Fund created to help Chesterfield teen whose birthday presents were stolen while he was hospitalized

Thieves broke into a car and stole the birthday presents of a 16-year-old who was in MCV hospital for major surgery. After hearing the story, a local redditor has created a fund to raise money for the family.

While a Chesterfield teen recovered from major surgery in the hospital, thieves stole the boy’s birthday presents from his family’s car. Now another local teen has created a crowdsourcing fund to raise money for the family using the support of the RVA subreddit.

16-year-old Christopher Roberts has already had 30 skull and brain surgeries. While undergoing his most recent surgery at the VCU Medical Center, thieves broke into his family’s car as it sat on the 7th floor of the hospital’s parking deck, stealing Christopher’s birthday presents. The thieves also pilfered car parts, along with his father’s debit card, credit card, and cash. Christopher’s father, Tim, estimates that thieves got away with $300-$400, money he would have used to pay for Christopher’s medication and medical bills.

William Turton read about the story through the RVA subreddit around 2:00 PM on Friday. By 3:00 PM he’d created the Roberts’ Family Relief Fund to raise money for Christopher and his family.

“I think the thing that most got me…was that no one was acting,” Turton said about the story. “Everyone was kind of watching it happen. So I knew I had to be the one to step up and do this.”

He created a crowdfunding campaign based on the success that previous campaigns have had with Reddit users. Within an hour after creating the fund, redditors helped raise $175. Although Turton’s grateful for the support, he isn’t surprised by it.

“These are all people on this subreddit who love Richmond,” he said. “It’s the fact that you have a community that all share similar ideals and want to make something happen is really the platform that you need for positive change.”

In addition to his word that he’ll donate the raised money directly to the Roberts’ family, Turton has divulged his contact information online so that the public can hold him accountable.

As of 4:00 PM, people have donated $250 dollars toward the $500 goal. “It could totally go beyond $500” by the time the fund ends on July 11th, Turton said. He assured that every dollar will go directly to the Roberts family.

You can donate to the Roberts’ Family Relief Fund here

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Nathan Cushing

Nathan Cushing is a writer, journalist, and RVANews Editor.

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