North Texas

Fort Worth Cancer Charity Burglarized, Electronics Stolen

Investigators in Fort Worth are working to figure out who would break into the offices of a cancer charity.

Meanwhile, the charity itself is trying to replace computers and electronics without taking away from services for clients in need.

"This window was completely smashed in, glass everywhere," said Melanie Wilson, CEO of Cancer Care Services.

Burglars broke in overnight Sunday, stealing computers out of a social worker's office.

"You can tell looking around everything has been donated. It's all old, and we're just doing the best we can," Wilson said.

Straight across from the broken window is a quote from Mother Theresa. The thieves would have walked right by that, down the hall to their next target.

"Right here used to be a television, a Bluetooth speaker and a sound bar," Wilson said, with a gesture to a blank wall.

The brand-new television set was just donated for virtual support groups and meditation videos, enhancing a peaceful space for cancer patients and caregivers.

"It just kind of feels like perhaps somebody knew it was here," Wilson said. "Because it's really the only thing in our whole building that had any real value."

Cancer Care Services does not have money in its budget to replace four computers and a flat-screen TV. Now, administrators worry the expense could take away from other necessities, like the crates of medical supplies and nutrition supplements the center donates to very sick people.

Caren Desantis knows just how important that mission is, ever since her cancer diagnosis four years ago.

"They've taken care of me, my wife, my son, our family in one way or another," Desantis said.

The center helps pay treatment bills and offers free counseling. Desantis' son, Max, even comes in for free play therapy. So news of the break-in hurt.

"It felt just as bad as when I found my home had been broken into," Desantis said.

But beating cancer has a way of breeding optimism, and Desantis has a message for those burglars.

"We forgive you," she said with a sigh. "Nothing but good things will happen from this."

HOW TO HELP: Cancer Care Services is fully funded through private donations. If you'd like to help, visit the charity's website.

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