Volunteer spotlight: Eli and Dave Wuollet
The orange Huffy may not have been noticed amidst the sea of kids bikes in the atrium of Legacy Emanuel Hospital at the 2011 Holiday Bike Drive, but Dave Wuollet spotted it immediately. That’s because it was his son, Eli’s, first bicycle.
Dave and Eli Wuollet began volunteering last February. Dave describes himself as “a bike guy since my childhood,” so when Eli needed to do some volunteer work for school, they started coming to Tuesday Drop-In Night at our bike shop. Dave says that he’s always bonded over bikes with Eli, and now that Eli is living full-time with his mom this is a great way for the two of them to spend time together weekly.
Until this fall, Eli’s old orange Huffy had been resting unused in his grandmother’s garage. When she found out about their volunteer work she brought the bike over to Dave’s house so that they could donate it. They brought it in to a Tuesday Drop-In Night and worked on the bike together.
Dave and Eli were both volunteer mechanics at the Holiday Bike Drive. Dave says that he’s not sure why but he wasn’t expecting to see the bike there. He did see it, however, and he pointed it out to Eli, who got the attention of Sam, a volunteer who was steering kids to mechanic stations. It was an emotional day, as Eli was able to be the mechanic who worked on the bike – his first bike – now the first bike of someone new, a smiling child at the Holiday Bike Drive.
Thank you to Dave and Eli for sharing this heartwarming story with us. We are thrilled that you had the opportunity to pass on the gift of bicycling to a young child.