TOMS RIVER, NJ -- Presents stolen out of a suitcase on your way back from Disney World is a heartless crime to any victim, but for one little girl battling a terminal disease, it was devastating.
Abby Porpora is on a transplant list, and she was returning from a Make-A-Wish trip to the Most Magical Place on Earth when her suitcase was ransacked.
Henry's Halos is a New Jersey non-profit that helps families with life-threatening illnesses, and they knew where to turn, asking ABC7 to work some of our magic.
"She's only the size of an average 18 month old," mom Mary Anne Porpora said. "She's 23 pounds."
Abby is so small because she developed Short Gut Syndrome as an infant, and her nutrition comes from a bag connected to her stomach by a feeding tube.
The toddler doesn't let being tethered slow her down, and she recently celebrated her third birthday at the resort in Orlando.
She was nominated for Make-A-Wish by the staff of K. Hovnanian Children's Hospital at Jersey Shore Medical Center in Neptune, where Abby has spent more than half her life.
"We actually had to wait until she was old enough to be eligible," Child Life Specialist Sara Patterson said. "Because we know her whole life how eligible she was."
But after coming home from the trip, Abby's mom noticed several items missing from her daughter's suitcase -- for starters, Abby's $2,000 feeding pump.
Also gone were a plethora of Disney souvenirs, including two dresses you can only get in the park, several dolls and T-shirts.
"It's just horrible to have her open it and her things aren't there," Mary Anne Porpora said.
We asked Orlando Airport security and the Transportation Safety Administration to try and locate the items, but both came up empty. So we went to work. Abby's pump maker Smiths Medical donated a new one, and our parent company, Disney, put together a little magic.
Abby was back in the hospital, where we got all of her items and surprised her. Her nurses cheered as Abby got a huge basket of goodies from Disney, all her missing items replaced. And more than any words could express was a smile from a very sick but very happy little princess.
Abby is still in the hospital fighting off an infection, and she had a transfusion just Monday night. Her family, including six older brothers and sisters, and the whole hospital staff are all praying she turns the corner soon.
CLICK HERE to follow Abby's journey on Facebook.
Terminally-ill child gets happy surprise after thief steals Disney souvenirs
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