The Boston Fire Department says a thief made off with the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) collection boot and the metal box it was attached to outside of the Boylston Street firehouse Saturday night.
Lt Santos Ortiz of the Boston fire Department said, "it was secured with a lag bolt in the concrete and a chain with a padlock. It also had a cowbell in it so if it was moved it would rattle loud and echo inside the container."
The diamond plate box had sentimental meaning, crafted from the back bumper of the old Ladder 2.
The firehouse is home to Boston Fire Department Engine 33 Ladder 15, the firehouse of fallen Lieutenant Ed Walsh and Firefighter Michael Kennedy. Last year, money collected in the boot benefited a fund set up in their memory.
Lt. Santos Ortiz says it's saddening for the kids. "I've done a lot of functions for MDA. When you see the kids there and they are frull of life despite all the troubles in life they have to deal with," he said.
Out-of-town visitors to the firehouse were disgusted to hear about the theft.
Andrea Beck of Pennsylvania said, "to put that much time and effort into taking something that means that much is ridiculous."
Megan Matta said," I think it's lower than low even to just try to steal it...just to take the money.. It's going to help sick families. It's absolutely ridiculous. It takes a certain kind of person to think they are entitled to that and enough to steal it."
It's unknown how much money was taken, but about $6,000 is collected throughout the year and the box is periodically emptied.
Fire officials say the selfishness of this one person pales in comparison to all the generosity and support they have received.