SAN JOSE, Calif. (KTVU) - An 11-year-old autistic boy is in need of help as he desperately searches for his beloved stuffed animal. The stuffed wolf is not just any toy but a therapy companion he's had for years to help cope with anxiety.
Wherever you see Lucas Silvera, you're sure to see Ted. Ted is his stuffed animal that was given to Lucas on his 8th birthday from the San Francisco Zoo. The two are inseparable.
“He’s been with me for so long I feel like he's a part of me,” said Lucas Silvera.
From Lucas’s first plane ride to Hawaii, New Mexico, Disneyland to meeting celebrities, Ted is always with him. When it was time to snap school yearbook photos, Ted was there too.
“He’s the one who helps me when I feel alone,” said Lucas Silvera.
Their connection is deeper than what most children have with their stuffed animals. At age six, Lucas was diagnosed with autism.
“Because of his autism, his anxiety nearly everything is challenging for him,” said Mother Valorie Silvera. “It gives him someone to hug, feel safe with, talk to, and tell his words to.”
The stuffed wolf helps Lucas, now 11-years-old, cope with everything overwhelming to him until now.
“It was raining when I was hiding him under this exact jacket actually,” said Lucas Silvera.
Back on February 13, Lucas left his wolf in the lobby at Verity Medical Foundation on North Jackson Avenue in San Jose where his mother had a doctor's appointment.
“When we left, I was still in pain and I didn't realize he wasn't still holding him,” said Valorie Silvera.
Ted has a black Tile GPS tracker. Its last ping was the parking lot. It doesn't work inside the medical building. The family suspects a patient may have picked up the animal not realizing its value to Lucas.
“Seeing my son 11-year-old heartbroken, depressed,” said Valorie Silvera. “He's playing with his friends one minute and then stops and stares off in the distance.”
Since Ted’s disappearance, Lucas has received three of the exact stuffed animal who he refers to as Ted's cousins but to him, it's not the same.
“All three of them are not equal to one of him,” said Lucas Silvera.
The family hopes whoever has Ted the Wolf will see Lucas's pain and return him.
“Lot of hope, lot of sadness, lot of fear,” said Lucas Silvera. “I’m not going to give up for years that's how dedicated I am to finding him.”
Lucas has saved $7 for reward money. His parents are pitching in another $100. The wolf has a green collar, dog tags and not much fluff under the collar since Lucas has hugged him so much.
Anyone with information on Ted’s whereabouts can contact the family at (408) 393-3152.