Note: When Dan Olmsted passed away last January, we put out a call for Dan-ecdotes. These are your fond memories of our good friend, mentor and leader, Dan. Thanks to Moira Giammatteo of TACA for this lovely tribute. Fitting to run on a Saturday, which was Dan's Weekly Wrap day. Feel free to send your memories of Dan to me at [email protected]. Thanks. Kim
By Moira Giammatteo
When he and Mark Blaxil were on the book tour for Age Of Autism, they kindly agreed to speak at my TACA Chapter meeting in Woodland Hills, CA. After the meeting I offered to have them over for some wine and munchies. It was a lovely evening. My son has a service dog named Navarro and at the time we were also babysitting a friend’s service dog named Reba so our house was full of laughter and dog hair. Dan was delighted with both the dogs and spent a lot of time scratching each one behind the ears, alternating between the two depending on which one was bugging him for attention.
A few years later, at one of the many, many autism conferences I attended, I ran into Dan and we chatted for a while. He then asked me about the dogs. I said, “Oh, I only have one dog.” having completely forgotten that he had met our friend’s dog as well. He not only remembered both dog’s names he remembered that we were babysitting one of them and what breed they were. To me this just illustrates not only his attention to detail but also his gentle soul. I hope wherever he is that he has a comfortable spot to read a book and a dog to keep him company.