'Bicycle Man' legacy program prepares to hand out 1,500 bicycles, helmets this weekend

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (WTVD) -- A Fayetteville widow continues her husband's legacy as she and her volunteers prepare nearly 1,500 bicycles for their yearly give-away this weekend.

The 'Bicycle Man' Community Outreach is now hitting its 30th year in operation.

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Its humble beginnings started in Ann Mathis and her late-husband Moses's home.

Moses wanted to provide bikes to children in the neighborhood during Christmas time; however, that small act of compassion transformed into full operation.

"I'm trying, haha. I'm trying and I have a lot of help," Mathis said.

Moses passed away in 2013, giving away around 30,000 bikes in his lifetime to kids in the Fayetteville Area.

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In the last six years, Miss Mathis has continued to carry that torch.

Students, within surrounding school systems, will be able to pick their own bike on Saturday morning, if they received a certificate from social work.

"I can hear him saying, 'Ann, you did it, girl. You did it, girl!"

The couple's love for the community is contagious, inspiring many groups and organizations to donate.

Members from the Fort Bragg Defense Military Pay stopped by on Wednesday morning to deliver a couple of dozen bikes and helmets.

"Try to do something good for them. We can't fix all the problems, but we can at least for one day make someone happy," Hector Monterro said.

Though the preparation comes with a great deal of stress, Miss Mathis sees herself putting this program together for the rest of her life.

"As long as I can get up in the morning, put one foot in front of the other, it will be open," Mathis said.

The outreach is still accepting donations in the form of new bikes or used bikes in good condition.

Items can be dropped off at 1800 Wynfare Drive by Friday.

The giveaway is set to begin on Saturday at 9 a.m. at that same address.
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