If you've spotted any giant colons around the Kansas City area in the past few days, the police would like to hear from you. As The Wichita Eagle reports, an inflatable model of the large intestine has been stolen from the University of Kansas Cancer Center, and now law enforcement officials are on the hunt for the bowel bandit.
The colon is the property of the Colon Cancer Coalition, an organization that promotes awareness of colorectal cancer. As people walk through the colon, it depicts the progression of cancer through its various stages, highlighting the importance of regular screenings. "Colon cancer is a tough subject for many to talk about and the giant, 150-pound, 10-foot-long inflatable colon is a great conversation starter," John Ashcraft, DO, surgical oncologist at the University of Kansas Cancer Center, said in a statement.
The Coalition lends the educational tool to events around the Midwest, and it was set to be featured in a walk/run in Kansas City, Missouri's Swope Park before it was stolen the night of Friday, October 19. The colon was last seen in the bed of a pickup truck parked in the Brookside area of Kansas City, and police are calling on the public to share any potential leads.
The prop is valued at $4000, and the Cancer Coalition has a plan to replace it in case the inflatable organ thief isn't found. The organization's crowdfunding campaign to buy a new one has already raised $860, and local radio station KRBZ 96.5 has been calling for its return in the form of colon cover songs (like singing "give the colon back, don't be a hemorrhoid" to the tune of Blink-182's "Man Overboard"). If the colon does turn up, all the money that's donated will go to funding further screening, education, and awareness for colon and rectal cancer.
[h/t The Wichita Eagle]