A priceless stolen bear in Vancouver, Canada, has found its way home.
Mara Soriano was moving between apartments and unloading her belongings when her teddy bear was taken on July 24. This wasn’t just any plush toy. The bear had the final recording ever taken of her late mother’s voice.
Soriano’s mother, Marilyn Soriano, took the recording before she had to go into hospice care for cancer. Soriano said that her mother’s voice was a lot softer once she was in hospice. So, the bear’s recording is a preservation of her mother’s normal voice. It sounds to Soriano like “the mom [she] grew up with.”
The contents of the recorded message are special, too:
She said that she loved me and she was proud of me and that she’ll always be with me.Mara Soriano
Also, the bear says “I love you” in Filipino, which is special to Soriano because the Philippines is her birthplace.
When the treasured toy disappeared, Soriano spoke to Deborah Goble, a reporter at CBC News, who then published her story.
Soon, Vancouver locals and people around the world were sharing the store and hoping for a happy ending. Actor Ryan Reynolds who was born in Vancouver took to Twitter to offer a reward for anyone who brought the toy back.
After a few tense days of waiting, the men who found the toy—“Mama Bear”— returned her to Soriano. They told her that they discovered the bear in Strathcona Park. The men are staying anonymous.
Soriano isn’t bothered by this or by any details of their story. She’s just content that the men “liberated” her bear.
The glasses that Mama Bear wore were missing, but apart from that, the Build-A-Bear was in great condition.
When Soriano beheld her bear again, she squeezed it to listen to the recording play. Hearing her mother’s voice brought her to tears.
Watch her reaction in CBC’s video.
Article source: CBC
Featured image source: Mara Soriano