Brillion boy gets to dress like his Amazon heroes for Halloween
Nov. 4, 2021
By David Nordby
The Brillion News
BRILLION – It is the Halloween season, but for Sawyer Burich last Wednesday likely felt like Halloween, Christmas and his birthday rolled into one.
Sawyer, son of Danielle and Eric Burich, is a 7-year-old Brillion boy with autism who developed such a strong fondness for the Amazon delivery drivers who bring packages to his family’s doorsteps that he wanted to dress as one for Halloween.
“He decided on his own that he wanted to be an Amazon driver. I looked for a little while and couldn’t find anything, so then we reached out just to see if we could purchase something,” Danielle said.
Instead of a Halloween costume for Danielle and Eric to purchase, regional Amazon representatives came up with the idea to special deliver a uniform to Sawyer, give him a tour of the van and allow him to assist in the delivery of packages to his parents, who were ironically receiving two packages the day of the surprise.
“It’s amazing. To do something for our kid in Brillion, Wisconsin, to even respond,” Danielle said.
“A global company to take the time for a special needs boy to make his day, make his whole year, so to speak, is just beyond words,” Eric said.
The Amazon operations team of Kris Harkins and Chris McKeithan delivered the surprise to Sawyer. “It’s awesome to be involved in something like this,” McKeithan said.
Harkins has delivered packages in the Brillion area before.
“Once I saw the address, I was like, ‘I know that street. I know where we’re going,’” Harkins said. “It’s cool maybe we even made a difference before they reached out to us. Maybe Sawyer saw us in the vans, and we didn’t know we were making this connection, and in the end, here it is.”
Harkins and McKeithan were parked around the corner from the Burich home and waited for the correct moment to pull onto the street.
“Nerves. Heart beating fast like making sure we want to do things correctly. We want to make this young man as happy as possible,” McKeithan said.
“Knowing that you’re making this big of an impact on somebody, and more than one person here today, it was something that as a driver you don’t think about often,” Harkins said. “Walking up I was a little nervous, but then I saw his face … Everything went away, and I was just ready to go, ready to make his day.”
Sawyer opened the gifts, put on the uniform and danced with glee on the family’s front porch.
Sawyer’s explanation for why he wanted to be an Amazon driver for Halloween was simple.
“I love them,” Sawyer said.
Sawyer said he images himself delivering packages like Amazon drivers and likes the vans, too.
“Cool,” Sawyer said, with the heaviest sense of the word to describe the day.
Halloween was already one of Sawyer’s favorite holidays.
“I like to go trick-or-treating,” Sawyer said, and he was even more excited this year now that he could go in a complete Amazon uniform. Sawyer said his favorite part of the uniform was his badge, with his name on it.
Sawyer’s love of Amazon drivers isn’t new.
“It was probably about two years ago. He started pointing out the trucks and he recognizes the logo and when they show up … it’s just that day’s special time,” Eric said. “Gotta go to the window, gotta go wave … He loves to just wave and see who was the package for that day and loves to help open them up.”
Sawyer was one of the first students at Caravel Autism Health in Brillion. The staff from the learning center joined him for his surprise Wednesday.
“Just excitement for Sawyer. We were super excited for him and his day,” Eric said.
Sawyer knew he would be getting an Amazon costume but meeting the drivers, touring the van and helping deliver a package was a surprise. It was especially fitting that the Amazon packages were being delivered to the Burichs that day.
“That was a nice little cool icing on the cake,” Harkins said. “He did awesome. I’m looking forward to seeing him do a couple more down the road.”
“He nailed it,” Danielle said.
“I won’t know until I open up my packages, but I’d say they were delivered in good character,” Eric joked.
Harkins said he finds the delivery job relaxing and enjoys being in communities. He has two degrees and side jobs but says he doesn’t know if he’d want to be doing anything else. That sentiment was shared by McKeithan.
“A lot of the people have to realize that Amazon’s not just delivering packages. We are bringing things to people that people want. We are making people smile. We are like small celebrities in the area. Kids run up to the van, people wave at us,” McKeithan said. “There’s a lot of people in this company who really care about the community and giving back.”
Amazon is continuing to add to its workforce at amazon.com/jobs with sign-on bonuses and other perks.
A video of the delivery to Sawyer is available on The Brillion News’ Facebook page. It has generated more than 13,000 views.
This story was first printed in the Nov. 4, 2021 print edition of The Brillion News. Please see the newspaper for additional photos of Sawyer's big day.