NEW YORK, Aug. 17 (UPI) — Money collected for a cancer charity in honor of a 5-year-old boy with the disease was stolen by a couple in a sport utility vehicle, a New York man says.
Philip Carone, 63, told the New York Daily News he had been collecting donations outside his mother’s house in Staten Island when he was robbed Saturday. He had been keeping the money in a large jug and giving donors stuffed animals.
Carone said he took a quick break to feed stray cats and returned to find a gray SUV on the street with his large stuffed bear inside and no collection jug. The SUV had a female passenger.
“She turned around to tell the driver to go,” Carone said. “They just flew out of here. I saw the bear looking at me as they drove by.”
Carone gave chase in his own car, finding the empty jug a block away.
The money would have gone to St. Baldrick’s Foundation. Christine Lograno-Weinstein of Queens, whose son, Mikey, now 5, has been fighting cancer for three years, has been organizing gifts in his honor.
“I couldn’t fathom doing that,” she said of the theft. “What they’ve taken could have gone to a research grant. A doctor might have been able to find a cure for my kid.”
Carone said he is out collecting again, trying to make up for the theft.