West Seattle cancer patient’s car stolen for the 2nd time in 1 year

A Genesee-area cancer patient’s family, hit by a car theft last Mother’s Day (here’s the WSB story from last year), says it’s happened again – this time early Valentine’s Day – and this time, the car had a packed trailer attached, so they are missing a lot more than just a vehicle. It’s a gray 1991 Subaru Legacy Wagon, with DP plates, 02112, and a 4×8 utility trailer with Arizona plates. (Police have already sent it out on their Twitter feed for stolen-vehicle reports – here’s the tweet.) Their firsthand story after the jump:

Car & Trailer Stolen from Cancer Patient, Again

Vehicle: 1991 Subaru Legacy Wagon, gray, License WA 02112 Disability
Trailer: 4×8 utility, Arizona plates

It was Mother’s Day and now Valentine’s Day. My wife is disabled and I’m a stage-4 brain cancer survivor but that didn’t stop somebody from steeling our car for the second time in less than a year. This time is different. After providing end-of-life care for my dying mother, my family was taking a nap preparing for our last trip back to Tucson, Arizona. All of our stuff was packed in our Subaru and ready to go then after a few hours, we found the car had been stolen. But it wasn’t just our car, it was a utility trailer full of our stuff: laptops; documents; tools; chemotherapy and heart medication, a balance for weighting special food, my grandfather’s priceless family heirlooms, kitchenware; clothes; and dog food, dishes & beds. They even stole my white cane.

The last time they stole the family car, I thought maybe the guy was really desperate and, regardless of the presence of disability plates, he didn’t realize that the family who owned also had troubles. Now I find it difficult to believe that guy is not a sociopath. He doesn’t have the courage to face a visually disabled person to rob him, so instead he lurks in the shadows and waits until we fall asleep. Maybe he’s just full of hate for the disabled. Maybe he’s just full of hate for himself. I don’t know but we’d all be better off with this guy off the streets.

As soon as we found the car was missing, I hit the streets crisscrossing from the Admiral District to Genesee but walking about 10 miles after midnight in the rain with brain cancer didn’t locate our belongings. I have an appointment in Tucson for chemotherapy and no longer even have a second set of clothes much less a car. I’ve never been big at asking for help, but I’m asking now. Please help find our stuff and, in so doing, take this creep off the street. Watch for it on the streets and report it immediately to the police if you find it. If he will steal from me, he will steal from you.

17 Replies to "West Seattle cancer patient's car stolen for the 2nd time in 1 year"

  • Just Wondering February 14, 2011 (8:54 am)

    How do you know that the perp is a he? Your story makes it sound like you think the same person stole your car again – is there anything that you didn’t mention that would lead you to believe that is the case? Sorry you got your stuff ripped off – I hope you get it back.

  • Megan February 14, 2011 (9:08 am)

    I believe my husband and I might have passed this car on our way to work this morning. It was around 6:10 am so it was dark out and we weren’t paying too much attention to the driver. We came across the car and trailer driving southbound on 36th at the corner of 36th and Dakota. Now I wish I would have taken a better look at the driver. I hope they find them!

  • westseattledood February 14, 2011 (9:32 am)

    So sorry for you folks!

    Am I reading this right? All was taken Sunday evening – but between what window of time? Was it unattended early in evening – as early as, say 6 or 7? Or was it later like 9 or 10? Later? Perhaps such time differences will jog an observant memory if folks knew. Good luck to you both.

  • WSB February 14, 2011 (9:44 am)

    JW, I asked that same question and am waiting to hear back.
    Re: time frame – it was some time after 8 pm, according to the police-report map, reported at 2 am … until we hear back from the victims, won’t know where they think it happened in that window. But that doesn’t mean it might not have been in motion later in the morning … Police are very cautionary about getting too specific on stolen cars beyond the description of the car itself. When they introduced the Twitter feature, for example, some of us at the media briefing asked whether they could at least say which precinct’s jurisdiction the theft occurred in … They didn’t want to do that because they didn’t want to discourage people ANYWHERE in the area from looking for the vehicle … TR

  • toddinwestwood February 14, 2011 (10:59 am)

    a word of warning to early Subaru owners. If you have not figured it out yet, your key will probably open maybe even start someone else’s Soob.
    Back int the 90’s when my friends and I were snowboarding all the time, we all had Soob 4wd wagons. My key would open “Dave’s” car, his hey would open “Jim’s” car and “John’s” car. If you ever locked your keys in your car, chances were, one of your buddies could comeover and open it for you. If was kind of a running joke and we would move someone’s car in a parking lot for fun.

    Get some extra protection like a Club or some thing.

  • Dale February 14, 2011 (5:34 pm)

    Sorry for the delay, but I had to find a computer and modem after finding what cancer medicines I could, freezing a bank account, etc. I’m pretty sure I saw the car/trailer at 44th & Hinds Ave SW at about midnight and it was gone by 2 a.m. It seemed suspicious that we had not been parking in front much for many months then the first time we did, it was stolen almost immediately. The last time it was stolen in front of the house, it was found within about 5 blocks strongly suggesting someone local. It would be a lot of coincidence, particularly considering run-ins a neighbor has had with the law and a possible sighting a few blocks away four hours or so later.

  • Dale February 14, 2011 (5:54 pm)

    My point on finding the car within six blocks of the current theft location is that, hey, they didn’t transport it to Mandalay then bring it back to West Seattle to dump it. The thief that time had a clear local connection. This time, he picked up the vehicle shortly after being parked only a few hours during the evening. He didn’t shop for a vehicle very far away. I use the word “he” only rhetorically because I don’t know.

  • Dale February 14, 2011 (6:24 pm)

    I hope that nobody will suggest that if I can’t secure my property well enough, I deserve to have it stolen.

  • Kate K February 14, 2011 (7:15 pm)

    I so hope you get your car and belongings back. I’ve alerted my friends to be on the look-out for your car and trailer.

  • Just Wondering February 14, 2011 (7:24 pm)

    No haters here, Dale. I almost started this thread by saying there was no need for follow-on posters to be critical or acusatory but didn’t need to because the WSB denizens are pretty darn compassionate and empathetic unless you are driving too fast/slow or walking your dog on/off leash or a few other things we do that elicit an emotional response. Nobody deserves to have anything stolen. Period.

  • Dale February 14, 2011 (9:02 pm)

    Suppose an enforcer identify and capture a car thief who turns out to be hardwired as a sociopath and can’t help it. What’s the fix, or is that a silly question?

  • gayle February 14, 2011 (10:58 pm)

    So sorry that this has happened to you again. Besides keeping a lookout for the stolen car and trailer, is there some other help you might need?

  • Dale February 15, 2011 (2:37 am)

    Even living on limited income for life, even losing your car and personal property right down to your toothbrush, that isn’t the worst. The sleep deprivation from wondering what will happen next is worse. In some circles, it would be called torture or domestic terrorism.

  • Dale February 15, 2011 (2:48 am)

    Besides some sense of security, my family needs to find a reliable car to get us back to Tucson. Since I’m visually impaired, my wife does all the driving, but she has unusually short legs. I had just attached wood blocks to the brake pedals on our Subaru so she could reach them. It funny how we make so many small improvements in our lives then just take them for granted. It adds up.

  • Sonoma February 15, 2011 (3:22 am)

    We are so sorry to read of your plight, Dale. We’ll keep a lookout and hope for the best.

  • Gina February 15, 2011 (3:44 am)


    I am looking when out for walks–makes me so thankful I have access to a garage!

  • Dale February 16, 2011 (2:17 pm)

    The replacement car didn’t pass emissions because the Service Engine Soon light didn’t come on when first turing on the ignition–found it because it failed emissions. I hope it’s something minor.

Sorry, comment time is over.