Not all heroes wear capes, although some do have amazing beards! Tamworth Taxi driver Ryan Newberry took a local family from the Tamworth Airport to Sydney in order for them to catch a much needed Bali break. He only charged them half price as well. Today we tip our cap to the bloke that went above and beyond.
It wasn’t a bird, and it definitely wasn’t a plane – it was a Tamworth maxi-taxi and its bearded driver that saved the day for one Tamworth family.
It added up to a 1000km round trip on Monday, but mission accomplished.
Dave Moran, Jade Crough and their three kids had been looking forward to a family holiday to Bali for months, and while they were already facing the chances of a volcano interrupting their plans, what they did not expect was a radar malfunction at Sydney Airport.
What's this Faces of Tamworth all about?
The radar outage threw Australia’s domestic airports into chaos on Monday, with no flights allowed to arrive in or depart Sydney for several hours, including several to and from Tamworth, in the New England of NSW.
In steps cabbie Ryan Newberry.
“I had been booked for a fair from the airport to town, but they didn’t show up because their flight had been cancelled when I saw Dave looking pretty stressed,” Mr Newberry said.
“He said their flights had been cancelled and they weren’t sure they could make their connecting flight to Bali that afternoon – so I said I can get you to Mascot if we leave now - he said how much, and we left.”
While the price is confidential, the cabbie did offer this.
“If I left the meter running it would have been $2100 to $2400, but I did them a deal for less than half,” Mr Newberry said.
“If they didn’t make it they would have lost thousands in flights and accommodation, and they are hoping to claim the taxi fare on their travel insurance.”
“It was still a great day for me, I made good money for a days work, didn’t have to look for fares, and got to help out a really nice family.”
It is that outlook on life that has made Mr Newberry a crowd favourite in the Tamworth Taxi ranks, four years after an accident had the former plasterer looking for a new line of work.
“I love it – I meet lots of different people, some at their worst and some at their best – on Monday I saw the family in both states – they were pretty stressed but once we knew we were going to make it they were pretty casual and we had a great road trip,” Mr Newberry said.
The family did make their connecting flight, taking the time to send their taxi-driving saviour a text message while likely sipping a pool-side cocktail.