A man who had his bicycle stolen is now using the experience to help less-fortunate children get bikes of their own.
Rob Greenfield only had about 100 possessions to his name when one of his most important items was stolen from him — his bike.
As he was sitting no more than 20 feet away, a thief swiped his bamboo bike from plain sight in Mission Beach.
"All of a sudden I hear a noise behind me and I turn back and I just see my bicycle zooming off with someone on it," Greenfield said.
"My bike was gone.”
Greenfield considers himself a positive person. He has a YouTube channel where he promotes positivity. He has traveled the country trying to perform good deeds for others, usually on that very same bike.
But he called his situation, "soul crushing."
“At first I was pretty distraught, but then I quickly thought, 'How can I turn this negative situation into a good situation?'”
Greenfield says he started to think about others who may have gone through the same thing he did, but may not have the means necessary to replace their bikes.
So he launched a GoFundMe page and created a video to help others out.
"There's a lot of kids out there who have had their bikes stolen, but live in low-income scenarios where they can't get another one," Greenfield said in the video. "So, what I am going to do is raise funds to get 10 bikes for kids who have had their bikes stolen — who have had their souls crushed."
And the plan took off. His page and website raised more than $5 thousand.
Now, Greenfield is preparing to purchase dozens of bikes for children who also experienced getting their bike stolen.
He’s set to deliver them on Tuesday.
And as for the thief?
Rob asked strangers for days if they had seen his distinct bike. They eventually led him to a man known as “Guitar Johnny.”
“Lot of people told me I should beat him up or things like that... but I don't think that is going to solve the problem, " Greenfield said. "I decided to treat him with love and compassion instead.”
Guitar Johnny fessed up and told Greenfield where he could find his bike.
“Before I got my bike back there was part of me that wished I hadn’t got my bike stolen, but then it came back, Greenfield said. "So now I got my bike back and kids are getting bikes, so it really worked out great."