Community raises thousands to replace photographer’s stolen equipment

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – The community is coming together to help after a local photographer says his livelihood was taken away by thieves.

Jesse Gordon is a professional photographer in Fort Wayne.

After a long night at work, he said he was tired and decided to leave his equipment in his car overnight for the first time. It’s a decision he soon came to regret.

Gordon said someone broke into his car a few weeks ago and stole $6,000 worth of cameras, lights, and other equipment.

He said it was a big hit on his family as the photography business is a main source of income.

“I’m married, and it takes two to run this house, and all of the sudden someone loses more than one half of what they should be bringing in business-wise. Plus now we have to replace $6,000,” Gordon explained. “I still hope it shows up, but it’s hard to have faith in humanity when you have that much stolen.”

But his faith in humanity was soon restored, thanks to a friend and people in the community.

Gordon’s friend created a Gofundme account to help raise money to replace the equipment that Gordon had collected over the past 8 years. The campaign has raised more than $3,500 in less than two weeks.

Gordon said he doesn’t really know how to feel about the situation, but he’s thankful for the help people have given.

“It’s weird,” Gordon said. “That was probably the biggest night that broke me down was to see how fast my community came together and is still coming together, as far as sharing and donating. Anything anyone can do to help, they’ve been helping.”

Gordon said his experience should serve as a warning to people to be careful about leaving valuable items in their cars, even if it’s right out in front of their house.

He said he’s learned from this experience and will never make that mistake again.