A TEENAGE boy who collapsed on the roadside as he cycled to work had his prized mountain bike stolen after he was taken to hospital.
Mathew Ritchie was cycling from his home in Acrefair to Chirk on Saturday, where he was due to start a shift at McDonald’s at 4pm.
But the 17-year-old passed out near Lodge Farm, Chirk, part way into his three-mile journey.
He was discovered by passers-by who dialled 999, and his bright orange Diamondback Overdrive bike worth £500 was chained to a fence while he was taken to Wrexham Maelor Hospital.
But when Mathew and his mother Emma Vyse, 37, returned the following day his bike had gone.
Emma told the Leader: “Mathew is distraught over the bike, because he goes everywhere on it.
“He is so upset that someone could do something like this. The people who took it did not know what had happened to Mathew, but that is no excuse.
“It’s a despicable crime.”
It is thought Mathew, a former pupil of Ysgol Rhiwabon, collapsed between 3.20pm and 3.50pm.
Passers-by alerted his mother by taking his mobile phone from his pocket and searching his phone book for ‘Mum.’
Emma added: “It was a couple of ladies who found him, and they were brilliant.
“They called me and said they didn’t want to shock me but Mathew had taken ill, and they had called an ambulance.
“When they first found him he was unconscious, but then came round and stabilised.
“I went straight to the scene and the paramedics were already there.
“He had problems in the past with passing out, but doctors put it down to him growing.
“He hadn’t passed out for a good while.”
Mathew has just completed a sport and active leisure course at Military Preparation College (MPCT) in Wrexham, and is in the process of applying to join the Royal Air Force.
His three-year-old mountain bike had been a gift from his father Paul Ritchie, 39, on his birthday.
Emma added: “We went back first thing the next morning and the bike had just gone.
“That bike is his pride and joy, and he looked after it really well.”
Mathew was discharged from hospital on Saturday night and is making a good recovery.