life, claims Etzell, who has ridden with Island Transit for over 20 years. “I know where ever they live they can get where they need to be because they know how to use public transit.”

As the Developmental Disabilities Coordinator for Island County Human Services, Etzell teaches other high school students and adults living with a disability to ride the bus. “If you’re mobile, you can get to your job, your housing, shopping and recreation, says Etzell. “Riding the bus removes barriers and opens up possibilities. It gives you the independence you need to live on your own and be part of the community.”

Etzell adds, “If you invest the time, then good things happen.”

Read more stories from people who ride the bus and why at www.islandtransit.org/whyIride.

More in Marketplace

Gluco Shield main image
Gluco Shield Pro Reviews – Legit Ingredients or Cheap Formula?

If you’re reading this article, it could be because you’re looking for… Continue reading

main image
Best Keto Supplements – Top Keto Diet Pills for Weight Loss

Dr. Russell Morse Wilder’s Ketogenic Diet has only been introduced recently. Yet,… Continue reading

main image
Slim Now Keto Reviews: Does It Work for Weight Loss or Scam?

Everyone wants to lose weight for different reasons. Most people think losing… Continue reading

TSR
Maximum Recall Review: Obvious Scam or Ingredients That Work

Memory retention recedes over time due to several reasons. Intellectual ability retards… Continue reading

Main image
How to Live in Abundance Reviews (Brooke Paige) Is It Legit?

Is the Abundance you have been looking for in the hands of… Continue reading

main image
Keto Lite Reviews – Do KetoLite Weight Loss Diet Pills Work or Scam?

Living an unhealthy lifestyle increases the chances of developing health complications at… Continue reading

main image
Tesla BioHealer Reviews – Tesla BioHealing Product Overview

Every creature on earth is driven forth by the energy it generates… Continue reading

main image
The Oxidized Cholesterol Strategy Review Is It Worth Buying?

No one wants to stop eating their favorite food. Cholesterol is not… Continue reading

main image
Keto Smart Review: Smart Keto Complete Ketogenic Diet Guide?

Looking for an easy approach to achieving your weight loss and fitness… Continue reading

TSR
iKeto Diet Reviews – Personalized Ketogenic Meal Plans That Work?

When you decide you want to lose weight, where do you typically… Continue reading

main image
XOTH Keto Reviews – Is XOTH Nutrition Keto BHB Pills Scam or Not?

Have you been following the scientific community regarding the effects of ketones… Continue reading

main image
Keto Tru Lean Reviews: Are Keto TruLean Pills Scam or Legit?

Keto TruLean is today the most talked about weight loss product in… Continue reading