When decorated Army Reservist, Specialist Jackie Gatti from South Weymouth, Massachusetts, arrived home from Afghanistan this week, she was looking forward to celebrating her return with a family dinner. Instead, on what should have been a lovely evening, the soldier was robbed of her medals and memories.
While she was eating with her family at a local restaurant, a thief stole her Army backpack out of the back of a pickup truck. Inside were absolutely irreplaceable, invaluable awards and paperwork. "A lot of my military documentation was in there. All my awards from my deployment were in there. I had company coins that my commander and first sergeant had given me as a job well done," Gotti explained to local news station WFXT. So so horrible.
When the 32-year-old vet -- who guarded Taliban prisons during her eight-month tour -- discovered her backpack had been stolen, she dropped to her knees in tears. Understandably, she felt it was "a slap in the face after all I've just been through this past year for him or her, whoever, just decided to help himself to my belongings."
More from The Stir: Pregnant Military Fiancée Robbed of Everything While Relocating (VIDEO)
You would think that after a thief -- no matter how troubled -- would see what sorts of belongings were in the backpack, they would feel tremendous guilt, shame, or at least some sense of human decency to return Gatti's extremely personal, prized belongings. I realize there are some real monsters in the world, but it's hard to believe that even a monster would hold onto the things Gatti described were in that backpack.
For precisely that reason, Gatti and her family are pleading with the thief to return the military items and keep the rest -- no questions asked. They've also offered a $1K reward for the bag's return. The soldier explained:
That's something that we pride ourselves on in the military is our integrity, so I hope this person can find theirs.
We can only hope so, too.
Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to contact their local police department.
Can you believe this?!