The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

August 9, 2013

Our Readers Speak — Friday, August 9, 2013

The Register-Herald

— When a loved one passes away, some friends and family members find it comforting to leave special items at the gravesite like a certain flower, books and more often solar lights of some kind.

Are these items expensive? Are they heirlooms? Are they irreplaceable?

I would certainly hope not for the simple reason that thieves seem to have no boundaries at all.

My nephew passed away recently and was laid to rest at Sunset Memorial Park in Beckley.

The tragedy shocked our entire family but had a devastating affect on my daughter, who was more like a sister to him than a cousin, being born days apart and growing up together and remaining close through their adulthood.

She visits his grave daily and has placed a solar light at his grave, if nothing more than to “keep his light shining on.”

However, on more than one occasion, a thief or thieves have stolen the light.

Can it be replaced? Sure. Will it be? Absolutely! But what type of person can steal from the dead?

How low can you get to walk through a cemetery and destroy markers, steal flowers and grab lights? Why?

If you need the light, there are agencies that will help with that.

If you would ask, there are people that would just give you one, but to just take it to light your sidewalk or porch or just because you can is pretty sad. Especially where you took it from and because it has no special meaning to you at all.

So, to those thieves out there that find it necessary to steal, destroy or deface at a cemetery, just remember that some day you may be in the ground as well.

I hope you have asked God to forgive you for the thefts you committed in the past, otherwise where you are going, you won’t need a light.

Marie Clay