Wheelchair stolen from San Francisco man day after Thanksgiving in San Jose

Life for Doug Hosterman has been different ever since thieves stole his electric wheelchair the day after Thanksgiving.

“It takes me forever right now to get to the corner store,” he said. 

Hosterman, 62, lives in San Francisco with his dog Sheldon. They took a trip to San Jose to spend Thanksgiving with his friend Angie Ploch.  

He used a chain to lock the chair up in front of his friend’s parked vehicle, but apparently, that didn’t deter thieves. 

“When I went down there the padlock and the cable were there, but the chair was gone,” Hosterman said. 

 Hosterman said he and Ploch went looking for the chair throughout the neighborhood, but came up empty-handed. 

Hosterman said he got the chair only about seven months ago. He needed it because of his COPD (a pulmonary disease) and Arthritis. His friends said it has been his lifeline.

“He always locks it up wherever he goes because that’s a very valuable chair. It’s valuable to him. It’s like somebody stealing my car,” Ploch said.

Hosterman estimated the value of the chair to be about $6,000 and said insurance may get him a replacement but that could take at least six weeks. 

“I’ve been doing everything I can think of to get the word out there. I posted it on Facebook. I posted it on all of the ad papers I go to,” Hosterman said.  

He did file a police report with San Jose Police Department. He wants the chair back quickly. He’s asked anyone with information to email him at Hosterman18@gmail.com.