INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - An Indianapolis man hopes to reunite a wounded veteran with an electric scooter found along the side of I-69 over the weekend.
Tony Cline says he saw the scooter on the side of the interstate, just south of Anderson on Sunday. Cline says he is a scrapper and would normally hope to sell such a machine for parts.
“If it’s worth stopping, I’ll stop and pick it up,” Cline said. “And if it’s got extra value, I’ll take it apart.”
Based on the damage to the front end and wheel of the scooter, Cline believes it fell off the back of somebody’s vehicle as they were driving northbound on I-69. The back end, motor and battery could likely be sold, Cline says.
But after getting a close-up look at the scooter, he changed his mind.
“I wasn’t going to do that after I seen it has a ‘Wounded Warrior’ sticker on it,” Cline said. “Reminds me of my grandfather.”
Cline says his grandfather served in the U.S. Marines and lost one of his legs. He’s seen first-hand how much a scooter like the one he found can change someone’s life.
“Hard for him to walk around and get places he wanted to go.” Cline said. “And then when he got his wheelchair, it made it a lot easier.”
Instead of scrapping the scooter, Cline loaded it into his SUV and bought it home. He has spent the last couple days calling area police and fire departments and posting on social media, hoping to find the person who lost it.
“Because the person is more likely dependent on this chair.” Cline said. “And they need it to move around and get places they normally can’t walk to.”
Using the serial number and other identifiers, efforts are now underway through the veterans affairs office to return the scooter to its rightful owner.
Damaged or not, Cline says he’ll keep the scooter until that reunion can take place.
“I’m holding onto it.” Cline said. “It’s sitting in my garage, waiting for them to reclaim it.”