‘They stole my mobility, it just makes me sick’

She contracted the illness more than 60 years ago

Mardell Wilson in a recent photo with her motorized scooter. It was stolen from her North Portland porch on September 11, 2016 (Courtesy photo)
Mardell Wilson in a recent photo with her motorized scooter. It was stolen from her North Portland porch on September 11, 2016 (Courtesy photo)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Ever since contracting polio when she was 16, Mardell Wilson has used crutches. Now 78, she got a brand new scooter about a month ago to help her explore the boardwalk in Depoe Bay.

Mardell Wilson walks down the front steps at her North Portland home, September 15, 2016 (KOIN)
Mardell Wilson walks down the front steps at her North Portland home, September 15, 2016 (KOIN)

“I have always been determined that I’m going to be able to keep going, and then this year I realized I need more than just my crutches to get around, that my lifestyle was being affected,” Wilson told KOIN 6 News.

She said going into shops for the first time ever was a fantastic feeling.

“I haven’t done this ever, so this has just been a miracle for me. You know, I feel drunk with power! I can just do anything I wanted.”

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But that independence came to a screeching halt early last Sunday when thieves stole her scooter from her back patio in North Portland’s St. Johns neighborhood.

“They stole my mobility, they stole my legs,” she said. “They didn’t just steal a scooter and it just makes me sick.”

Mardell Wilson walks on her porch at her North Portland home, September 15, 2016 (KOIN)
Mardell Wilson walks on her porch at her North Portland home, September 15, 2016 (KOIN)

The Gogo Elite Traveller breaks apart and she usually kept it in her car. But it’s been so nice outside lately she was using it to toodle around her neighborhood. She parked it on her back patio.

The thieves, she said, don’t have the key or the charging cord for the $1200 scooter. “They had to carry it. It won’t move any other way.”

Mardell contacted the Portland police and posted her story on a neighborhood website.

“There’s an element in society that you don’t like to think about that do these cruel things,” she said. “But you also see the other side, the people that just shine like stars and just say ‘We’re sorry, we’ll keep our eyes open.’ That makes me feel really good.”

Mardell said she justs wants her scooter back, no questions asked.

“Nope, just bring it back. Then maybe you’ll get some good karma instead of bad karma.”

Mardell Wilson at her North Portland home, September 15, 2016 (KOIN)
Mardell Wilson at her North Portland home, September 15, 2016 (KOIN)

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