Matthew Wondra loves riding his bicycle around his Granite City, Illinois, neighborhood, so he was crushed when it was recently stolen. He cherished the bike, which was a gift from his late father, but the kindness of a stranger brought him a new one.
The 31-year-old has a rare genetic disease called Lowe Syndrome, which causes brain abnormalities, weak muscle tone and eye problems, so he rides a special, three-wheeled bike. Matthew’s sister posted about the stolen bike on a community Facebook page, where Venessa Duckett saw it and decided to help. “I wasn’t going to scroll past that without doing something,” she explains.
She bought a new bike for Matthew, even though they had never met. Duckett says “it just seemed like the right thing to do,” adding that people in their town helped her out when she was a kid in need. “I didn’t think of it so much as paying something forward, but paying it back,” she says. “If we all make each other's life a little bit easier could you imagine what kind of world it would be?”