Betty Reid Soiskin, the oldest park ranger in the U.S., suffered a serious beating earlier this week when an unknown man entered her home in Richmond, California. But aside from viciously attacking the 94-year-old woman, the intruder also stole some of her belongings, including a special commemorative coin given to her by U.S. President Barrack Obama.
According to Soiskin, the incident happened at around midnight on Monday. Around that time, she woke up to find a man standing by her bed holding a flashlight. She tried to grab her cellphone to alert authorities but the man immediately took the mobile device away from her and dragged her through the hallway outside her room.
The intruder then began to beat her on the side of her face using his fist which left her badly bruised. Thankfully, Soiskin was able to get away from him by locking herself inside the bathroom. She then armed herself with a plugged iron in case the man tries to enter.
I fully expected he was going to kill me," she told KTVU. "He doubled up his fist and hit me a couple of times on the sides of my face with all his might.
With Soiskin inside the bathroom, the man began ransacking her house by taking her various possessions such as her laptop, jewelry, cellphone and her iPad. He also stole various commemorative coins including the one given to her by Obama in December for being the oldest active park ranger in the U.S.
Upon hearing about the incident, U.S. Interior Secretary Sall Jewell said that Obama will send another commemorative coin to replace the one lost by Soiskin. This was confirmed by Tom Leatherman, the superintendent of the Riveter World War II Home Front National Historical Park, where Soiskin works as a ranger and tour guide.
Leatherman also noted that Soiskin is currently doing but she is still deeply affected about what happened to her.
"She's got some bruises," he said according to the SF Gate. "She really doesn't want to see people because she doesn't really want people to see her like that."
Officers of the Richmond Police Department have no leads yet regarding the exact identity of the suspect but they described him as a white male that's about 5'8" with a slim build and possibly in his early to mid-20s.