Dad searching for four-year-old’s lost teddy bear with recording of her late mother’s heartbeat

It’s always heartbreaking for a child when a beloved toy goes missing, but it’s especially heartbreaking for one four-year-old girl — her missing teddy bear also has a very special connection to her late mother..

Now, the search is on to bring this one-of-a-kind toy bear home after it was accidentally donated.

Tylor Kennedy’s four-year-old daughter loves her tie-dye rainbow teddy bear from Build-a-Bear. It’s not just a colorful plaything: it’s the only thing she has of her late mother.

Facebook/The Big ONE 106.3 FM WRIL (Screenshot)
The bear was custom-made with a recording of her mother’s heartbeat. “My daughter’s mom passed away and her grandma made her bear with her mom’s heartbeat in it,” Tylor Kennedy told WATE.

It’s the kind of very special, sentimental item you would want to keep forever — but sadly, the bear is now missing after the family inadvertently donated it to a local Goodwill in Tazewell, Tennessee.

Joni Hanebutt /
“The father came back to see if it was still there after he realized his mistake, but it was already gone,” said Cindy Dodson, communications director for Goodwill Industries Knoxville, according to The Guardian.

“Unfortunately our staff don’t know if something is donated by mistake or has sentimental value,” Dodson said. “We’re doing our best to get the word out that this little girl would like her teddy bear back, and we’re hopeful that she will.”

The family is now desperate to get the bear back and have been spreading the word, hoping that someone sees their story and returns it.

The manager of the Goodwill store hopes that the bear was purchased by a local and is still in the area. She put up a sign in the store, pleading for its return and offering to reimburse the buyer. The sign says that the four-year-old “really wants it back.”

The story was shared on Facebook by a local radio station 106.3 FM WRIL and soon received nationwide attention. The post includes two photos of similar-looking bears, and in the comments the station shared a video of the real bear taken by the child’s grandmother.

The post has been shared over 23,000 times on Facebook. On April 17, the station shared an update from Tylor saying that he “wants to thank everyone for trying to help find this bear.”

As of now, the teddy bear remains missing. We can only hope someone hears the news and returns it soon, getting this very special bear back to its 4-year-old owner.

Please help spread the word and share this story on social media! 🧸❤️

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