MUM'S HEARTACHE: Deanne Gillbee, pictured with daughter Ciarah, 9 and son Ryder, five months, is pleading for increased security at the Caloundra Cemetery after her son's grave was targeted by thieves for the second time.
MUM'S HEARTACHE: Deanne Gillbee, pictured with daughter Ciarah, 9 and son Ryder, five months, is pleading for increased security at the Caloundra Cemetery after her son's grave was targeted by thieves for the second time. Warren Lynam

'Have a heart': Mum's plea to baby son's graveside thieves

GRIEVING parents are calling for increased security at the Caloundra Cemetery after several children's graves were targeted in a spate of thefts over the weekend.

Deanne Gillbee was heartbroken after learning her son Tyler's grave was targeted for a second time, with thieves taking precious mementos from the site.

"The first time I was in Brisbane with his twin brother in the ICU ... I guess I didn't really have the strength to fight it back then," she said.

Tyler passed away five months ago after he and his twin brother, Ryder, were born at just 25 weeks.

It's the second time Tyler's grave has been targeted by thieves.
It's the second time Tyler's grave has been targeted by thieves. Warren Lynam

His family has since lovingly decorated his grave with special items to give him "the most beautiful resting spot".

"He deserves such a beautiful little resting place and to me that just lightens the whole place up," Ms Gillbee said.

She said the recent thefts had made visiting the cemetery even harder for several Caloundra families.

Should Coast cemeteries have increased security to prevent graveside thefts?

This poll ended on 23 May 2019.

Current Results

Yes, it would bring peace of mind to a lot of families.

64%

No, I think it would be inappropriate.

17%

I'm not sure.

17%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

"There's so many people that are getting hurt by things being taken," she said.

"Just to know that somebody is touching their belongings and taking them for their own, it's distressing.

"We've all got this disheartening feeling about it."

Ms Gillbee was heartbroken after the thieves stole precious mementos from her son, Tyler's grave.
Ms Gillbee was heartbroken after the thieves stole precious mementos from her son, Tyler's grave. Warren Lynam

She said it appeared there was a "pattern" in the thefts and suspected whoever was stealing the items was looking for something for their own children.

"Assumingly someone's got a nice little fairy garden in their backyard and are enjoying all our children's nice little things for themselves," she said.

A group of mourners have come together to keep each other informed and to campaign for increased security at the cemetery.

"We want our local Caloundra Cemetery equipped with video surveillance," grieving father Ben Strong said.

"Our babies and all the community should rest at ease. This is absolutely heart-breaking."

Ms Gillbee said security cameras could deter people from acting again, giving parents and other mourners peace of mind.

She has pleaded with the thieves to return the precious ornaments to the graves and allow her son to rest in peace.

"Please put his stuff back. Have a heart and don't do it again," she said.

The Daily has contacted Sunshine Coast Council for comment.



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