Responses pour in after On Your Side report profiling man's bike troubles
UPDATE: Numerous offers of new bikes and monetary donations poured in after On Your Side highlighted Eric Schmidley's story Wednesday night.
On Thursday, a gracious stranger dropped off a brand new bike and we presented it to him later that same afternoon.
"I figured maybe one or two people, but not this," Schmidley said as he received his new bike. "To all those wanting and willing to help, I appreciate you."
See the original story below:
BATON ROUGE - A man's source of transportation was destroyed by a CATS bus. Now he's fighting for a new bicycle.
Eric Schmidley tells 2 On Your Side his bike is totaled after it fell off the front of a bus and into the street.
"All of a sudden, it just pops up off the bike rack and it gets run over by the bus," he said.
The bike is four years old and has ridden a lot of miles. Schmidley bought it about four years ago for his main form of transportation. He rides the bike everywhere.
"To go to church, to go to work, go to the grocery store," he said. "It's really hard to get around."
Last month, Schmidley says he was on CATS bus route 18, LSU/Cortana, driving along Corporate Boulevard when it happened. Having ridden the bus for years with his bike in tow, he says he's never experienced anything like this.
"I was just shocked; that's never happened before," he said.
The damage to the bike is extensive. The front handlebars are twisted, the rear wheel does not turn, the front wheel is bent, his flashlight is broken and one of the pedals fell off.
"The spokes are just completely off," he said.
Schmidley, who lives about two miles from work, says he'd really like his bike replaced. But buying a new one isn't in his budget right now.
Wednesday afternoon, CATS responded to WBRZ concerning Schmidley's incident. CATS says it has received preliminary information regarding what happened and it is under investigation by staff.