Theft of a family?s treasures
By DAWN COHEN
THIEVES stole thousands of dollars, Gallipoli medals and six lollipops from Wardell couple Kevin and Shirley Geaghan.
The couple returned from dinner at the Wardell Sport and Recreation Club about 9.30pm on Friday to find their safe, containing jewellery, cash and a lifetime of treasured memorabilia, was gone.
A digital camera and computer in full view were not touched, but six lollipops were stolen.
A Star of Gallipoli medal and a Gallipoli legion badge awarded to Mr Geaghan's uncle, Clarrie Howell, were in the safe.
"They were the only things I had of him," said a shaken Mr Geaghan.
"I got very close to him when my dad was away."
The thieves are believed to have come in through an unlocked bedroom door before hauling the heavy safe down stairs.
The couple left Ballina earlier this year after a lifetime of service, Mr Geaghan as a funeral director and former Balllina Citizen of the Year, and Mrs Geaghan as a florist.
They moved to Wardell, hoping for a stress-free lifestyle.
"We were going to buy a new fridge to replace the rusty one," said Mrs Geaghan.
"We had ordered two recliner chairs. Now we can't get them. The money was to make retire- ment a little bit easier.
"We will manage financially, but the sentimental value is irreplaceable."
Mr Geaghan believes the lollipops indicate the thieves were youths.
"When it happens, you ask why," he said.
The couple say there have been two other burglaries in Wardell in the past two weeks.
They are offering a reward for recovered items.
Phone 6683 4406 if you have any information.