Sunday 25 September 2016

Grieving family deliberately targeted by thieves who ransack their home as they attend funeral of loved one

Sarah-Jane Murphy

Published 08/08/2015 | 16:24

Lance Simon and his daughter Shannon Simon
Lance Simon and his daughter Shannon Simon
Thieves left Bridget's house in a terrible state

A family who's home was ransacked as they attended the funeral of a close relative have spoken of their shock and disgust at being deliberately targeted.

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Bridget Fallon-Simon, her husband Lance, and their four children were attending the funeral of Bridget's brother-in-law Michael Bates in Bridgetown, Co Wexford when thieves struck.

Mr Bates, who built Bridget's house, tragically fell from a roof of another property while painting its chimney last week.

"The news about Michael's death was on the front page of the Wexford People, everyone in my area knew we were related to him and would be at the funeral.

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"I did think about the fact that the house would be unoccupied all day as it's never ever empty but I dismissed it," she told Independent.ie

The calculating thieves stole €350 in savings belonging to Bridget's daughter Shannon (18), vintage pearls that Bridget's mother had given to her on her wedding day and her late father-in-law's wedding ring.

"The fact that the pearls were taken is heart-breaking.

Read More: Burglar jailed after stealing jewellery

"I had planned to pass them onto my daughter on her wedding day," Bridget said.

Jewellery, silver items and numerous christening gifts were also taken from the house in Kilmore, Co Wexford.

Three of Bridget's children arrived home at about 7pm and interrupted the robbery.

"They had absolutely thrashed the place beyond recognition.

"I'm speechless that this happened to our home.

"It's bad enough to set out to rob someone's house but to do it on the day they are burying a loved one is an utter violation," she said.

Bridget said she reported the incident to the gardai but so far no items have been recovered.

"It would be fantastic if we could get the pearls and the rings back.

"I was so touched by how people responded to Michael's death.

"Then I saw the very worst of humanity, those people really are the lowest of the low," she said.

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