THE GRIEVING mother of a baby girl who lived for one day has asked whoever took the teddy bears from her grave to find it in their heart to return them.
Mary McCarthy’s first child, Skylar, died in early September after being diagnosed with a Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia.
The Hospital woman and her partner, Anthony, visit Skylar’s grave every weekend in Kilteely cemetery.
Last Saturday, the couple went to Kilteely at 1pm to discover that all her teddies were stolen from the grave.
Ms McCarthy made an appeal on Live 95FM’s Limerick Today programme on Monday for them to be put back. The story was the most read on the Limerick Leader website and made national news.
Speaking this Wednesday morning, Ms McCarthy said the couple visited Skylar’s grave on Tuesday but there was no sign of the teddies.
“I was there on Tuesday and they weren’t there. I won’t be going down again until Thursday and Saturday,” said Ms McCarthy, who appealed to the perpetrators to find it in their hearts to restore them.
Last Saturday, the couple had taken another teddy down with ‘I love you’ written on it. They placed that teddy in the graveyard but when they returned at 6pm that teddy was gone as well.
“I was heartbroken. It is just cruel to do something like that. We are very upset over the whole thing. She was only a day old. It was very traumatic. We are only coming to the stage now that we realise that we don’t have her.
“I was told I was having a healthy little baby. I didn’t know anything until after I was sectioned and I was told the baby was critical. It has been awful – we have been through enough,” said Ms McCarthy.
There were numerous teddies placed at the grave by the two families, Skylar’s godmother and little cousins.
“Words cannot describe what we are going through and still going through, and will be for the rest of our lives.
“It was helping us every Saturday when we used to go down there, and then to realise that all her little teddies were gone...
“There wasn’t anything touched bar the teddies. It’s a sick joke,” said Ms McCarthy. She thinks it was teenagers who stole them.
Parish priest of Kilteely/Dromkeen, Fr Conor Hayes, says the whole community is shocked at the despicable act.
“I express my sympathy and apologise to her that that should happen. It is a burial ground that is kept so well. We have never had any trouble before,” said Fr Hayes, who asked locals to keep an eye on the cemetery in the village.
“It is out of character for the place. Those teddies are very important and I would appeal to who took them to rethink, that it was wrong what they did and return them,” added the parish priest.
A spokesperson for Bruff gardai said they are working on finding who is behind the theft.
“It is very upsetting for a couple who have buried their little baby and then to have teddy bears taken off the grave. An investigation is ongoing and we would ask anyone with any information to contact Pallasgreen gardai on 061 384102,” they said.
The Limerick Leader understands that in recent times youths have been congregating at night and drinking in Kilteely cemetery.