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Thief Steals Cancer Patient's Car, Wheelchair

GLOUCESTER (CBS) - Every step Kate Barnett takes is a struggle and a reminder that life can be cruel and unfair. "It's been a nightmare," she says sitting outside her Gloucester home.

The 60-year-old is battling cancer. On days she doesn't get assistance she crawls her way up her stairs. "I got a neuropathy in my hands and legs from the chemo," she said.

Kate Barnett
Kate Barnett (Image from Paul Burton/WBZ)

A few weeks ago, Kate was shopping at Market Basket in Lynn with her personal care assistant. When they came outside her car was stolen along with her much-needed wheelchair and wallet. More than $1000 was gone.

"I had my wheelchair in the back of my car. It's hard to find a little car that you can put a wheelchair into," she said.

Kate's car is a 2002 Dodge Neon. She says it's not worth much but she needs it. "Please give me my car back. I don't care if you take the wheels just leave me the car and engine or send me a note of where it is so I can come get it. I won't press any charges. I just want my car back. I can't afford to buy another one," she cried.

However, Kate may not need the thief to return her car. Brian Kelly, President of the Kelly Automotive Group, saw Kate's story on the Friday evening news and is donating a car to her.

"I was watching her go up the stairs, I just thought, the least I could do is help her with some transportation," Kelly said.

Kelly said he will put together a group of cars that meet Kate's needs and he will have her pick one out.

Kate Barnett
Kate Barnett's stolen car (WBZ-TV)

Kate filed a police report and every week she checks in. She's called wrecking and tow yards but so far no leads. "They made it so every aspect of my life has been made 100 percent worse," she said about her thief.

Despite her pain and struggle, Kate still remains positive and refuses to give up hope. "I have a new grand-baby on the way. And babies are God's opinion that the world should go on. And I would like to see him or her, and that's worth fighting for."

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