Community helps support Albuquerque woman who had her car stolen

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — When Cheryl Vargas walked out her door Sunday morning, she was shocked to find that her SUV was stolen, along with three car seats for her grandchildren and her landscaping equipment. Luckily, her neighborhood stepped up to support her.

The single grandmother of three quit her day job to take care of her three young grandchildren.

“My daughter has drug problems,” Vargas said. “She loves her kids with all of her heart, but that addiction just tears at her. She can’t stay away.”

Vargas started her own business in order to have more flexible hours.

“I do landscaping and housekeeping,” she said.

After Vargas’ car was stolen, her livelihood was taken, too.

“Devastating. I mean, just everything came crashing down, because even though it was only my landscaping tools, I couldn’t even clean because I couldn’t get anywhere, and had no way to get to a job,” she said.

Vargas created a post on Next Door, asking neighbors if she could borrow any landscaping tools until she had enough money to buy her own.

“It was amazing. People were offering to buy me stuff and give me money, go through all their old tools, anything that had duplicates of. It was just really overwhelming. It just melted my heart really,” she said.

A lawn mower that was once collecting dust in someone else’s garage is now hers. Vargas said her ex-boyfriend let her borrow his work truck, and a stranger even donated three brand-new car seats.

“All hope was lost, you know. I didn’t expect the response that I got to be honest, and I was amazed,” she said.

To Vargas, the business was always much more than a way to make a living. It was a chance for her daughter to have more stability after getting sober.

“She can help me and stay busy and maybe not go back to the drugs,” she said.

With the help of her neighbors, Vargas is looking ahead toward a bright future.