CAPITOL HEIGHTS, Md. (FOX 5 DC) - It has been a tough year for a Prince George's County family after they lost their granddaughter to cancer earlier this year. They wanted to bring a little joy back to their family this Christmas so they decked the halls and their lawn.
For David Surles Jr. and his wife Vanessa, their Christmas decorations are priceless. It meant happiness and joy for their other grandchildren who have had to deal with so much sadness. But now, they have nothing to show for it after their decorations were torn down and stolen.
"She loved the lights," said Vanessa.
At just three years old, their granddaughter Londyn lost her fight to an aggressive form of neuroblastoma.
"Jan. 20th of this year, she was supposed to ring the bell to be cancer-free and she passed on Jan. 10," Londyn's grandmother said.
The little girl who enjoyed Christmas was described as "spunky."
"She was lovable, she made everyone's heart melt whenever they met her," Vanessa said. "She would light up a room when she walked in."
For Londyn's siblings, the loss has made for a tough year. Christmas was a day the Surles were all looking forward to.
"We came back off our anniversary and the first thing she wanted to do was put the decorations up," said David. "I was excited because we were going to have the biggest one this year, so we jumped out there and just got started, and we were just happy to have the blowups up."
This year's display would be bigger than in the past. But more than anything, it would mean they would celebrate for Londyn and her love of the holiday.
But last Wednesday, Vanessa got up for work and made her way to the car.
"You walk past something and you realize something is different," she said.
She looked at her doorbell camera video and immediately knew.
"Lo and behold at about 4:28 a.m., on our doorbell [video], it shows three people in our front yard taking our decorations," Vanessa described.
In a cellphone video that showed the aftermath of the theft, David can be heard saying, "What a day. I guess somebody must have needed them better than I did."
The Grinches left them with their extension cord and a few decorations they decided not to take.
For this Capitol Heights family, these decorations mean so much more. They are irreplaceable.
"The guy or guys that have taken it or are maybe seeing this and understand how sentimental those decorations are - I pray they bring them back," said David.
The Surles say they will forgive the people responsible for this and hope others think twice before doing the same.