Custom mobility bike returned after London, Ont. owner discovers it for sale online – CTV News London

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A university student in London, Ont. now has her “freedom, safety and legs” back after police retrieved a stolen mobility bike from an online seller.

“It feels amazing,” said Haven Raeburn-Gibson, a student at Kings University College (KUC) “Honestly, when we got it back, we went on a walk and it honestly took me a few minutes to process that this was the one that had been lost.”

Raeburn-Gibson, 21 had her walking-aid stolen from the back of her family’s vehicle, while out celebrating the seven-year anniversary of her being cancer free. She thought it was gone for good.

However, her friend sent her a link to what looked like her bike on Facebook Marketplace.

“I remember right when I was seeing the pictures, I felt like, in a good way, as if I were going to throw up,” said Raeburn-Gibson. “We had my handles done custom, so from the moment I saw them I knew it was mine.”

Haven said it took all her will power not to wake her parents up at 12:30 a.m. when her friend sent her the online ad. However, she told her parents first thing in the morning.

A screenshot of a former online ad for an Alinker bicycle was selling Haven Raeburn-Gibson’s stolen mobility bike (Brent Lale/CTV News London)“We had contacted the police early Friday morning because Haven’s friend had given us a tip that it was for sale on Marketplace,” said Kimberley Raeburn-Gibson, Haven’s mother.

“We called the police and they said they couldn’t promise anything but they would do their best. Then we got home early Friday afternoon and there was a call from London police asking if we were home and saying they were on the way.”

An officer delivered the bike to their home Friday afternoon.

With a condition similar to Arthrogryposis, Haven has limited mobility, and uses the three-wheel bike to help her walk.

“I rely on my mobility bike daily when I’m going between classes or just walking around campus,” she told CTV News.

Custom grips on the handlebars helped identify Haven Raeburn-Gibson’s stolen mobility bike from an online sales ad (Brent Lale/CTV News London)The family was thankful that KUC had an emergency fund, and purchased a replacement for Haven to use when the bike was stolen. She now has a backup bike.

“We’re still really grateful for the replacement, and I don’t even really know how to put it into words,” she said.

Going forward, the family plans on taking more precautions when it comes to the security of the bike.

“We will have a lock around it at all times even in our yard,” said Kimberley. “I guess we thought it was so distinctive. Who would ever steal such a thing? And then we got our answer.” 

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