"Our whole world was turned upside dow. My wife being put on hospice. She was doing so good up until now," Frank Medcalf said.
Frank's wife Kathie has Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis or ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease. ALS affects nerves in the brain and spinal cord and results in muscle atrophy. Kathie is bound to a wheelchair, and has difficulty breathing without the help of a ventilator. She can still talk, but she is learning how to lose a tablet to communicate after she can no longer talk.
"He was fixing up the van so I could go places too. So I don't have to sit at home," Kathie said.
Frank just bought a new wheelchair accessible van for his wife, and planned on selling his old truck because he didn't need it anymore.
He said a blonde woman in her 30's named Valerie had stopped by there home in Roseville multiple times to inquire about the couple's bright red 2000 Dodge Dakota with a For Sale sign that was parked outside. He said she eventually negotiated the price down to $3,500. When she couldn't come up with the money, Frank and Kathie said they took the For Sale sign out of the window and parked the truck off the street, to hold it for her.
"We were, we were trying to work with her. When she came back with her dad we said okay. Because sometimes dad's have more money than daughters," Kathie said.
The couple said Valerie brought a man in his 40's or 50's named Richard to their home 2 weeks ago and said they had the money to buy it. Frank said he gave them the keys to take it for a test drive.
"We built up this trust. And I trusted them. I shouldn't have, but I did. Because the guy just promised he would go to the bank and come right back and…he didn't," Frank said.
Frank said he was overwhelmed that day because he had just found out that his wife was going on hospice. In addition, he said his daughter's home in Lincoln burned down the day before. In addition to that, he said his 26-year-old grandson is recovering from surgery for a brain tumor.
"We needed that money," Frank said.
But the couple didn't need the money for medical expenses. They wanted to use the $3,500 for their daughter since she just lost her entire home.
"I'm pushing 80 but I'm a mean old man and I'd like to give them a good spanking, both of them. And I would if I could," Frank said.
Roseville Police said they were working on tracking down the suspects, but did not want to reveal too many details to protect the integrity of the investigation.
In the meantime, Frank and Kathie are making the most of their time together.
"I've been so fortunate over the years. I've had a great life. All because of her. She's just a little angel," Frank said.
When asked how they managed to stay in good spirits despite such profound sadness, Frank said this:
"Well, she believes in God, and I believe in her. We just do the best we can every day," Frank said.
Frank's truck is a bright red 2000 year Dodge Dakota extended cab model with a silver toolbox in the bed and no license plates.
If you see it, contact Roseville Police at: (916) 774-5000.