DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – A Dallas man competing in his first Ironman triathlon had his training put on hold after someone stole a bike he was using. The bike belonged to his late father.
Stiles Harper is less than a week away from competing in the Ironman triathlon in Houston. He’s been training for six months and planned to ride his father’s bike.
“He’s owned the bike almost 20 years. It was a classic Eddy Merckx. Very special in the family,” said Harper.
Dallas police are now investigating after someone swiped Harper’s bike from the back of his SUV early Tuesday morning.
“I saw the cable and lock cut, in the middle of the street. My heart dropped. I knew what had happened,” said Harper.
He decided to ride his father’s bike to honor him after he passed away in an accident last August.
Harper is spreading the word in person and online. He printed out fliers, passed them out and even dropped one off at a pawn shop in case it ever turns up.
There’s been an outpouring of support from people offering their bikes for Harper to use on Saturday for the Ironman triathlon.
Harper and his wife hope the bike turns up soon.
“It was a very important possession of his, but the realization that being on the bike doesn’t make me closer to him. He’ll be with me regardless,” said Harper.
Harper said he will probably rent a bike from a local store in order to race this Saturday in Houston.