Larry Skopnik, wheelchair-bound Commercial Drive hero, foils robbery (VIDEO)
It's all caught on surveillance camera and talked about in different languages around the world.
A guy from my neighbourhood, Larry Skopnik, stopped a would-be robber from assaulting a store clerk on Commercial Drive.
The fact that he did this from his wheelchair has made the story extra big news and when I searched "Larry Skopnik" in Google News, I saw stories printed in English, French, German, and Spanish.
For full details and video, check out this CBC story: Wheelchair hero tackles angry customer.
Here's what I saw on the raw video footage online. A man enters the cash area, lunging towards the store clerk. Larry rushes towards the assailant, opens a swinging door to the cashier area, and hauls the the guy out, away from the store clerk. Larry gets him in a headlock, which pulls him out of his wheelchair. Then, from the floor, Larry keeps the man in a headlock. CBC reports that two other men came and together they kept him until police arrived.
My son and I have chatted with Larry many times outside JJ Bean during the past seven or so years. Recently, Larry overheard my son whining for a new PlayStation3 as we walked by. Larry gave him some tips on how to be convincing - how to make a good case to me re: why I would purchase a PS3. What features is mom likely to enjoy? (And I am planning to get him one for the holiday season.)
Overall Larry is one of my favourite "regulars" on Commercial Drive (and Facebook friend) and it's been such a pleasure to see him honoured for his heroic actions. He's such a cool guy and totally deserves it, and I hope he gets beer and football tickets and a few other things that make life sweeter. Thanks to Larry for taking care of the people in our neighbourhood. Yay, East Van pride!