Tossing the Ball with Ryan & Kate: An Interview

In kindergarten Ryan was diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. Today, the thriving sixth grader and his mom Kate joined me to answer a few questions!

Including You is brought to you by the Tuscarawas County Board of Developmental Disabilities.

To celebrate Autism Acceptance Month, we sat down with Kate and her twelve-year-old son Ryan to talk about his life and his experiences as a person with autism. Ryan and his family live in Tampa, Florida and enjoy getting outside, playing sports, and trying new things!

Hi Ryan! Can you tell me about your favorite hobbies? Are you a member of any clubs or sports teams?

Mascots are my favorite. I like watching sports. I played different sports at the Special Olympics and I play my PS4.

Kate added that Ryan plays soccer in Florida, but when they lived in Colorado he participated in their Young Athletes program. During that time he played hockey with the Colorado Avalanche, basketball with the Denver Nuggets, baseball with the Rockies, and football with the Broncos!

Such a cool experience with all those teams!
Do you have a favorite book? What about a favorite movie?

Pete the Cat is my favorite book. Cars 3 is my favorite movie.

What jobs interest you? What would you like to do for a living?

Take orders at Dairy Queen.

That sounds like a yummy job! I bet you’d get free ice cream!
Do you have any pets? Can you tell me some of your favorite things about being a pet owner? Are you the primary care giver for your pet?

I have 2 dogs: Mabel and Luna. I take them to the dog park and dog wash with my mom and dad. My mom feeds them.

I have two dogs, too. They love going to the dog park! Can you tell me about some of the close relationships in your life? What fun things do you like to do with your mom and dad?

I have my mom and dad and 2 brothers- Owen is 14 and Colin is 13. I am going to be 12 on May 3.

What do you like to do with your friends?

I like to go bowling and go to Chuck E Cheese.

Do you like to travel? Do you find new places fun or scary? (I think they can be both!)

My family goes on a lot of trips. We go to lots of sporting events in different states. I think it’s fun going on Southwest Airlines.

It sounds like sports and traveling are two of your family’s favorite things!
Is there anything you’d like to share about your experience with having autism?

My mom and dad help me.

Do you have any advice for people who have autism?

Try new things with your family!

 A big thank you to Ryan (and Kate) for sharing his experiences with me! It sounds like he’s in for a fun summer of soccer and sports, dog parks with Mabel & Luna, and time with family.

The Tuscarawas County Board of Developmental Disabilities (TuscBDD) has resources for children and adults with autism spectrum disorder and other developmental disabilities. TuscBDD provides Early Intervention for children birth to three years old, Service and Support Administration for people of all ages, family support services, family mentorship, and more! To learn more about these serves and others, visit TuscBDD online at

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