GARLAND, Texas - A Garland woman left her home Thursday morning to find her handicap ramp stolen.
Garland police are investigating the reported theft. The woman suspects maybe someone took it for scrap metal. Although it couldn’t be worth much as scrap, it does mean a whole lot to her.
While Misty Allen-Guinn is up and walking with assistance today, that isn’t always the case.
"I have numerous physical disabilities and they are slowly getting worse," she said. "And I’m going to need it more and more. So having the ramp there for me is very important."
Allen-Guinn’s metal ramp covered one step. But even navigating a single step has been difficult for her in the past.
"The ramp’s important because it makes it easier for me to get up even that one little step. With my legs being unstable, I can’t always maneuver even a step at times."
So while Allen-Guinn isn’t using her scooter or a wheelchair at the moment, it was still a blow to wake up and find the metal ramp gone.
"Having that gone is a major factor for me in my mobility and being able to stay as independent," she said.
Garland police confirm they are investigating the incident. It’s not immediately clear why it was taken. Allen-Guinn assumes someone thought they’d sell it for scrap.
Frustrated, like many of us would, Allen-Guinn turned to Facebook to vent. But in those replies on a Garland community Facebook were more than sympathetic ears.
"The first reply I got was a gentleman who offered to come help fix it and take care of it," she said.
"Anytime we get a chance, we try our best," said Peter Tormey, who offered to help. "It’s not just me. A lot of people in the community are like that."
Several people offered to help with manpower and equipment. They hope to make another ramp where she’s currently been using the grass to avoid steps near the sidewalk.
It’s proof for the lifelong Garland resident that she’s in the right place.
"That’s one of the reasons I stay in Garland," Allen-Guinn said. "People can trash talk Garland. Those other people that don’t really live in Garland can trash talk Garland. But when it comes down to it, Garland is there. People are always there for you."
The neighbors are hoping to help her stay. They will also make sure the ramp is permanently fixed this time so no one tries to take it again.