Janesville boy finds girl's missing tricycle

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Shelly Birkelo
Monday, May 26, 2014

JANESVILLE--What began as a sad story this holiday weekend had a happy ending.

A tricycle made for an 8-year-old Janesville girl with special needs was stolen Friday night from her family's front porch in the 600 block of Cherry Street.

But 24 hours later, the tricycle was found by Parker High School student Dave Moore, said John Krueger, the girl's father.

When the tricycle and his daughter were reunited, it brought tears to Krueger's eyes.

“She jumped up and down and started screaming and crying: 'My bike! My bike! It's back,'" he said.

Krueger and his fiancÚ, Amanda Swangstu, made a plea through Facebook for help finding the bike.

The plea paid off.

Moore and his parents were passing through the area of Milton and Atwood Avenues about 11 p.m. Saturday when he saw two boys between the ages of 12 and 14 dump the bike and take off running, Krueger said.

Moore called police and notified Krueger through Facebook that the tricycle had been found.

Krueger met with Moore and a Janesville police officer, picked up the bike and took it home.

The family was at a bonfire with friends and neighbors trying to take their minds off the missing tricycle when Krueger received the good news.

Brian Reece of Bike Elves in Beloit took about six weeks to build the tricycle from the parts of several bicycles.

Krueger and Swangstu's daughter only had the bike for a month.

The girl is autistic and suffers from low muscle tone, and she was heartbroken that her bike was missing, Swangstu said.

Reece had just put new white tires on the bike Friday. The girl was at school and didn't get a chance to ride it again before it was stolen, Krueger said.

Editor's note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly reported Dave Moore's school. He is a freshman at Parker High School.

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