GASTONIA, N.C. (WBTV) - It may just seem like a pretty, bright red rocking chair.
But the chair sitting on the porch of Rockin Realty in Gastonia is an emotional symbol to the local business owner – in fact, the chair is the company’s namesake.
That is why, when this symbol was stolen from the porch in broad daylight, the community there said, “not so fast.”
“There’s nothing like good, old-fashioned, southern hospitality,” owner Teresa Macfarlane says.
Macfarlane has a newfound appreciation for both that small town, and for social media.
“It made them mad that my chair got stolen,” she says.
Far more than a front porch afterthought, even beyond it informing the company’s name, the chair is an emotional nod to her grandmother, who raised her.
“My fondest memories of childhood are granny rocking me in the chair,” Macfarlane says, tearfully.
Just days ago, the replica was stolen, quickly, in broad daylight. She posted the security video of a man carrying it off in his pickup truck to social media.
“It got shared, and shared, and shared, and shared some more,” she says.
Soon, like social media can sometimes assist with, the thief was identified – Macfarlane learned his name. And though officers offered, she did not file a report.
“I wanted to make sure he knew that if he just brought my chair back, I wasn’t going to prosecute,” she says.
What she is surprised by now, is that the man did. And keeping to her word, she is not going to press charges.
“He’s gotten embarrassed from the social media, everything,” Macfarlane says. “I don’t think I need to add to that, I think he’s already done it to himself.”
Now she is thanking her community, and putting this porch pirate in the past.
“I forgave him for me, not for him,” she says.