A mum has made a desperate plea for help to find her terminally ill son’s specially modified van after it was stolen from outside their Hackney home.

The family of 13-year-old Elijah Cariazo, who has a rare muscular condition that makes breathing and swallowing difficult, use a specially modified grey Ford Transit Custom van to carry his bulky medical equipment.

On Tuesday (March 26), they woke to discover that the van had gone from outside their home in Loanda Close, just days before they were due to go on holiday for Easter.

Elijah's mother, Onessa, has described the van as her son’s “lifeline” and said that without it he “cannot see in his final days”.

Hackney Gazette: Elijah Cariazo (middle) needs the van to 'see in his final days'Elijah Cariazo (middle) needs the van to 'see in his final days' (Image: Metropolitan Place)

She added: Every day is an extension, and we thank God.

"This vehicle cannot be easily replaced and it is his 14 birthday in a few short days.

“We had hoped to take him away with his medical team to enjoy the surroundings of the countryside which he loves so much.”

Police have now appealed for the public’s help to locate the van, which took nine months to fully customise and is required to take Elijah to hospital appointments.

CCTV footage suggests that two men broke into the van, before driving off into Clarissa Street.

The van was then seen turning left again into Lee Street, towards Kingsland Road.

The suspects have been described as white men, both around 5 foot 10 inches tall and of slim build. They were seen wearing black tracksuits and one was wearing a rucksack.

Hackney Gazette: The specially modified grey Ford Transit Custom was stolen last weekThe specially modified grey Ford Transit Custom was stolen last week (Image: Metropolitan Police)

The van has one missing hubcap on the rear right-hand side and has a distinctive sticker for the wheelchair ramp on the back doors.

Onessa added: "If you see a vehicle of this colour parked up unattended or don’t recognise it, please report it to the police, it may be nothing, but we need everyone to keep their eyes peeled and thank them in advance, this means so much to our family.”

Anyone with any information is urged to call 101 quoting reference 01/141980/24.

To remain anonymous contact the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.