Generosity remedies thieves’ meanness
Craig Lozell realised how low some people can stoop when his 6-year-old daughter’s brand new bike was stolen out of their garage.
But what followed showed him just how far others will go to make it right.
Olivia Lozell used to leave her bike, her sixth birthday present, out on the lawn all night.
‘‘One night I said ‘You need to put it in the shed or it will get pinched’,’’ Mr Lozell said.
That night Olivia listened to her father but the effort did not pay off.
The next morning she went out to find her bike missing.
‘‘We could see tyre tracks and footsteps on the grass so we knew someone had taken it over the fence.’’
Mr Lozell said he was furious and took to Facebook to let the rest of Tokoroa know how disappointed he was.
‘‘It wasn’t an appeal, it was a show of disgust . . . how could someone stoop so low and come on to someone’s property and take something that those people have worked so hard to get?’’
It was not long before Mr Lozell received a private message from a woman insisting she help him and his partner Kelly Herekiuha replace their daughter’s bike.
Miss Herekiuha said the generous woman had suffered a similar problem earlier in the year.
Her son’s bike had been stolen over- night and it was through Facebook that she got the message out and eventually had it returned.
‘‘I guess it’s the whole paying it forward concept.’’
The woman told them to pick a bike out, which they did, and the next day they found a $200 deposit had been made on it.
‘‘That was a huge help,’’ Miss Herekiuha said. ‘‘ That’s a lot of money, especially at this time of the year.’’
The pair had other private donations enabling them to replace Olivia’s $300 bike, spending less than $70 themselves.
‘‘What they did, it didn’t break our stride it made us go harder. It showed us that the community is not all bad. There are genuine people out there willing to help others.’’
Early Christmas: Olivia Lozell, 6, thanks the generosity of Tokoroa for replacing her stolen bike.