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After missing 2 days, kindergartner's wheelchair returned

Boy, 6, in body cast relies on $1,000 chair to get around

MADISON, Wis. - A Madison kindergarten student wasn't able to go to school because someone had stolen his wheelchair, according to Madison police.

Donita Hopkins said her son Zayen, 6, needs the chair in order to sit, since the body cast he's been wearing since a surgery in November comes up to his mid-torso.

Two days after it had gone missing, the chair was dropped off to a police station and an officer returned it to the family Friday afternoon.

Police said the wheelchair was stolen from the family's garage on Mt. Vernon Court Wednesday.

"The garage was open and it came up missing," Hopkins said.

Hopkins said neighborhood kids admitted to taking Zayen's chair for a joyride.

"[The kids] took it out, but I don't think they really meant to cause any harm [or] confusion," she said.

Neighbors found the wheelchair about a block away from the west side home and UW home care health workers matched the serial numbers on the chair to the family's address.

"In 15 years, this is the first time I've ever seen something go back to the same owner," said Steve Pulley, a caregiver with UW Health Home Care Services.

Zayen was relieved he won't be stuck in the house anymore and his mom said the family can focus on his recovery.

"I'm so happy they found my baby's chair and I thank the neighbors for not doing anything to it," Hopkins added.

Hopkins said Zayen will need to wear the cast for another six weeks and it would have cost at least $1,000 to replace the wheelchair.

VIDEO: After missing 2 days, kindergartner's wheelchair returned

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