A child’s freedom stolen

The Maple Ridge Kiwanis Club came through for Nicholas Reid

The Maple Ridge Kiwanis Club came through for Nicholas Reid

Thirteen-year-old Nicholas Reid was crushed when he came outside his Maple Ridge home two months ago to find his three-wheeled bike had been stolen.

The bike was specially made for the Grade 7 student at Alouette elementary. He suffers from epilepsy and a coordination disorder. The bike had been donated to him by the Maple Ridge Kiwanis Club.

Because of his condition, Reid can’t ride a normal bicycle. But on the three-wheeler, he can keep up with his friends and his brothers and sisters, and use it to deliver newspapers door-to-door.

“For him, the bike gives him a little bit of freedom, and he really enjoys that,” said Reid’s mother, Nicole L’Abbe. “We talked to Kiwanis because we knew we wouldn’t be able to afford it.”

When the $1,500 bike went missing, L’Abbe called the police. But they had no luck recovering it.

“He was absolutely devastated when it was stolen,” said L’Abbe. “He started to cry, and he doesn’t display a lot of emotion because of his disability.”

Reid blamed himself for not locking the bike up that night.

“When he lost the bike, he lost that freedom,” said L’Abbe. “He couldn’t even deliver the paper by himself anymore.”

L’Abbe called the Maple Ridge Kiwanis Club and told them what had happened, and two weeks ago the local service group replaced Reid’s bike.

“I’ve never seen him so excited,” said L’Abbe. “[Kiwanis] really came through for us, which was just amazing.”

The seven-speed tricycle is fitted with a rear view mirror and a wire bin at the rear to hold Reid’s newspapers for his paper route.

Reid’s new bike even has some improvements from his last one.

“This one has a bell,” he said.