Holiday joy stolen from dying mother in town for Christmas

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Zane Campen's mom has always made Christmas special, even when the family had nothing and picking out sentimental gifts for each family member.

"She's always done small things like that, has always tried to make Christmas as special as she can."

This year Kathy Campen was diagnosed with stage four breast cancer, but even through her battle, she picked this year's special gifts and shipped them ahead of herself.

On Saturday her son had to report those gifts stolen from his front porch.

"It just crushed her," he said.

Campen says the news delivered on the phone brought his sick mother to tears.

"She was so looking forward to watching us open the presents she had bought for us," Campen added.

Since the packages were reportedly stolen, Campen has placed a dummy box on the front steps with just a note for the "porch pirate."

"You stole all the packages my dying mother sent to us. If you truly need the money I would be glad to help, but if you have any heart, please return them," Campen said.

He says all he wants now are the gifts to be returned because they mean just as much to the one who gave them, as the ones who were supposed to receive them.

"They've now stolen the joy from a very sick woman and just do the right thing and bring that back," he said.

Campen posted on a neighborhood app and was overwhelmed by the generosity of his neighbors. Some have offered money to help his mom buy new presents. Another neighbor he's never met offered to give her a ride to buy them once she arrives.

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