A central Iowa organization that saw thieves steal its vehicles and holiday cheer boxes just as it was getting ready to deliver them has rebounded.
EveryStep CEO Tray Wade, says they got a lot of help and sent out Cheer Boxes to those who have lost a loved one — including some people on a waiting list. “Thanks to the wonderful support from the community, all the hard work, we were able to actually take those folks off the waiting list and get them cheer boxes as well,” Wade says.
The two trucks that were taken were recovered and will need some repair work. He says one of their board members and his company F&G also donated a new van.
“And we’re going to use that to get cheer boxes out to people, get people to camps, use it for other purposes across our 30 plus programs,” Wade says. “We’re still trying to rehab the two vehicles that they got ahold of — but also incredibly thankful and just in awe of the generosity again of the community.”
A lot of other items were also stolen. “Unfortunately, we didn’t have a lot of success recovering much of anything else as far as the items. They were already gone, thrown away. We don’t know exactly what happened to the other items,” Wade says.
Wade says walking into the rented space where they were putting together the cheer boxes to find everything gone was a bad day. But he says the response turned that around. “Now you look back on it and it’s kind of a heartwarming story. You know — it’s a thing to be proud of — because not only did we do what we set out to do, we exceeded those numbers. We got some other families that otherwise would not be served this year — a little pick me up at the holiday season,” according to Wade.
The Urbandale Police Department says detectives arrested 36-year-old Alan Michael Ward-Well and charged him with three counts of second-degree theft and third-degree burglary in the case. They also arrested 55-year-old Christina Marie Davis on those same charges, along with charges of possession of methamphetamine, and possession of drug paraphernalia