MANTECA (CBS13) – Two families are feeling relieved after some of their stolen personal items were found in the same U-Haul moving truck.
Tiffany Purcell and Brandy Sereno both moved out of the Bay Area, three months apart. Purcell went to Utah while Sereno moved to Manteca. On the morning of both of their moves, their packed U-Haul trucks were stolen — one in Modesto and the other while still in the Bay Area.
“I thought everything was gone,” Purcell said.
“It was heartbreaking. I didn’t want to tell the kids. I felt like I let them down. It was supposed to be a really happy day. We waited a month to get the keys,” Sereno, a mom of four, said.
Ready to give up, Sereno’s husband Lorenzo got a phone call from the Hayward Police Department.
“He looked like he saw a ghost. They found the truck. I immediately just cried,” Sereno said.
The ransacked moving truck had furniture, clothes, photos, and a box she didn’t quite recognize.
“I told him this whole box belongs to somebody else. It was all memorabilia stuff. Diplomas and someone’s first haircut,” Sereno said.
She took to social media to track down, Purcell, the rightful owner of the box. Purcell said the box also contained the outfits her children wore home from the hospital and their blankets.
“I looked her up on Facebook. She said ‘my blanket was in there’ that someone close to her made and letters to her husband,” Sereno said. “I wanted to cry for her because I have that in my garage.”
The women may not have been friends before, but now they say they’re connected forever.
“I absolutely feel like I know her. She is an amazing person,” Purcell said.
“We were both in each other’s shoes,” Sereno said.
CBS13 did reach out to the Modesto Police Department as well as U-Haul to see if there’s any indication these two incidents might be connected. We have not heard back yet.