CHICAGO (CBS) — Talk about a Grinch. Someone stole a Salvation Army kettle and all of the cash in it Wednesday evening, in south suburban Oak Lawn.
Salvation Army spokesperson Whitney Lewis said a bell-ringer was taking a scheduled break from her duties outside of a Walgreens drug store at 95th Street and Melvina Avenue when the theft occurred. She returned to find the kettle and its contents gone.
Lewis said Salvation Army kettles are the targets of thieves a couple of times each holiday season, but this is the first this year.
Police have been called in, but Lewis said that the Salvation Army will come out of this whole, even if the thief is never found. She said south suburban attorney Michael McCready has agreed to cover what has been lost, and double the sum.
Lewis said the loss of the kettle itself is $400.
Despite that, she said the kettles have already raised $600,000 this holiday season, and said overall donations have reached the $3.2 million mark. Despite that, she said the need is far greater for the Salvation Army, which collects the majority of its annual donations during the holiday season.
WBBM will partner with the Salvation Army Friday for its annual Good Neighbor Radiothon. Donations will be taken over the phone and online all day, beginning at 5 a.m.