By Brice Minnigh
When Codey Durham found out his three beloved bikes had been stolen from his backyard in Buena Park, California, he was devastated. The 16-year-old—who in childhood had been told by doctors that he might never be able to walk due to a near-paralyzing cyst in his back—battled against his misfortune, learning not only how to walk, but how to ride bikes.
Having saved up for years to build his three-strong quiver of Diamondback bicycles, he was despondent after they were stolen, and his family made impassioned public appeals for their return.
When key members of Diamondback's marketing team heard the news late last week, they decided they must do something to help. The company's marketing manager, Jon Kennedy, called the Buena Park Police Department for more information, and ended up flying down to the Southern California city yesterday from the company's Seattle headquarters to surprise Durham with replacements.
"The police told me that a lot of people had called in offering to donate money to buy the kid new bikes," Kennedy told Bike magazine. "I told him they should tell the people to start a fund to help with Durham's medical bills, and to let us take care of replacing the bikes."
The police asked Durham to come to the station on November 7 to provide them with more information on the stolen bikes, but when the teenager arrived he was surprised to meet Kennedy, who had brought along a new replacement for one bike—built up courtesy of Pat's 605 Cyclery in Norwalk, California.
Kennedy also gave Durham a Diamondback catalog, from which he was instructed to choose two more replacement rigs.
"It felt really good to do it," said Kennedy. "The kid obviously worked really hard to buy those bikes, and it was easy enough for us to fix it.
"It's not all about selling bikes," he added. "It's about doing the right thing."
Check out the video of the surprise presentation, courtesy of KABC-TV Los Angeles: