NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The hunt is on for a heartless thief on Staten Island that robbed a man trying to raise money for a 5-year-old boy suffering from a rare form of cancer.

On Monday the boy’s family spoke out, hoping the crime will bring awareness to children’s cancer research.

Mikey Weinstein is a little bundle of enthusiasm you can’t help but fall in love with, reports CBS 2’s Hazel Sanchez. Mikey’s energy is remarkable considering he’s suffering from a rare form of cancer which is coating his brain and spine with cancerous tumors.

His mother Christine Lograno-Weinstein said Mikey’s symptoms are debilitating.

“He has occasional hand tremors. He fatigues easily.” Lograno-Weinstein said.

A volunteer on Staten Island wanted to raise money for cancer research in Mikey’s name. He set up a table outside a home in Dongen Hills, giving away toys for donations, and had left the table for just a few minutes when a heartless thief came along.

“There was woman loading the bags, toys and a jug, with my son’s picture, all about how it was going to help kids with cancer,” Lograno-Weinstein said.

No one person got a good look at the woman. She sped away with an undetermined amount of cash that would have gone to the St. Baldrick’s Foundation for children’s cancer research.

“I know she must have been desperate. And I do feel for her. But who knows if that money would have gone to the doctor that would have saved my kid,” Lograno-Weinstein said.

The Weinsteins said they’ll focus on the positives for now. Mikey gets chemotherapy once a week and his last visit showed positive signs the treatment was working.

“There’s hope there. There absolutely is. We’re expecting miracles,” Lograno-Weinstein said.

And hoping continued research will soon find a cure.

St. Baldrick’s Foundation has raised more than $26 million for children’s cancer research this year.

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