Minnesota toddler Kenneth Allen wanted to go to the county fair by any means possible; and he managed to get there, all on his own, thanks to his motorized John Deere toy tractor.
On Thursday evening, Kenneth’s parents Kristopher and Lynn Allen realized that their two-and-a-half year old son was missing, along with his tractor.
For about a week, Kenneth and his parents had watched the Chisago County Fair set up at the fairground less than two blocks from their home. Kenneth had obviously taken particular note.
Upon realizing Kenneth was gone, Lynn quickly dialed 911, later telling local Fox 9, “I was just scared, what was going through my mind was that someone had actually took him.”
Chisago County Sergeant Jason Foster, who was patrolling the fairground, was on the case. “We found him in about two or three minutes,” Foster tells Yahoo Lifestyle. “He has bright red hair. You could see him from a block away. As soon as the dispatcher said ‘bright red hair’ we stopped Kenneth and called his parents.”
Simultaneously, state representative Brian Johnson was also nearby and spotted Kenneth. “I overheard two women asking a young boy for his name near the entry gate of the fair,” he tells Yahoo Lifestyle. “As a retired Deputy Sheriff, I knew that something was amiss and I stepped in. Believing that this young child was at the fair on his own, I contacted the Chisago County Deputies at the fairgrounds for assistance.”
Sergeant Foster says he and his partner found Kenneth by the Tilt-a-Whirl. “He kept pointing at the ride. He was a little bit shy.”
Kenneth had driven out of his yard and, going one mile per hour, cruised down the sidewalk and around the block. He then traveled through a back entrance typically reserved for emergency vehicles, into the fair. “He’s quite the little driver,” Sergeant Foster tells Yahoo Lifestyle.
Kenneth’s parents were relieved and upset. “I was glad to see him, but the first thing I did was pop the hood, pulled his battery and said you’re grounded,” Kenneth’s dad Kristopher told Fox 9. Kenneth’s tractor usually pulls a trailer, which he had abandoned for his jaunt to the fair, presumably to drive faster.
The Chisago County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page quickly filled up with comments about the incident. “Good luck in a few years with that one, dad!” one commenter wrote. “Wait’ll the little guy gets his learner’s permit in 14 years, lol. Thank God all’s well that ends well,” wrote another.
Sergeant Foster tells Yahoo Lifestyle that Kenneth was too small to ride the Tilt-a-Whirl. “But we would pass the hat around in the sheriff’s office and buy him a dozen tickets if his parents would let us.”