Tandem Bike Stolen From Blind Man And His Partner

CHICAGO (STMW) — There are times in life when Terry Gorman, who is blind, feels invisible.

Like when he walks into an elevator, says “hi,” and — in the way of keep-to-themselves city folk — no one replies.

That’s why the 63-year-old Edgewater resident’s tandem bicycle, which he rides with his partner, Sheldon Atovsky, is hot pink — so that Gorman is sure to be noticed.

Unfortunately, thieves took notice of the bike Friday morning while it was locked up outside Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

“It’s very upsetting,” Atovsky, a 61-year-old retired DePaul University music professor, told the Sun-Times. “It’s just so surprising. It was locked very carefully.”

That’s perhaps an understatement. Atovsky and Gorman used four different locks to immobilize the bike and secure it to a low, wrought-iron fence on East Huron, while Gorman went to a doctor’s appointment.

When they returned less than two hours later, the bike and locks were gone — stolen in daylight on a street where there’s almost always a constant stream of patients, doctors and other hospital staff.

The bike is worth about $3,800, Gorman said.

Gorman and Atovsky have called their insurance company; they’ve filed a police report; they’ve checked with hospital security to make sure someone didn’t confiscate the bike. They just want their bike back.

Perhaps you’ve seen Atovsky and Gorman — as Chicago Sun-Times photographer Al Podgorski did this week for a photograph that ran in Wednesday’s edition — riding along the lakefront. Last year, they logged 3,300 miles.

“I love the sound of the bicycle and the sound of the environment around us,” said Gorman, who has been blind since birth and takes the back seat — the “stoker” position. “You hear birds, you hear the sound of the wind, you hear traffic along Lake Shore Drive. You hear golf balls hitting this and that.”

Perhaps you’ve heard Gorman’s bicycle bell. It’s part of a little game the couple play: Whenever someone waves or smiles at them along the lakefront, Atovsky takes notice and tells Gorman to ring his bell.

“Sheldon is someone who doesn’t want to be noticed,” Gorman explained. “I want to be noticed.”

The missing bike is a “C-Motion Scout,” in a color that’s technically called pearlescent magenta. The bike is about eight feet long and it has no fenders.

If you see it, email Atovsky at s-atovsky@sbcglobal.net.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2012. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

  • G-Lep

    Just Axin and Yard Ape — I’m gonna do EVERYTHING I possibly can to get you guys your bike back. Just hang in there!!

    • THEE Yard Ape

      LOL !!! Maybe you and Lyndia done did stole it??

      • G-Lep

        Sadly, Starbucks exists on the southwest side too. We tried our best to keep’em out but oh well. Hey, there was a sighting of your love-bicycle in boystown!!

      • THEE Yard Ape

        @Just- LOL !!! You know that drunken leprechaun and Lyndia and cruising the ‘hood on that bike!!! Maybe they be venturing up north to rob a starbucks??

      • Just Axin

        G-Lep- Any luck? YApe usually takes a ride to get a starbucks and a scone by now and he’s getting a bit moody!

      • G-Lep

        No, I’m just tryin’ to help. So happy for you and Just… I had no idea you were “partners”. Keep on fightin’ for that “marriage equality”!!


        Sorry. I just started drinkin’

  • martin

    These thieves use cordlless grinders to cut the locks. They have honed their skills that they prefer to cut locks during the day. A year ago,I saw a man cutting a lock on michigan avenue by Roosevelt University at 1:00 P:M. I along with the other people thought he was working for the city. No he was not, he was stealing it. Therefore, when you guys see sparks flying while someone grinds a bicycle lock be suspicious.

  • Robert

    I wonder if a heterosexual victim would have received the same amount of media exposure.

    • G-Lep

      Of course not. Yard Ape and Just Axin LIVE for media exposure!!

      • Just Axin

        See what happens when it’s a slow news day? I can’t believe the immediate racial angle in the Tulsa shootings. Even if the white guy targeted blacks, the reverse happens daily in every big city. We’ll see how it pans out. Now, back to YApe…..

      • Just Axin

        YApe wants to know if he should continue to ride the bike without the seat in place….?

      • THEE Yard Ape

        Fuk both of yous!!! LOL !!!!!

      • G-Lep

        LOL Just!!! You a sick mutha!!!

  • http://bicycleshq.com/onguard-beast-chain-bike-lock-5017/ Check Out OnGuard Beast Chain Bike Lock 5017 | Bicycles HQ

    […] Tandem Bike Stolen From Blind Man And His Partner Fri, 06 Apr 2012 18:54:15 -0700 Have you seen a distinctive tandem bicycle around Chicago? It may belong to a retired DePaul University professor, who is blind, and his partner. Their ride was stolen earlier this week, the Sun-Times reports. http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2012/04/06/tandem-bike… […]

blog comments powered by Disqus
Daily Weather Reports Delivered To You!SIGN UP NOW: Get daily weather reports every morning from meteorologist Steve Baskerville!
CBS Sports Radio RoundupGet your latest sports talk from across the country.

Listen Live