Bedford Park video shows thieves stealing truck restored for teen with cancer: 'It was part of me'

Terminally ill grandfather willed truck to grandson just before health challenges

Ravi Baichwal Image
Monday, April 4, 2022
Video shows thieves stealing truck restored for teen with cancer
Security video showed the theft of a truck, restored for a teen with cancer, near Wintrust Sports Complex. Chicago Police Department is investigating.

BEDFORD PARK, Ill. (WLS) -- Jacob Watson and his mom, Jamie, pondered what was lost.

Tire tracks were evidence of how thieves, seen in a security video, somehow escaped with Jacob's restored 2002 Ford F-250 Sunday when he was inside Bedford Park's new Wintrust Sports Complex.

"It meant so much to me," Jacob said. "And I know to some people, it is just a vehicle, but to me, it was part of me."

Jamie's father willed the truck to his grandson. Three years later, in 2018, as a freshman, he came down with Langerhans cell histiocytosis, a cancer that metastasized in his brain. The Make-A-Wish foundation arranged last summer for the truck's restoration. It was a vehicle the grandfather, a construction worker, would sit in when he was terminally ill just before Jacob's health challenges.

"I would see him from the front window of our house because he was sick, and he was getting sick, then to end, he just wouldn't come out of the truck," Jamie said.

"It really hit me differently when I saw how they were all reacting to it," Jacob said. "Not only my family but my friends, and everybody else, even people that I don't know, they were contacting me and everybody is there for me."

"He is a family kid. My son is such a good kid with such a good heart," Jamie said. "And he even stated to me that, 'why do all these bad things keep happening to him?'"

Now the young man, studying to be a stationary engineer, only wants back this symbol of family and overcoming pain.

"That is all I can ask for anybody to take out of this," Jacob said. "I don't want any more evil in this world and I just want people to be kind."

His mother echoed that sentiment.

"I just tell him that there will be a light at the end of the tunnel for you, that something good will happen out of all the bad things that happened to you," Jamie said.