LOUISVILLE, Colo. (KDVR) — As often happens after tragedies, the Louisville and Superior communities have really come together.
Louisville Cyclery has been here for 42 years. Once they realized the shop survived the Marshall Fire, they had to do something to help. The owner and staff decided to give back.
“It didn’t feel like a choice, honestly. We had an opportunity to do something, and this is what we thought we could do a pretty good job with,” owner Gregory Jones said.
They are accepting donations of new or like-new bikes and toys. On the first day, they collected more than 65 bikes, which they are fixing up and giving to fire victims.
“We have a team of mechanics in the back, going through the bikes, fixing them up, getting them ready. We put blue tape on them when they’re ready to go so they know they can just take it and go. We try to make it easy for them,” Jones said.
They are also collecting toys and already have enough to fill a 20-foot trailer, which they have turned into a toy shop so kids can go shopping.
“It’s hard. You can see the look in their eyes. There’s no way to not be impacted by that,” Jones said.
They want fire victims to know they can come by and pick out some toys or a bike.
“Not being an expert in this, the hardest part is letting people know we have this and they can use it. I know it’s really hard for people to ask for help or even take help when it’s right in front of them, but we’re trying to make it as easy as possible,” Jones said.
Christopher Jewett and his family lost everything in the fire.
“It was scary. There was smoke everywhere, you could barely see. I ended up going back to get some stuff and was just able to get some computers,” Jewett said.
He was not able to save the bicycle that he used to get around at college, so he stopped by Louisville Cyclery and picked out a new one.
“I think it’s awesome. It means so much. I’m not the only person who lost everything, so I think it’s really awesome everyone is helping out,” Jewett said.
Jones said it is heartbreaking to hear the stories, but also heartwarming to see so many people being so generous during this time of great need.
“The community has really, really come together. It’s amazing,” Jones said.
They are trying to make it as easy as possible for people to get on the path to recovery.
“I think it’s really awesome. It really shows this is a community we are here,” Jewett said. “Just thank you to everybody who has been helping. I really appreciate it,” he added.
Louisville Cyclery is still taking donations of bikes and toys. They will use their old building to store donations when they run out of room.