DOLLINGSTOWN man Aaron Dowey has told how heartless thieves broke into his home last week and stole treasured memories of his murdered father.
Aaron’s father Keith was one of four men gunned down at Castor Bay by the Provisional IRA in 1990. Among the items taken during the burglary at Kensington Court last Tuesday, was the wedding ring he’d been wearing when he was murdered.
The robbers also took jewellery belonging to Aaron’s grandfather, who was killed in a tragic cycling accident.
Aaron, who lives with his mother and his grandmother, told the ‘MAIL’: “They got away with a lot of cash that I’d put behind a frame in my bedroom. I was saving up for a holiday.
“But the cash isn’t important. What annoys us the most is they took all the jewellery that was in the house.
“Most of the jewellery that I wear is my dad’s stuff. They took all that including his wedding ring. It’s all my mum really has left of him. She’s very cut up about it.
“One of dad’s rings they took was very distinctive. It was a gold ring with a black stone with a diamond in the middle of it.”
Jewellery was also stolen that had belonged to Aaron’s mother and his grandfather Jim McCormick, who was knocked down and killed in a cycling accident in 1979.
“A lot of my granddad’s stuff was engraved,” said Aaron. “These are things that are irreplaceable.”
Aaron explained what happened on the morning of the burglary. He said: “I was away to work and mum and gran left the house at 8.30. When my gran came back at about 9.30 or a quarter to 10 she heard someone upstairs. She thought it was me and shouted up, but then she checked outside again and my car wasn’t there.
“She went back into the kitchen and saw that the back door was lying open. They’d smashed the glass with a spade and broken in.
“When the police came they were able to get footprints from the kitchen surfaces. They said they must have been in mum’s bedroom when my gran called up the stairs, then jumped out the window.
“In a way I’m glad they didn’t come back down the stairs because you hear stories about pensioners being attacked.”
Aaron said he hoped the ‘scum’ who took his family’s heirlooms would slip up by bragging about their crimes. He urged the community in Lurgan and Dollingstown to keep their ears to the ground and pass on any information to police that could help with the investigation.
Aaron added: “Anybody who knows us will know our family history and will know how much dad and granddad’s jewellery meant to us. I hope the people who did this read the paper and realise what they’ve done.”