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‘I’ve lost him all over again,’ Woman devastated after thieves steal car filled with sentimental keepsakes

OKLAHOMA CITY – Authorities say a child’s ashes are stolen in the metro and now they are searching for the culprit.

As the family was moving to Amarillo on Saturday, the victim’s white Ford Taurus suddenly broke down along I-40.

“As we hit the brakes, the brake pad snapped and we hit the curb and took out a tire,” said Melissa Brown.

Melissa and her husband pulled into the Garden Ridge parking lot, near I-40 and S. MacArthur Blvd., and asked the manager if they could leave the car there for the night.

“He said the car was there at 11 p.m. Saturday when he left work and when he went back at 7 a.m. Sunday, it was gone,” said Brown.

In the trunk of the car was the thing that mattered most to Melissa, a box of ashes of her dead child.

“To lose something that was physically part of me, I can’t describe in words how bad it hurts,” said Brown. “It’s horrific to think somebody has my child’s ashes.”

Last year, Melissa gave birth to a stillborn son and had a box of keepsakes, including his ashes, castings of his hands and feet, a stuffed dog and a blanket, inside a box in the car’s trunk.

“We were going to scatter his ashes when we found the right place,” said Brown. “I feel like I’ve lost him all over again. I won’t have closure because we can’t lay his remains to rest. I mean I know they didn’t know the ashes were in the trunk, but they shouldn’t have stolen the car.”

Police told the victim it may have been a criminal with a tow truck, which they say is a common crime in that area.

Unfortunately, Garden Ridge did not have cameras at the back of the parking lot so there’s no video to show of the thieves.

Anyone with information on the crime is asked to contact police.