Local News

As family struggles with cancer diagnosis, Raleigh officer replaces their daughter's stolen bicycle

Posted January 23, 2019 9:56 p.m. EST
Updated January 23, 2019 10:34 p.m. EST

A Raleigh family has renewed hope when a Raleigh police officer stepped in unexpectedly after their daughter’s bicycle was stolen.

The Horton family had experienced a cancer diagnosis and financial hardships when their daughter’s bicycle, which had been a Christmas present, was taken from their front porch.

Payton Horton vows to ride her bicycle every day that she possibly can, but just days ago she didn’t know if she’d get a chance to ride another one anytime soon.

The family of five had come home from church Sunday to find that Payton’s bicycle was gone.

“Her riding glove was in the yard and I kind of looked around for a minute and tried to figure out why her riding glove was in the yard and looked up on the porch and the bike was gone,” Peyton’s mother, Carol Horton, said.

The entire family felt devastated, angry and hurt.

“I didn’t have any words, because it was so devastating,” Payton said.

The theft was just another blow to what had been an extremely hard season in life.

“My husband was diagnose with stage four pancreatic cancer. We’ve since learned that it’s actually not pancreatic cancer, it’s something completely different that’s giving him a better life expectancy,” Horton said.

Just a few hours after the Hortons reported the bicycle theft, a Raleigh police officer made a case to his supervisor to put a smile back on Payton’s face.

“He said, ‘I want to buy her a bike. I want to go to Dick’s and I want to get the bike for her and see if we can take it over to her,’” Sgt. Peter Manukas said. “It’s an easy thing for a supervisor, at that point. You just let them run with it.”

Just like that, a negative situation had turned into a positive one.

“God takes care of us. He’s with us. He will always take a negative situation and he’ll make it positive for us,” Horton said.

The bicycle that had been stolen was given to Payton by Triangle Spokes, an organization that wanted to step in to help her deal with the difficulty of her dad’s cancer diagnosis.