Folks step up to help out after robber steals $1,800 from food cart

Folks step up to help out after robber steals $1,800 from food cart

PORTLAND, Ore. -- A local food cart owner who was robbed over the Thanksgiving holiday went from despair to joy, thanks to the generosity of her community.

On Monday, Mary Sheridan said she'd received $3,200 in donations. Sheridan lost $1,800 in a burglary last week.

She said she planned to donate the extra money to charity.

Friday night, a burglar hit The Honey Pot food cart at Southeast 43rd and Belmont. The burglar took all of the money that owner and single mom Mary Sheridan had made during the holiday week.

"I was here all week making and selling pies and I left my cash in my cash box here, which I usually don't do, but I was on my way to a Thanksgiving celebration and I had an employee coming in the next day to open," Sheridan explained. "So I left the money for her."

But when Sheridan came back Saturday morning, her food cart had been broken into and all her cash - around $1,800 - was gone.

"This last week really was going to make up for slow sales for the next two months," Sheridan said.

"It's just a terrible time to have something like that happen," said customer Eon Lajoie.

"Oh, it was horrible," said customer Dominique Chishti. "I mean, you know, all this Thanksgiving money at a time when it's really hard for food carts."

Sheridan was worried about how she would pay the rent for her food cart and take care of her personal bills as well, like paying for her daughter's preschool. And she was so upset over what happened that she posted this note for the robber:

Photo by KATU Reporter Bob Heye.

Once word got out about what had happened to Sheridan, the community stepped up to help out.

"We heard it on Facebook and had some errands to do here anyway, so we though we would swing in," one couple told us.

People kept stopping by Sheridan's food cart all weekend and paying more than the amount due for their meals. Her cart actually sold out of pies on Saturday due to the rush and she got so many requests from people who wanted to help her out that she added a PayPal account to the Honey Pot website.

"It's pretty amazing," Sheridan said. "I had nothing and then this morning I woke up with enough at least to pay my rent."

"You just kind of get a chance to see the goodness in people when they can rally around a cause," Sheridan said. "And people did."

Sheridan (pictured below) did file a police report on the theft. Through donations, she has been able to recoup almost all of the money that she lost and she plans on giving any extra that comes in to charity. And she also said she will never leave cash in her food cart again.

Photo by KATU Reporter Bob Heye.