Prescot Woman Thankful but Angry after Parents’ Headstone Found
A woman from Prescot is relieved after the missing headstone from her parents’ grave was discovered, thanks to help from Merseyside Police, Knowsley Council and members of the public.
Christine Climo, 38, however, is angry and upset that it had been removed and kept by a Merseyside business for as long as four weeks.
She visits the memorial, at Knowsley Cemetery on Fox’s Bank Lane, Whiston, on special occasions. She wouldn’t have known the headstone had been taken until Father’s Day if her 19-year-old daughter, who lives in Kirkby, hadn’t gone to pay her respects on Friday 29 May and found only the concrete base remaining.
Police quickly established that men had been seen taking away the headstone up to a month earlier. By Monday 1 June, they had located it in the stockyard of a Merseyside business.
It had been removed and stored there with no apparent permission from the owner or from the council, who must issue a permit for the removal of headstones.
“I have just one question, just three letters,” said Christine. “Why?”
She continued: “I broke down when I heard it had been found. It could have been destroyed.” The alleged theft devastated her because maintaining her parents’ memorial “was the last thing I could do for them.”
The monument, depicting the gates of heaven, has a photo and tribute to Christine’s mum, who died in 2004, on one side. The other side is currently blank, awaiting an inscription in memory of her dad, who passed away several years later.
Prescot-based stonemasons T Lyon and Sons have generously cleaned the retrieved headstone and are looking after it until Christine and her family can have the memorial completed.
Ms Climo thanks the council and police, who she says have gone “above and beyond” to help her recover the headstone.
A police investigation into the incident continues.