News & Politics

Heroes of the Crisis: A Nine-Year-Old Who’s Helping Veterans

Tyler Stallings is inspired by three generations of family members who've served in the armed forces.

Photograph by Images of Life Photography.

This article is part of Washingtonian‘s feature “Heroes of the Crisis.” From medical professionals to social-justice activists to culinary stars, here are some of the people who have helped get us through these most challenging of times. Read about the 15 people making a difference during the pandemic here.

Tyler Stallings
CEO, Kid Time Enterprises

How he’s helping: 

The nine-year-old makes “hero bags” and “hero boxes” for homeless veterans, featuring toiletries and clothing along with pandemic-related supplies such as hand sanitizer and masks. Tyler, who lives in Halethorpe, Maryland, launched the initiative after watching a video about veterans living on the street. “It all started when I said I wanted to build them houses. Mom said, ‘Well, we can’t do that.’ ”

Toughest challenge: 

Remember how hard it was to get a bottle of Purell in April? Imagine trying to buy enough to fill hundreds of bags. Tyler’s mom, Andrea Blackstone, often drives him to multiple stores, sometimes traveling an hour from home.

Biggest win: 

At the start of sum-mer, he donated two new AC units to Patriot House, a home for veterans getting back on their feet. “I knew the veter-ans would have a good air conditioner and they wouldn’t have to suffer with the heat.”

Who’s inspiring him:

Three generations of family members who have served in the armed forces. “My great-grandfather fought in World War I. I wish I could have met him.”

This article appears in the October 2020 issue of Washingtonian.

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Daniella Byck
Assistant Editor

Daniella Byck joined Washingtonian in August 2018. She is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she studied journalism and digital culture.