Friends of Vernon’s Maurice Strong have started a GoFundMe campaign to try and raise money for a new specialty bike for him after his mode of transportation was stolen from his Vernon home earlier this week. (Facebook - photo)

Friends rally for Okanagan man’s stolen bike

GoFundMe page started to help Vernon’s Maurice Strong raise money for new specialty bicycle

To give a sense of how much Maurice Strong’s bike is more than just a bike, he tells the story of how he arrived in Vernon in 2015.

Injured 15 years ago, and suffering a significant brain trauma, Strong has trouble balancing. In 2013, while living in Winnipeg, he bought the specialized yellow bike he uses for transportation while towing his wheelchair behind him.That gives him his independence.

In 2015, Strong rode that same bike across Western Canada when he moved from Winnipeg to Vernon.

RELATED: Specialized bike stolen from disabled Vernon man

“I can’t drive, so I bike,” said Strong, whose cherished, beloved specialty bicycle was stolen from his Alexis Park Drive home sometime between 8:30 p.m. Sunday, and 10:30 a.m. Monday. The bike was under a cover at the rear of his home when it was stolen.

“My legs do the work. I can’t balance,” he said of his ability to ride the bike.

Strong was able to use his wheelchair mid-week, roll to the downtown Vernon bus terminus and hop the bus to go grocery shopping. Friends have offered to pay for taxi service or give him rides to appointments, for which Strong is grateful.

But he wants his bike back.

“I can’t walk or anything,” he said. “It’s not just a bike. It’s pretty much my only way to get anywhere.”

The bike would be very expensive to replace and the theft has left Strong “absolutely devastated,” said his friend Caitlin McKenny in a Facebook post.

Another friend, Kim Schnell, started a GoFundMe page for him on Wednesday—Maurice’s Wheels—with the hope of raising $5,000 to help Strong replace his wheels.

“This bike takes Maurice where his wheelchair cannot,” wrote Schnell. “Maurice, with his adventurous spirit, travels on his bike to his doctors’ appointments in town, (to) Kelowna and (even) as far as Coeur d’ Alene, Idaho.”

The theft was reported to police.

Anyone who sees the bike, or someone with it, is asked to call 250-542-2834 or 250-306-6769.



roger@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

QUIZ: A celebration of apples

September is the start of the apple harvest

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 20 to 26

Rabbit Day, Hobbit Day and One-Hit Wonder Day are all coming up this week

Interior Health reports three additional COVID-19 cases in region

The number of cases in the region since the beginning of the pandemic are now at 492

COVID-19 minimizes Okanagan Regional Library budget increase

Library adapts to pandemic fiscal disruptions

Interior Health continues to tackle COVID-19

IH president Susan Brown says don’t become complacent about pandemic

B.C. or Ontario? Residential school survivors fight move of court battle

It’s now up to Ontario’s Court of Appeal to sort out the venue question

B.C. transportation minister will not seek re-election

Claire Trevena has held the position since 2017

Squabble over mask policy at LUSH in Kelowna mall

The woman filmed the encounter at LUSH Cosmetics, where wearing a mask in-store is company policy

Cops For Kids ride wraps in Okanagan

No pomp, no circumstance for end of milestone 20th anniversary fundraising bicycle trip

Former Kelowna cop faces fourth lawsuit alleging sexual assault

Ex-Mountie Brian Mathew Burkett is also separately facing seven charges of breach of trust

Province opens ‘middle income’ housing in Kelowna

Prices on the units are $1,300 for a one-bedroom and $1,780 for a two-bedroom, nearing area-average prices

Young B.C. cancer survivor rides 105-km with Terry Fox’s brother

Jacob Bredenhof and Darrell Fox’s cycling trek raises almost $90,000 for cancer research

B.C. migrant, undocumented workers rally for permanent residency program

Rally is part of the Amnesty for Undocumented Workers Campaign led by the Migrant Workers Centre

Reward offered for return of Okanagan puppy

An 11-week-old boxer-mastiff cross pup was allegedly taken from its Kelowna Friday, Sept. 18

Most Read