WILLOUGHBY HILLS, Ohio -- In Willoughby Hills, a local rugby player had his ear implants stolen this past Saturday, and he says they were only 5 feet away!
It’s a big deal because Allen Lee, 23, is legally deaf in both ears and he needs his implants to work.
Allen plays rugby for the Cleveland Eastern Rugby Team and was at a match in North Chagrin Park when someone took his bag that contained the implants.
Hazel Lee, Allen’s mother, called FOX 8 in a desperate attempt to track down his stolen hearing aids.
Park rangers said they wish Allen would have reported the crime on Saturday – the day it happened – so they could have started their search right away.
Instead, he waited until Sunday to file the report and that may have cost him in the long run.
The good news is there’s a ranger-recruiting exercise they’ve bumped up to this weekend – specifically for Allen’s ear implants.
Fifteen rangers-in-training will be sent out to search the Metropark to help find the costly devices.
They are worth $5,000 and a programmed specifically for Allen.
“I would say to the person (who took the ear implants), have the person have to walk in my shoes (to see what it’s like to be deaf) for, let’s say, two months, to see how much it really makes a difference. And hopefully maybe they’ll have second thoughts before taking someone else’s stuff,” Allen said.
If you know of the whereabouts of Allen’s hearing aids, you’re asked to contact the Cleveland Metroparks Ranger Department at 4600 Valley Parkway, Fairview Park, OH 44126.
You can mail the devices to that address if you find them.