Exiles Forum

Lisburn, Co. Antrim, Northern Ireland


Husband of ill woman pleads for the return of stolen locket

A GLENAVY man whose wife is seriously ill with cancer has made a heartfelt plea to thieves who stole a religious charm from his house.

Ray Matthews, whose wife Gloria has breast cancer, had a sentimental silver locket which had been given to them by a friend taken from his Riverside Court home a fortnight ago.

The locket belonged to a Franciscan Monk from Donegal and it had travelled all over the world. It came to the couple through a family friend and has a mini set of rosary beads and leaf inset.

The family were asleep in the house at the time the break-in occurred a few weeks ago. Ray had gone to bed around 1.30am and it was only when he woke around 8am the following morning that he found burglars had broken into his house and stolen his car and some household goods as well as a child's car seat.

But is it the silver locket that means the most to the family and they are desperate to have it returned.

" It is very sentimental to us and gives us hope," said Ray.

His wife had just been home from the Ulster Hospital a few days when the break-in occurred and had placed the locket in a bag for safe keeping in the house.

Since the break in some of the items, including a briefcase, the bag which Contained the locket, have been recovered in the Falls Park in Belfast. The car was also recovered - at Leathemstown Reservoir - but the locket has not been returned.

"If someone knows where it is can they just return it," said Ray. "If they want to send it to someone who can then send it to us that's fine, but we really need it back.

"I have spent hours looking for it, sometimes ankle deep in water - that is how important it is to us.'

Ray is still coming to terms with the anguish of the break in at such a difficult time.

"I think that they were simply opportunist thieves," he said. "But it is very distressing for us we are just praying that the locket sent back to us."

Anyone who knows the whereabouts of the silver locket can contact Mary Magee at the Ulster Star on 02892-679111

Ulster Star