IB community steps up to help bike theft victim

SAN DIEGO -- A new resident was surprised to see how quickly the South Bay community stepped up to help him after his bike -- and only mode of transportation -- was stolen.

Eddy Carrasquillo and his family are fairly new to the Imperial Beach community.

“I’m a tattoo artist. So I had to come try the tattoo scene. We’re from Massachusetts,” Carrasquillo said.

To get here they sold nearly everything. When they finally arrived their car broke down. Bicycling has become Carrasquillo's only way to work.

“I ride the bike everyday. I work six days a week. It’s about a half hour there, half hour back and I even use it for groceries,” Carrasquillo said.

Carrasquillo said his bike was recently stolen outside a Chula Vista grocery store. He said he saved up money for at least three months to buy it.

"The fact that it took me longer to save [for it], than almost I’ve had to actually have the bike, it was gut wrenching. I didn’t know what to do. I was so upset,” Carrasquillo said.

Carrasquillo broke down and took to Facebook to ask for help. In a post he explained the situation and wrote, "I was wondering if anyone would be willing to donate a bicycle. I do not have any cash but may be able to offer a tattoo gift card from a professional shop. If anyone can help me out I would greatly appreciate it. Please and thank you in advance."

Carrasquillo said instantly people responded and until now he has gone through some 100 messages. People offered him all kinds of bikes and some even offered to buy him a brand new one. Ultimately he decided to take one from a man named Don.

“This guy he told me he was getting ready to dump it. It was just in storage. I didn’t need a new bike. I just needed something to get me to and from,” Carrasquillo said. “I love it. It’s actually pretty smooth. He put a new tire on it for me."

Carrasquillo smiles when he looks at the bike because to him it is a gift that says a lot about his new community.

“It makes me happy. It makes me happy there’s nice people out here,” Carrasquillo said.

The man who gave the bike to Carrasquillo did not want to go on camera, but told FOX 5 he was happy to give it to him and hopes he is enjoying it.

Carrasquillo plans to eventually buy another bike.  Before he was recently gifted a bike he set up a gofundme page.