Make-a-Wish Foundation

Thief Steals Restored Truck That Belonged to Local ‘Make-a-Wish' Teen's Late Grandfather

The suburban teen, who survived a rare blood disorder, is pleading with the thief to return the truck

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Jake Watson, who survived a rare blood disorder, has a profound connection to his old red pick-up truck that belonged to his late grandfather, but now he's pleading for the return of the vehicle after it was stolen.

Watson's 2002 Ford F250 once belonged to his late grandfather, and he says he has a special connection with the vehicle.

“To some people vehicles are just pieces of metal – but to me – that was part of me,” he said.

Watson, a Chicago Ridge resident, was diagnosed with a rare blood disorder when he was in 8th grade. His only wish was to have his grandfather’s truck restored, and last year the Make-A-Wish Foundation did just that.

“That was my only wish,” Jake said. “The only thing that I wanted.”

A local community is rallying together to make wishes come true for a teenager who is battling a rare blood disease. NBC 5’s Lexi Sutter has the story.

Now 18, Jake was at the Wintrust Sports Complex in Bedford Park Sunday morning around 11 am, when someone managed to unlock the truck and drive it away. The theft was captured on security cameras.

Bedford Park Police are now investigating, leaving Jake and his mom are both heartbroken and angry.

“They were determined,” he said “They got it in under a minute and it was just gone. They got what they wanted – now they are gone. They can take anything they want,” he said “If I get a little scrap of it, it is all I care about.”

“There was a Make-A Wish book in back of truck that they had to have seen,” said Jamie Watson. “It shows pictures of it rusted out when it was my dad’s – and the ending, so they know.”

Now the family is working on spreading the word on social media. They says the truck’s been spotted at least once on Cicero and 47th Street, according to tipsters.

Watson says he is trying to stay hopeful that someone will have a heart and return his precious truck.  

A cash reward is being offered for any information that leads to the recovery of Jake’s truck. The truck has Illinois plate 2677187, and anyone with information is urged to call authorities.

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