SAN DIEGO – Ten-year-old Claire needs her wheelchair and hand cycle to get around.
Her mother Peggy Dermody, though, says both were stolen while their family was unpacking Friday for a weekend “staycation” in Mission Beach.
“Somebody drove by obviously and decided a little kids blue wheelchair and small hand cycle were something they needed to have,” said Dermody.
Claire was born with spina bifida and now has to use crutches to get around.
Both pieces, on loan from a friend, were stolen right out of the driveway of their rented condo.
“It is not even our chair to lose,” said Dermody. “It’s like taking somebody’s legs from them, that’s how she gets around.”
The east County family has had to adjust their weekend plans, with Claire forced to already sit out a group bike ride up the beach.
“I was really sad because because everyone else went and i didn’t,” said Claire.
The mom has filled a police report and posted about the theft on Facebook, hoping the $4,500 wheelchair can be found or returned.
“[She was] very upset especially when it came to the bike ride or when we wanted to go somewhere and she’s got to use her crutches which don’t work long term or be carried,” said Peggy. “I’m just disgusted that somebody would take an obvious child’s wheelchair and Claire is 50 pounds… the chair is tiny.”