Good Samaritan offers disabled Vernon man new trike following theft - InfoNews

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Good Samaritan offers disabled Vernon man new trike following theft

Maurice Strong towing his wheelchair with his stolen trike.
Image Credit: FACEBOOK/Caitlin McKenny
May 19, 2019 - 12:00 PM

VERNON - A disabled Vernon man who had his tricycle stolen May 13 may soon be back on three wheels.

West Kelowna resident Wayne Hyslop read about Maurice Strong's recumbent tricycle being stolen and decided to help.

While most people won't have a specialized three-wheeled people mover in their garage, Hyslop does. And he's decided Strong can have it.

"It sounds like the guy got a bad deal," Hyslop said. "I just hate it when somebody gets screwed."

Hyslop said he bought the tricycle a few years ago when he himself had mobility issues but has since gone back to riding on two wheels.

"I was going to sell the bike this year... but if somebody needs it that's way more important," he said.

While Hyslop's trike isn't quite as high-end as the model Strong got stolen it's still valued at a couple of thousand dollars and Hyslop believes should be a good fit for Strong. He also dismisses any praise for his generous act.

"What goes around comes around," he adds.

And after the terrible blow of losing what Strong refers to as his "legs," the 38-year-old is almost speechless about the offer.

"I'm not sure how to describe it," Strong told when asked how he felt. "It's really something, I'm not sure how to say it."

And Hyslop isn't the only one who felt they had to act after hearing about Strong's loss.

Staff at Vernon's Discovery Optometry heard the story and set up a GoFundMe for Strong. Kim Schnell said Strong is a client at the optometrist and the staff knew what his trike meant to him.

"We're just inspired by him, he's an amazing man," Schnell said. "His bike is his independence, it's everything to him."

Schnell said Strong uses his bike to cycle to all his appointments whether they be in Vernon, Kelowna or even Coeur d' Alene in Idaho.

While all parties involved are still hopeful that Strong's trike will reappear he now has options if it doesn't.

Hyslop said he has a great deal of respect for Strong and his need for independence.

"I think that getting out and doing (stuff) is a good thing and if the guy's doing on his own I'm on his side," he said.

And Hyslop takes no issue with giving away an expensive piece of kit to a complete stranger.

"A friend in need is a friend indeed. He's just a friend I haven't met yet."

Anyone with any information should about the theft should call Vernon North Okanagan RCMP on 250-545-7171. File number: 2019-9623.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Ben Bulmer or call (250) 309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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