After a man's wheelchair is stolen, a dark day and then a precious gift

After a man's wheelchair is stolen, a dark day and then a precious gift

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The call went out and it was answered.

Earlier this week, Hawaii News Now reported on a disabled Kalihi man who had his wheelchair stolen from his apartment building on McNeil Street in Kalihi.

And now, there's a happy ending.

After media reports aired Monday, three donors quickly responded to Raymond Tavita's pleas.

At state Rep. John Mizuno's office on Wednesday, the 23-year-old was presented with two wheelchairs to replace his stolen one. There was a brand new one and a donated electric wheelchair.

"When John Mizuno was like, here you go, this is your wheelchair, it opened up a door for me and was lightness that has been shone onto the darkest days of my life, to be honest." said Tavita, who lives in Kalihi.

The non-motorized wheelchair retails for $3,000.00, And the donated, previously owned, electric wheelchair is valued at $3,600.

Bill Vandenhurk of Aloha KIA and the owner of Aloha Auto Group.Ltd. paid for half the costs of the new, non-motorized wheelchair. Howard Higa, president of The Cab, paid for the other half. And Pacific Medical provided the wheelchair at a reduced price.

Mizuno said an elderly woman from Waianae donated the electric wheelchair that she said she no longer needed.

"You begin to think about how lucky we are. But how could somebody steal a wheelchair from somebody? This is just unbelievable," Vandenhurk said.

"Its just a whole emotional thing for me," said Higa, "We're so fortunate, we can walk, I have a business, and can enjoy paradise. But there are other people who live in paradise but cannot enjoy paradise."

Tavita suffers from spina bifida, and relies on the wheelchair to help him get around as a street performer in Waikiki.

Mizuno said since the story of Tavita's plight aired on Monday, his office has had over 40 people commit to donating a wheelchair to Tavita.

Copyright 2017 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.