Vicki St. John is still trying to wrap her head around what happened.
When the multiple sclerosis sufferer left her Chestnut Drive home on Tuesday night to get some food with her husband Mark, she left the walker she uses to traverse her yard on the curb.
When the couple returned, it was gone.
“It was raining, and I pull up and I say, ‘Where is your walker?’” recalled her husband. "We looked around and it was gone."
“I still can’t get over that somebody took it,” added Vicki St. John, 54. “I couldn’t believe it. I mean, you’ve got to be kidding me.”
The St. Johns–who’ve lived in their Phoenixville home without incident for 35 years–figure that the pink walker would cost, given that it was customized with special wheels that allow Vicki to move with less upper body strain, about $200 to replace.
“It’s pink with flowers on it. It’s not like one you ever see anywhere else,” added its owner.
St. John said she got in the habit of leaving the walker on the curb in October when lugging it into the car when she commuted to her job as a supply chain analyst at AmerisourceBergen became too dangerous. As evidence of the hazard, her husband pointed to a deep purple bruise on her underarm that she's had since the most recent occasion when fussing with a walker caused her to fall off a curb and into the street.
To cut down on the falls, she’s worked out a complicated, but manageable, system: she uses a walker or a cane to move around inside her home, a separate walker to get between the house and the car, and keeps yet another walker in the car.
“I really can’t get around without one,” she sighed. “That’s why I have so many.”
The St. Johns said Phoenixville Police responded to the reported theft, but didn’t have much to offer in the way of assistance.
“The officer said they thought the person who took it probably thought it was a freebie or that it was out with the trash. I said ‘It’s not trash night, and it didn’t have a sign on it that said 'free,'’” said Mark. “If it was trash night and it was next to a pile of trash, then I could see it.”
For the time being, Vicki hopes to borrow a walker from her mother-in-law, but she said she’s not ready to give up on the one she's lost. She doesn’t want justice; she just wants her walker back.
“I’m going to drive around and see if somebody has it in a yard sale,” she said, before adding that she really just hopes someone returns it.