VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Precious, irreplaceable items were stolen from an elderly man’s home in Virginia Beach.
U.S. Navy veteran Michael Gaughan, 76, sometimes uses a walker to get around. He has memorabilia in his home after he said he served 20 years in the Navy.
Gaughan got sick in late January and was encouraged to see a doctor.
“My wife talked me into going to the hospital," Gaughan said. "I said, 'OK' because I’m not one for running to the hospital."
Gaughan said when he got home that night, it was late and he was tired. He didn't notice until the next morning that his house had been broken into and things were missing.
He said whoever broke in caused $3,000 worth of damage to the windows and doors.
Gaughan said the burglars took a few hundred dollars’ worth of coins, but what he’s really upset about are his stolen Naval medals.
“I earned them. They can’t be replaced,” Gaughan said.
Gaughan said he had about nine medals that were given to him for his accomplishments during his two decades of service.
“Things that you’ve done. Things that you’re proud of,” Gaughan said. “We had an attack. The bus got shot up. Everyone was scurrying around. Nobody got killed, but there were plenty of holes in the bus.”
He said he got another for good conduct.
“Not everybody gets that,” Gaughan joked. “One they always say you get because you didn’t get caught.”
Virginia Beach Police said they’re investigating, but so far no one has been arrested.
Gaughan said he can live without the money.
“They can replace the coins, but they can’t replace the medals,” Gaughan said.