Four-Year-Old Calls Darth Vader for Instructions

On 2 April 2013, the four-year-old son of Stephanie Kaloi had surgery on both legs and went home with a walker and knee immobilizers. Her son hated the walker because he associated it with pain; after the operation, he was asked to walk with a walker and it hurt — a lot. Fortunately, Ms. Kaloi and comic artist and illustrator Ben Dewey are friends. (Mr. Dewey is the author of the Tragedy Series, a Tumblr.) He turned the walker into an AT-AT from the Star Wars films — the AT-ATs attack the good guys at the beginning of The Empire Strikes Back. Ms. Kaloi wrote about her son, “Dude loves being able to call Darth Vader (his favorite character) for instructions, and has mastered the sound of a laser being fired. More importantly, the goal was accomplished: our son happily walked all around our living room firing lasers at us for nearly an hour without once being scared that the walker would cause him pain. He’ll need the walker for another three weeks, and having him happy to use it is a huge leap forward for his recovery. It’s absolutely magical, and yes: the Force is mighty strong with this one. And if you REALLY want to geek out, a friend of mine posted a photo on Reddit and WILLIAM SHATNER COMMENTED ON IT. Did your fandom heads just implode? ’Cause mine just did.” This is the comment by William Shatner (he played Captain Kirk on Star Trek, but you already knew that, right?), who when he wrote it had seen only a photograph, not the article by Ms. Kaloi: “Very clever! I bet he loved it!”

For Further Information: Stephanie Kaloi, “An AT-AT walker designed for a four-year-old.” Offbeat Families. 7 April 2013

Also: “A friend if mine’s kid had some surgery, needs a walker while he recovers. He pretended it was an AT-AT, so they dressed it up for him. Here are the results.” Star Wars Subreddit. April 2013

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