Mid-Life Cycling

Mid-Life Cycling

08 July 2017

A Worker Rewards Hard Work--With A Bicycle

Perhaps you frequent a store or cafe and see the same person behind the counter every time.  Maybe you've progressed beyond exchanging pleasantries and have come to know something about that person who makes your coffee or sells you a newspaper or stamps.  

Yes, such things happen here in New York.  But I'm sure they happen even more frequently in some smaller towns.  


While it's nice to get to know that person who makes your sandwich, doing so can also be a little sad:  That person might be doing it because of some unfortunate circumstance.  And getting to that counter every day could be a job in itself.


Such was the case of Johnny Phillips.  Every day, he walked two hours to the Circle K market in Springfield, Illinois, where he worked a ten-hour shift.  Then he walked two hours to go home.


Jim Copeland learned of his story because he stops at that Circle K store every night, on his way to work.  He knew that Phillips "had to walk through a bad neighborhood" and figured that "if he did all that, he was really dedicated."  So, Copeland thought, "maybe I could help him."


On his way to work, an idea popped into Copeland's head:  "What if I could find a decent bike at a decent price?" So he went--where else?--to Craigslist, where he found a suitable machine. He took it to a "bike nut" friend, who oiled the chain and adjusted the brakes.


On Monday, Copeland brought the bike to the store's parking lot, told Phillips to close his eyes and handed him his new mode of transportation.  One can only imagine the emotions Phillips must have felt, some of which showed on his face.





For his part, Copeland drives a truck for a postal service contractor, so I suspect he knows a thing or two about work and dedication!

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