SALT LAKE CITY -- Fourth of July morning kicked off a celebration for many, but not for the Abrahamson family.
Robin Abrahamson and her two kids were staying at the Holiday Inn Express at the International Center in Salt Lake City, just west of the airport.
The night before, at around 8 p.m., they parked their van and trailer, which was carrying the last odds and ends from their home, in the parking lot. The family is moving from South Carolina to Washington state.
Abrahamson's husband is in the Army and had just flown out of Salt Lake City to go back to work. She and the kids would be meeting him in Washington soon.
When Abrahamson and her children walked out of the hotel around 11 a.m. on July 4th, they saw their trailer was missing.
"Somebody had cut the lock that was securing the trailer to the van, and what we're thinking happened is they disconnected everything from the van after the lock was clipped, pulled it over to a different vehicle to re-hook it up and then pull it away from the parking lot," Abrahamson explained.
She said she immediately called 911 and made a police report.
In about 15 minutes, Salt Lake City police called her back and said they found the trailer. It was about five miles away, ditched on a back road. The newly registered Washington license plate was ripped off and the boxes inside were toppled over in a mess.
"They took everything from something like as easy as cleaning supplies and a vacuum cleaner, to tools," Abrahamson said.
After sorting through the boxes, she found some other things missing, like prescription medication, a computer's external hard drive called a DOBO that had a lot of personal information stored on it, credit cards, passports, family pictures, and some firearms that were family heirlooms.
One of the firearms is engraved with initials. Abrahamson said it says either D.L. Greeb or D. Greeb.
Abrahamson and her kids plan to spend a few days with friends in Utah, waiting to see if anything of theirs will turn up. She said they have moved a lot in the last 20 years, but this is the first time they have been robbed.
She said they are always cautious and plan ahead, and they make sure to stay at a reputable hotel in a safe area where plenty of eyes can see any suspicious activity happening. She said she did park under the parking lot lights that night, but the van and trailer were unfortunately just out of sight of surveillance cameras.
Police said parking in view of cameras is incredibly helpful. If you cannot do that, Lt. Robin Heiden with Salt Lake City Police recommends talking to hotel security.
"Maybe ask them to walk around your trailer extra that night," she said.
Anyone with information about this theft is asked to call Salt Lake City Police.