86-year-old Derby man helps homeless with restored bikes

KSN Digital Extra

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – An 86-year-old Derby man has turned his garage into a bike repair shop to give back to Wichita’s homeless.

“It started as a hobby, and it just kind of grew from there,” said Jim ‘The Bike Man’ Ramsey.

Ramsey is a retired school teacher who has spent the last 20 years fixing up broken bikes. He spends hours of his free time troubleshooting, repairing and cleaning used bikes, making them as good as new to give to those in need to help them get around.

“They’re thrilled to death to get a bike,” said Ramsey. “You can go a lot further on a bicycle even though you have to peddle it, it goes further and a lot easier than having to walk 3 or 4 miles.”

Ramsey said while he does take pride in seeing bikes on the street that he’s brought back to life, he is even happier that the old bicycles are providing temporary transportation.

“Some of them work and that gives them something to use to get back and forth until they can get a car,” said Ramsey.

Ramsey donates the repaired bikes to the Center of Hope to pass out to those who need or would like a bike. He said he and three other bike repairmen have always donated to the organization and while he is the only left who is still able to fix and donate the bikes, he doesn’t plan on stopping anytime soon.

“As long as I am alive, I’ll stay with it. Right now I’m doing alright. Right now I’m 86 and I am planning on living to be 100,” said Ramsey.

The Center of Hope is still accepting bikes, if you’d like to donate a used bike you can contact the organization at: (316) 267-0222.

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