Manukau Courier : December 14th 2010
www.manukaucourier.co.nz Tuesday, December 14, 2010 Ashes in stolen pots Devastated: Tony Smith with a picture of his mother Hazel who's ashes were stolen when thieves made off with two large pots from his garden. Photos: DAVID TAURANGA Gone: The section of the backyard where the Smiths kept their two large glazed pots. By DAVID TAURANGA GIVE us a break. That's the plea from Wattle Downs man Tony Smith whose mother's ashes were taken by thieves. The ashes were in one of two large glazed pots stolen along with a concrete seat from Mr Smith's backyard while he and wife Carolyn were on a two-week holiday. Mr Smith planted the pot with his mother Hazel's favourite flowers. It was a beautiful reminder of his mum each year when they bloomed, he says. The pots are not that expensive but losing his mum's ashes and the feeling of being burgled really hurt''. It would have taken at least two men built like gorillas'' to remove the stolen items. The pots measure half-a- metre in diameter and, like the concrete seat, are extremely heavy. Mr Smith wants them back. Coming home and dis- covering them missing was just really gross. It's just so sad,'' he says. I can imagine the pots going to a granny as a Christmas gift but if you have any belief in karma would you really want it in your backyard? If I could get across to thieves that it's Christmas -- for God's sake give us a break for at least a month. Surely the season has some meaning to people.'' The couple's garden backs on to a reserve overlooking the Manukau Harbour and Mr Smith believes the thieves must have seen his pots as they walked past his home. Also in the reserve is a seat he installed around four years ago. It's identical to the one stolen from his garden but this one is concreted in place. It's a beautiful spot and I installed the seat because people would come along and sit on the grass. Sometimes they were in a bad way emotionally or there'd be lovers, families, all sorts really,'' Mr Smith says. Obviously someone must have liked that seat a lot because they've seen my one and decided to nick off with it.''Mr Smith is offering a reward to anyone who can provide information that leads to an arrest. But if the thieves suddenly have an attack of con- science'' and the items are returned he will withdraw his complaint to police and write it off as ''one of those bad calls''. Thieves just don't know the sort of harm they are doing to people. It might just be money but they don't know the stories that are behind items,'' he says. Senior sergeant Tony Van says police are investigating but have no leads. They're appealing for any infor- mation. Pots and concrete seats are not commonly stolen so the thieves might well have stood out to observant people, he says. The green-coloured pots are identical and the three- part white concrete seat has distinctive scalloped edges. Email Mr Smith at tony email@example.com with any information, or contact your local police station or call Crimestoppers on 0800-555-111.
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