A Linwood, Minn. woman believes a thief stole donations from an event in Wyoming, Minn. intended to raise funds for her medical bills and a future lung transplant.
Similar thefts at July weddings in Anoka County prompt one to question if the thefts could be related, though that possibility remains unclear.
Heidi Willcocks has been dealing with a major respiratory condition called Allergic Bronchopulmonary Aspergillosis, which means she's allergic to the most common family of molds.
"My day pretty much depends on how well I can breathe and what comes in the mail for bills," Willcocks said.
She depends on pulmonary vest therapy and a nebulizer each day.
"We're just trying to control my body's allergic reaction to it, so far the medication that we tried which cost $1,600 a month didn't work," she said.
Willcocks told FOX 9 News she makes several visits to the doctor every month. She says hopes to one day receive a lung transplant. Last Sunday, her husband's colleagues organized a barn dance benefit held to help give Willcocks some financial relief.
The couple breathed a little easier after the successful event, until they got home and realized they only had three checks in the card box.
"We figured at somebody at some point in time, somebody got into the card box, turned it upside down, reached in, grabbed wheat they could and ran," husband Jeff Willcocks said.
Jeff Willcocks is an EMT and North Memorial, and the hospital was set to match a portion of donations.
"We had to photocopy the checks, so Monday when we took a copy of just three checks into his boss she's like, ‘Wait a minute, what about the donations from so and so and so and so?'"
The fact that someone could be so heartless weighs heavily on the couple that just wants relief.
"It feels like somebody took the wind right out of you, even though I can't breathe very well anyway. It's just hope and breath," Willcocks said.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
If you know anything about the alleged stolen donations, call Wyoming police at 651-462-0577.
An account has also been set up at First State Bank of Wyoming in Wyoming, Minn.