Local cancer victim heartbroken about stolen van: ‘It was my only vehicle to get me to my appointments’

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

DES MOINES, Wash. -- Talk about feeling kicked when you are already down.  Someone stole the black Kia Sedona van a Des Moines woman uses to get to her cancer treatments.

Tina Ashing is heartbroken and already dealing with Stage 3 breast cancer; she is scheduled for a double mastectomy in a few weeks.

"It's my life. It was my only vehicle to get me to my appointments and we're borrowing cars and we're only going to be able to borrow these cars for so long and I'm going to be without a vehicle."

About 6:30 a.m. on March 10, her husband left the van running to warm it up before work while he went inside to get his lunch.

"It was foolish, I didn't think about leaving it running. That's my fault,” said Joe Ashing.

Tina's breast cancer scarf was hanging from the mirror.

"Without question, it tugs at your heartstrings to hear this story and the strife that this family is going through and this just makes it worse," said Sgt. Doug Jenkins with Des Moines Police. He wants to remind people that it is illegal to leave a vehicle running but is sympathetic to Tina's plight. He says he's surprised her van hasn't been found.

"It's extremely unusual. It depends on who stole it and why. If they just used it for joy riding, it's gotta be parked somewhere," said Jenkins.

With all the medical bills, Joe and Tina can't afford a new van. He works full-time as a mechanic but a year ago, their landlord decided to sell the house they were renting. They used the van as collateral to buy a trailer to live in. It's parked in Tina's parents' driveway.

"We are a family of 4 and three cats ... all living in here," she said.

The city wants them to move the trailer but they have nowhere to go. They want to rent a three-bedroom home but don't have enough money for the security and last month's rent.

"My recovery is not going to get any better with all this stress."

Getting her van back would be a start.  It's a 2006 black Kia Sedona EX with WA license 722-ZUQ. He has "Silver Skulls " license plate frames on the front and back of the vehicle. It has tinted windows, a sunroof, tan leather interior, a Class 2 tow bar with hitch and a small dent on the right side back bumper. If you spot it, please call 911.


If you want to help the family with a new home or van, email me at David@q13fox.com and I will put you in touch with Tina.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.