Girl with special needs gets bike of her dreams

Published 06/13 2012 10:54PM

Updated 06/14 2012 12:22PM

CHAMPAIGN -- The freedom of going for a ride is now a reality for a little girl. A Champaign group came to the rescue to help a girl with disabilities get a special bike.

"This bike isn't just fun for her, it's going to help her walk it's going to help her be independent it's going to give her legs," said her mother Shelli Stine.

WCIA-3 News did a story about Stine entering a contest in May. She was trying to win a specialty bike for her daughter, 8-year-old Lilly, who is disabled. They lost the competition but a Champaign group came to the rescue.

Lily has a rare neuro-muscular disorder. Speaking, eating and even walking are a challenge for her. She loves to watch movies and play with her iPad, but it keeps her inside. Now her playground just got bigger.

"Teary-eyed and then she starts displaying those emotions that kids do when they get their bike," said Matthew Barnes, a member of the Greater Champaign County Chapter AMBUCS.

It's a non-profit that helps people with disabilities gain freedom and they gave it to Lily with a special bike. They gave Lily an AmTryke at their lunch-in on Tuesday. The bike is made for people with special needs and has pedals and handle bars to help them ride.

"They hugged her and clapped for her and she was just so proud I couldn't believe how excited she was, and how excited she is," said Stine.

Specialty bikes can range from from $300 to to more than $1,000. The group has donated about 130 bikes to people in the area.

"Watching people just say we support you was the most thrilling part at that point because you never really know that people care until you have an incident like this," said Stine.

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