Colorado family victim of truck theft with son’s ashes inside
DELTA, Colo. (KKCO/Gray News) - Sierra and AJ Navarro made the trip from Delta County, Colorado, to St. Michaels, Arizona, to spread the ashes of their newborn, Sawyer. The baby died at just 51 days old.
Sawyer was diagnosed with a rare condition, Heterotaxy Syndrome, which is a birth defect that causes the heart and other organs to fail.
“The doctors pretty much told us they were out of options for him. So, we ended up having to take him off the ventilator and off of his life support with the amount of medications they had to keep his heart functioning somewhat normally,” Sierra Navarro, Sawyer’s mother, said.
He died on Dec. 23, 2021. Sierra told KKCO they picked out an urn and had him cremated the following day.
“And you know, just last Tuesday down to Arizona, and his ashes were in our truck, and that’s just kind of when all the drama happened,” Sierra Navarro said.
The family ended up staying at a hotel in St. Michaels, Arizona. While they were preparing to leave the following morning to spread Sawyer’s ashes, AJ Navarro went out to start the truck before going back inside to grab his bag.
“And all of a sudden, I heard my engine rev really high. I thought something was going on with the truck,” he said.
So, AJ sprinted outside and noticed someone was in the front seat of his truck.
“I was confused there for a second. I tried to get them to get out,” he said.
Surveillance video from a business behind the hotel shows two suspects hopping inside the truck and AJ running outside and punching the vehicle’s window. Then AJ can be seen jumping into the truck’s bed, trying to retrieve tools. That’s when the truck gains traction.
“All I was thinking right then and there, ‘You can have the truck. I just want my son.’ The urn was in there,” AJ Navarro said.
He tried breaking the back window with a tool but then decided it was best to jump out of the truck. He suffered a few bruises and cuts.
“I just had this feeling that, ‘Okay, my wife is still at the hotel, my daughter is still at the hotel,’” AJ Navarro said.
Sierra Navarro was back in the hotel room with the authorities on the phone. She describes feeling sick to her stomach.
“Because you don’t want your baby to be with people like that,” she said. “Even if it’s just ashes, you just don’t want that. He already went through so much.”
Later that afternoon, when they were making their way back to Colorado, authorities reached out to them.
“They contacted us at 6:30 in the evening. They called and said, ‘Hey, we might’ve located your vehicle,’” AJ Navarro said.
The family received the urn on Jan. 26. They plan to head back to Arizona to spread Sawyer’s ashes on the grave of AJ Navarro’s mother.
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