Families left 'devastated' by theft of memorials from Swansea church
HEARTLESS thieves have dealt a blow to families at a Swansea church after making off with more than 100 brass memorial plaques.
They unscrewed the plaques bearing the names of the dead off the memorial wall of Holy Cross Catholic Church in Gendros leaving members of the congregation absolutely devastated at the discovery.
Some had paid tribute to former service personnel who had battled in the Second World War.
Retired Ronald Morgan, 75, of Gendros, said people had been left heartbroken by the news as the time of year was even more poignant, with remembrance services taking place in November.
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He added that November was also the month of the Holy Souls.
Mr Morgan said: "The thieves took all of the 101 brass memorials off the wall.
"There were little plaques on the walls with parishioners' relatives names on them and they took them all off the wall even though it's Remembrance coming up.
"One of my wife's friends in the church was breaking her heart on Sunday morning when she heard the plaques had been stolen.
"I could hear the gasp in the church — it's so disappointing that people do things like that."
He added: "The plaques were five inches by four inches.
"It's been reported to the police but we don't believe anything has been found as yet."
Mr Morgan said throughout November there would be a series of masses to remember the dead at the Upper Kings Head Road church.
"November is the month of the Holy Souls," he added.
"It's a time for remembering the dead at this time of year.
"People attend masses for their dead relatives and people go to the garden at a quiet time.
"They may stand and say a prayer for them."
He called on scrap dealers to alert the police if they had been contacted by someone trying to sell on the brass plaques.
Mr Morgan said: "If a scrap dealer has had them offered to them they should refuse to buy them and they should have the decency to hand them back.
"People were visibly upset to find that their mother and father's names had gone along with those who were in the Second World War.
"On November 11 we have a Remembrance Service and that's when the garden is re-dedicated to those who fought in the World Wars as well as their families."
He revealed some of the haul of plaques stolen contained the names of some of his family.
But stressed his heart went out to all those who had been targeted in the theft.
A South Wales Police spokesman confirmed they were looking into the incident.
He said: "We are investigating the thefts of around 100 plaques from the memorial gardens at Holy Cross Church hall at Upper Kings Head Road some time between 7pm on Thursday and 3pm on Friday."
Anyone with further information on the incident is asked to contact 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.