Holiday Season Theft Includes Man’s Ashes, Family Heirlooms

AKRON, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio man is hoping thieves who swiped boxes from his porch that contained family heirlooms will have a little holiday spirit and return the items.

Footsteps in the snow led Kyle Barron to suspect the thieves grabbed the packages last week from his Akron home thinking they were valuable Christmas gifts.

Instead, he said, the boxes were filled with his late mother’s belongings that he had shipped from Oregon after she died last month. They contained an urn holding his father’s ashes, family photographs dating back generations and antique Asian teapots and vases, Barron said.

“There were pictures in there from 200 years ago — my great-grandfather and great-grandmother, grandmother, grandfather, none of whom I ever met — this is all I have to remember them by,” Barron told WKYC-TV.

He said he just wants the items back — no questions asked. In return, he’ll offer his deepest gratitude and maybe a monetary reward.

“Every day since they got stolen, I’ve been remembering things I packed in there,” Barron, 32, told The Akron Beacon Journal. “I want it all back partly just so I know it’s not in a landfill somewhere.”

Barron said the local post office told him they delivered the boxes and aren’t liable for the stolen items.

Spokesman David Van Allen said the U.S. Postal Service can only offer a refund for the shipping costs. The post office is empathetic, he said, adding that mail theft is a federal crime.

“We certainly regret the service experienced by this customer and have reached out to him with sincere apologies for this difficult situation,” Van Allen said.

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