A child with special needs is hard enough for any family. When the fragile arrangement to get that child to and from school is taken away it can be devastating.
That is the reality for parents of more than 54,000 special needs students as the school bus strike continues in the city, including one family in Queens with a boy who is deaf, partially blind and needs an oxygen tank, 24 hours a day.
Parker Chen, 4, relies on sign language to express himself. His mother, Suzanne, says he is always saying hello.
Little Parker is visually and hearing impaired, he also needs a feeding tube and oxygen tank. He is one of 325 students who rely on buses to get from their homes to the Lexington School for the Deaf in Queens -- all of them now have to make other plans.
Suzanne also has to worry about her 16-month-old daughter. Wednesday she ended up calling a livery cab. Suzanne is going to apply to be reimbursed for the car service. She is trying to be understanding on both sides of the strike, but isn't sure how long special needs families like hers can juggle all of this.
She is hoping the little mayor of Lexington will once again have his regular ride.