ELMHURST, Ill. (WGN) — An Illinois family is devastated after a burglar stole their baby’s ashes while ransacking their home.
Sue LaDeur said someone burglarized her home Tuesday, smashing a window to get in. She said they stole a few items, including coins, but the worst part was that they stole a little white box containing her son’s ashes.
Her son, Billy Pax, was a twin born with his brother, Matt. LaDeur gave birth nine weeks early – Matt was healthy, but Billy had health issues and his parents knew from the start that he was very sick. Billy died after just 10 days.
LaDeur kept the small box of ashes on her dresser along with a small cast of his hand and foot — all that his parents had left to cherish.
“The ashes are in a little white box. It’s like 3 inches by 3 inches, about an inch high, so maybe they thought it was a jewelry box and they just took it,” LaDeur said.
Now Billy’s mother and his father, Jim, are pleading with the thief - or thieves - to have a heart and to return the ashes.
“It’s of no value to anybody, but it’s invaluable to us," she said. "Please do the right thing."
“It’s all we have left of our child. Let us have that back,” Billy’s father said.
Billy died five years ago. The LaDeurs were planning to bury his ashes with them when they died. The couple said it's also important they get them back because their Catholicism calls for the ashes to be buried in consecrated ground.
They said the box has the name of the crematorium on it.
The parents said the person who has the ashes can return them to the crematorium or put them in the mail.
Elmhurst police are investigating. Anyone with information is asked to come forward.