Thursday, November 30, 2017

Camera Containing Photos Of A Man's Late Wife Is Returned A Year After Being Stolen

Sometimes horrible things happen that just don't make sense. After such an event, you might want to just give up and not hold out hope.

For Dave Lacey of Santa Ana, California, this was definitely the case.

After suffering a horrific tragedy, Dave found that his house was burglarized. Out of all the items stolen, the most meaningful item was his camera that held all of his memories of his late wife.

He never thought he'd see the camera again, until one phone app led to a miracle!

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Dave and Erica Lacey were married in 2009.

The wedding planning had gone ahead despite one huge hiccup.

Not long before their nuptials, Erica had a cold that just wouldn't go away.

Eventually, she went to see the doctor, and the news wasn't good.

They found two large tumors in Erica's chest behind her diaphragm.

She had a rare aggressive form of B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

Doctors urged her to focus on treatment and not the wedding.

But absolutely nothing was going to put this wedding on hold. 

She was so ready to marry Dave and spend whatever time she had left with her husband.

Sadly, that time was cut short...

In 2011, Dave said goodbye to Erica.

She passed away two short years after the wedding.

Dave and Erica's family held a memorial event to celebrate Erica's life.

Hundreds of photos of the event and Erica's funeral were taken on a camera that Erica had bought before she passed.

When she was diagnosed, she bought the camera so she could capture small beautiful moments of her remaining time.

But one year after Erica's celebration of life, another terrible thing happened to Dave.

Someone broke into his home and stole all of his most valued possessions. 

Among these stolen items, which included his Xbox, was the camera.

The camera that held every happy moment of Dave and Erica's last two years together.

It was like losing Erica all over again.

Lacey said, "I had written it off ... as gone and stolen forever."

But thanks to an iPhone app, everything changed.

Another crime victim had an app on his phone that worked as a tracking beacon for his stolen computer.

This man called the police and gave detectives Paul McClaskey and Jerry Verdugo the information.

They immediately went to the apartment indicated by the iPhone app.

At the apartment, the stolen computer was found, among some other stolen items.

Police arrested David Aguilar and his girlfriend Monica Molina on burglary charges, to which they plead guilty.

But police found something in the apartment that would change everything for Dave...

Stacks of receipts from various pawn shops were found lying around the apartment.

Using the receipts, police were able to track down other stolen items at a local pawn shop.

Including Dave's camera.

Detective McClaskey turned on the camera to see hundreds of photos of a young woman's funeral.

"As I started thumbing through it, it was apparent that it was a camera that was special,’ said Verdugo.

At the time, the detectives had no clue who the camera belonged to, but they happened to recognized a unique blue house that they'd driven by before.

Police scoured the neighborhood, unable to find the blue house.

It wasn't until a neighbor told them a certain house on the block used to be blue but had been renovated, and that its owner had just lost his wife to cancer.

They knew they'd found a match!

When Dave got the call that his beloved camera had been found, he was in disbelief.

"I thought it was a joke at first. I had given up all thought of recovery," he said.

Dave immediately recognized the handmade camera strap on the camera that Erica had made —

"She was a super, super strong woman. Super talented," he continued.

When he turned on the camera to find all of his old photos, his emotions were clear —

"I feel like someone was watching out for me, just to get it back."

I can only imagine what it would feel like to get something this valuable back.

Ahhh, we love happy endings! 

See the amazing video for yourself!

SHARE this story with everyone who loves a happy ending!

h/t Daily Mail


Author: verified_user