PORT RICHEY — Waylen isn't your average 5-year-old.
While his classmates were still learning to pedal on two wheels, Waylen was begging his mom, Tonya Huff, for an electric dirt bike.
But he didn't want a motorized bike to be cool. He wanted it so he could be part of 2Wheel Heroes, a charity group that uses its love of motorcycles and superheroes to raise funds and help children.
Soon Waylen had a bike decked out with Captain America decals and a detailed costume to match. This weekend he was planning to help his fellow superheroes raise money for St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital.
But now the tiny superhero is devastated: Huff says someone swiped his one-of-a-kind bike from the family's garage.
The thieves even took his Captain American helmet, Huff said.
"We didn't hear the garage open at all," Huff said. "We have been looking around the neighborhood for it along with other friends also looking out for it."
So far, no luck.
The founder of 2Wheel Heroes, Clark Schueller, said when Waylen is volunteering with his crew of superheroes, he knows he's working. He's not running around. He's posing for photos with other kids and adults.
He's got "the biggest smile ever," Schueller said. "He cares about what we do at events."
Sometimes they show up as free entertainment. Schueller and his gang — which includes the likes of Wonder Woman, Spider-Man, Batman and more — have also saved more than a few birthday parties when professional entertainment backed out.
This weekend, he's doing a raffle to raise money for St. Jude's and showing off his bike with other volunteers at the Cottee River Bike Fest in Pasco County.
Waylen was supposed to show up at that event as Captain America.
"Now, he has no bike to show," his mom said.
Waylen's bike is black and covered in custom Captain American decals, like one of the iconic shield placed over the bike's motor. Huff is worried whoever took it might have removed the decals, but she said the seat of the bike has a cut on its left side.
Huff said she is still in the process of filing a report with the police and the bike has been missing since Sunday.
She said other items were stolen from the garage, too, but nothing she cares about replacing as much as her son's bike.
Anyone who has tips about Waylen's bike can email him at [email protected]
Contact Sara DiNatale at [email protected] Follow @sara_dinatale.