Joe Coccagna, left, is raising money for Fritz, who had his bike stolen in 2018. Coccagna unknowingly bought the bike from Facebook marketplace, and the two met recently while he was out on a ride through Fernwood. (Photo contributed by Joe Coccagna)

VIDEO: Victoria man’s stolen bike pedals full circle

Man unknowingly buys stolen bike, starts fundraiser for new one

A Victoria man is flipping the script on an unusual story of a stolen bike.

Joe Coccagna was out on an pedal around Fernwood, when he had a chance encounter with a man named Fritz.

“I stopped with my bike outside where Fritz worked, and he kind of looked at me funny, and did a second look at the bike,” said Coccagna. “Then he came up and asked me a few questions, and we realized that the bike actually used to be his, but it was stolen in 2018.”

Coccagna, who recently moved to Victoria to study, said he bought the bike from Facebook marketplace from another person, who he doesn’t believe stole the bike either.

“I think the bike must have had a couple different owners before it reached me,” said Coccagna.

Feeling bothered by what had happened to Fritz, Coccagna wanted to do something to help; he decided to start a fundraiser to buy Fritz a new bike.

“I wanted to try and find a solution where everyone was happy, so no one would have to lose,” said Coccagna. “I’ve only been here for a short time, but I have a bit of a social network, and I have my network back home in Ontario, so I thought I could do my best to come up with a new bike for him.”

ALSO READ: Police respond to successful Facebook scam on Oak Bay resident

Coccagna put together a few videos to help promote the fundraiser that runs until the end of July. Half of the proceeds will go towards the Black Health Alliance.

“Fritz is studying to be a paramedic, and he is wired to help others. I think he was a bit uncomfortable with having someone do this for him, so he asked to have half of the money donated to a local cause,” Coccagna said.

Black Health Alliance is a charity that helps to improve the health and well-being of Black communities in Canada, focusing on building connected communities, anti-racism, and healthy inequalities.

“Over the past couple of months it’s been incredible to see communities rally for those in need. It’s brought out the best in ourselves and our communities,” Coccagna stated on the fundraiser page.

For more information visit fundrazr.com/blitzforfritz.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

CyclingVictoria

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Sooke minor hockey set to get kids on ice by mid-September

President says re-opening dependent on SEAPARC installing ice in time

Gathering marks 10 years since nearly 500 asylum-seekers landed off Victoria shore

The 492 people fleeing violence, war crimes and genocide in Sri Lanka were detained for months

VicPD responding to robbery suspect barricaded in building on Cook Street

Residents are asked to avoid the 2300-block of Cook Street

UPDATED: Young deckhands backed out of fatal Arctic Fox II trip just before fishboat departed

Inexperienced twin brothers had ‘gut feeling’ and bailed before going to open ocean

Edward Milne students clean up Whiffen Spit

Volunteers find styrofoam, cigarette butts and a single shoe

B.C. records new COVID-19 death, 85 more cases; Horgan calls on celebrity help

This brings the total number of active confirmed cases to 531 across the province

Watchdog clears Okanagan RCMP in death of man after arrest over alleged stolen pizzas

The man died in hospital after having difficulty breathing and broken ribs

Have you seen Berleen? B.C. pig destined for sanctuary goes missing

Berleen was less than two weeks from travelling to Manitoba when she vanished

Health Canada says several kids hospitalized after eating edible pot products

People warned not to store cannabis products where children can find them

‘It’s not just about me’: McKenna cites need to protect politicians from threats

Police investigation was launched after someone yelled obscenities at a member of McKenna’s staff

Michigan plans dedicated road lanes for autonomous vehicles

First study of its kind in the U.S. to figure out whether existing lanes or shoulders could be used

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Aug. 11

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Filmmaker James Cameron’s Comox Valley winery up for sale

The director behind The Terminator and Titanic puts Beaufort Winery on the market after six years

B.C. announces multi-year plan to double treatment beds for youth with addiction

This will bring the total number of new beds specific to those 12 to 24 years old to 247 province-wide

Most Read