Aggieland Safari says $60,000 worth of equipment stolen overnight Sunday

BRYAN, Tex. (KBTX) -- The act of being burglarized can leave a person feeling violated. At Aggieland Safari, they’re trying to figure out a temporary solution after a gift was stolen from their property.

"You get that gut-wrenching feeling in your stomach that someone has been on your property and went through your things," said Aggieland Safari owner David Riley.

Riley is heartbroken this week.

"For someone to come into our place that we're trying to create something special here and do that to it, it hurts. It hurts deep down," Riley said.

Less than one week after the owners opened the doors, equipment was stolen.

"Somebody came through the back part of the property, climbed over the fence, got into the shop area and stole one our tractors," Riley said.

The Massey Ferguson 4709 tractor was donated by WRI Outdoors & Tractors to assist special needs children.

"We try to bring good things into the community and it happens to take a turn for the worst," said Jeremy Boyd with WRI Outdoors & Tractors.

Late Sunday night, someone snuck in and stole the gift, along with generators and other tools.

"We actually had our first field trip with special needs kids Monday morning, and when we went to get the tractor and hook it up to the trailer, that's when we saw that it was missing," Riley said.

The tractor should be helping kids see all 450 acres of the zoo's property, but now the staff at Aggieland Safari is scrambling to find an alternative.

"It's pretty much our home now, it's our life, we're dedicating everything we have to this,” Riley continued. "It kind of tugs at your heartstrings because that was a special tractor for us."

WRI says they're working to try to get them a replacement tractor soon.