Central staff give student new bike after theft | Education | newspressnow.com

2022-09-03 00:32:34 By : Ms. XIE NINA

Thunderstorms likely. Low 63F. Winds S at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 90%..

Thunderstorms likely. Low 63F. Winds S at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 90%.

Jesse Summers, a sophomore at Central High School, shows off his new Trek Marlin 5, a 21-speed mountain bicycle, on Thursday at the school.

Assistant Principal Jon Salanky speaks Thursday about a successful effort by his Central High School staff to pool resources and buy Jesse Summers a bike.

Jesse Summers checks the steel cable lock for his new Trek Marlin 5 21-speed mountain bicycle on Thursday at Central High School.

Local school staff buys student a new bike after it was stolen

Local school staff buys student a new bike after it was stolen

Jesse Summers, a sophomore at Central High School, shows off his new Trek Marlin 5, a 21-speed mountain bicycle, on Thursday at the school.

Assistant Principal Jon Salanky speaks Thursday about a successful effort by his Central High School staff to pool resources and buy Jesse Summers a bike.

Jesse Summers checks the steel cable lock for his new Trek Marlin 5 21-speed mountain bicycle on Thursday at Central High School.

Jesse Summers made it three days into his sophomore year before someone cut the chain securing his bicycle outside Central High School and made off with his only independent way of getting home.

The loss was significant: an Iron Horse performance mountain bike, of the kind not manufactured since that company’s sale in 2009. Summers has been riding it to and from school for years and also on local paths and trails with his friends. But fortunately, because of the support of people who care about him at the school, this story has a positive ending.

“I was just in class (last week) and they called up for whoever rides bikes,” Summers said. “I thought we were just gonna move our bikes or something. And then, it was gone.”

Assistant Principal Jon Salanky investigated and deemed the bike unlikely to be recovered, as security cameras did not clearly capture the thief and there are no known witnesses. So Salanky, himself an avid cyclist, started a donation fund among Central staff and contacted a friend, general manager Blake Hoppe of Horizon Cycling on the Belt Highway, to work out a way to make Summers whole.

“We all kind of rallied around one of our own to make sure something good happened,” Salanky said.

Salanky said Summers is beloved at Central for his positive attitude and dedication as a student, and the money quickly became available to not only replace the bike but acquire a significant upgrade: a 21-speed Trek Marlin 5, designed for the enthusiast trail rider and beginner off-road athlete. Hoppe made arrangements for the store to assume a share of the cost to ensure Summers would not be left long without transportation.

“We decided that we wanted to split the cost with everyone who donated to the account so that Jesse could get a nicer bike than he originally had,” Hoppe said. “I feel that it’s important to encourage anyone to commute by bicycle, especially our youth.”

With this bike being nicer than the last, measures have been taken to guard against further theft. Students are encouraged to lock up their bikes right outside the Central Freshman Annex front door, the most commonly used entrance by the circle drive. Between the higher possibility someone will see something and a steel cable interwoven in the frame, Summers feels confident he won’t become a victim again. But that’s for the future.

What matters now is the cherished support he has received from his teachers in the name of something he loves.

“It makes an impact on me because it allows me to hang out with friends and ride around again, and on a lot better bike than I had before,” Summers said. “The gears are a lot nicer, it rides a lot smoother. I’m thankful to the school and to Horizon Cycling for being able to provide the bike. Thanks for helping me out.”

Marcus Clem can be reached at marcus.clem@newspressnow.com. Follow him on Twitter: @NPNowClem

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