Ruthless thieves have stolen a specially adapted bike belonging to a local disabled child, depriving him of his one form of regular exercise and jeopardising his future ability to walk.
Eight years-old Travis McColgan from Slievemore Park has Duchenne Muscular Dystroph, a progressive disorder which will most likely claim his life before he reaches his mid 20s.
Last weekend thieves took Travis’ specially constructed trike from the garden of his home, which he shares with his parents and older brother Evan.
The bike - which is worth an estimated £1000 - was donated to Travis by Tesco when they supported Action Duchenne.
Travis’ father Darren explained: “The bike was in the back garden and it was taken at around 2pm on Saturday.
“It’s obvious to anyone looking at it that it is a special bike; it would be of no use to anyone else but it is absolutely vital to Travis.”
Travis’ condition has progressed so that he can no longer walk long distances without being forced to rely on a wheelchair or his bike.
“Travis can’t play like other boys. He can’t run and he can’t get out and kick a football.
“The bike allowed him to get out and about. It also allowed him to exercise his legs. “Even when he has no power in them himself, the pedals are powered so they keep his muscles moving.
“Without this Travis could lose his ability to walk years before he needs to.”
The family are hoping the thieves see the error of their ways and return the bike to Travis or that anyone with information about its whereabouts can come forward.
“We are angry and we are upset,” Darren told the ‘Derry Journal’. “We do our best for Travis.
“They have taken away something vital to our son’s continued health.”
Anyone with information about the bike is asked to contact the police, or contact Darren through the Derry Journal.