Community responds after teen’s bike is stolen

A social media post about a teenager whose bicycle was stolen from a shopping center parking lot went viral earlier this week, and the result was that in less than two hours, the teen had a new bike.

Carolyn Pruett pulled into the parking lot of the Chisholm Trail shopping center Tuesday evening and found her 18-year-old special needs son, David, frantically looking for his bike, which he had left about an hour earlier while he went into one of the businesses.

When he returned, the bike was missing.

“I knew something was wrong. I knew something had happened to his bike,” she said.

Pruett immediately posted the theft on social media, and the response was immediate with dozens of people offering to help purchase a new bike.

Those who responded included Barbara McElhaney, whose son Braedon Brown is celebrating his birthday this weekend at Knock-Out Bullying’s Fishing With Friends event.

Braedon, 12, has asked that in lieu of presents, those attending his party give donations to Knock-Out Bullying.

McElhaney said when she heard about the theft of the bike, she had to do something.

She gave David a new-to-him bike.

“We love our community and I knew I had to do something,” she said.

McElhaney said the bike, which was almost new, was sitting in their garage unused.

“The post said it was her special needs son. This one just struck home. I couldn’t not do anything. I knew I had to fix it any way I could,” she said.

So, they loaded up the bike and took it to the Pruett home.

Pruett said she was surprised at the response.

“All of this happened in less than two hour,” she said. “This lady I did not know, she messaged me and offered him the bike.”

The bike does need a chain, but David will put in a little sweat equity to earn that.

Otherwise, it is near new condition.

“Ever who stole the bike did us a favor,” Pruett said.

The community’s response did not surprise Pruett.

“I am not surprised by what we’ve experience. You don’t expect it, but it is nice,” she said.

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