DURAND RESIDENT ANTHONY STRANDENBERG took his first-ever bicycle ride Monday, June 30, thanks to the collaborative charitable effort of the Durand Lion and Lioness clubs, the Lennon Lions, and Shriners International. Anthony is autistic, which makes it next to impossible for him to balance on a two-wheeled bike, so the groups teamed up to purchase a tricycle from House of Wheels in Owosso and delivered it to Anthony at his home. The idea of giving Anthony the tricycle was initiated by the Lennon Lions, who then approached the Durand groups for assistance.
Anthony, who will begin sixth grade at the Shiawassee RESD this fall, is a model student and loves school, according to his parents, who also noted that Anthony has been named Student of the Month three times. One of Anthony’s teachers, Mary Rheaume, was on hand for the presentation of the bike, and her emotions nearly got the best of her as she watched her former student receive his first bike.
Lennon Lions 2nd Vice Chairman Scott Breece delivered the tricycle to the Strandberg home, and Durand Lioness President Martha Owens and 2nd Vice President Jenifer Owens helped present the bike to the appreciative youngster. Anthony could hardly contain his excitement as the tricycle was lifted onto the ground and wheeled over to him, and though he is a man of few words, he clearly and joyfully exclaimed, “I love my bike” after being helped onto the seat for the first time by his parents.
Anthony is shown here with his mother, JoAnn, and father, Dale, who both helped Anthony get accustomed to climbing onto and riding his new tricycle. Dale said he is looking forward to riding bikes with Anthony around their neighborhood, and the sporty, yellow three-wheeler is sure to turn heads. (Courtesy Photo)