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Local Cemetery Hit by Thieves

CEDAR RAPIDS (CBS 2/ FOX 28)-- Every few weeks, Roxanne Augustine visits her family at the Murdoch Linwood Cemetery.

"This is my mom and my dad, and this is my sister Cindy and this is my sister Jackie," Augustine said pointing to the graves in her familys plot.

Sometimes she brings flowers or just stops by to say "hello."

"I come out here, and I talk to my family, because this is all I have," Augustine said, the last survivor of her family.

But on her last trip, her grief turned into anger.

"I looked up, and I saw that the flowers were not in the vase, she said. There was nothing standing up."

All the bronze vases on her family's plot were gone.

"It breaks my heart," Augustine said.

During the summer, at least 16 vases have been stolen from the cemetery.

"It's a classless act," said Eric Londquist, cemetery manager.

Londquist says the robberies boil down to the value of bronze inside each one.

"Retail value of something like that would be $375," he said.

So far police haven't made any arrests.

"We would love to catch these people not for us but for our families," Lonquist said.

And in the meantime, the cemetery is offering families these replacement metal vases.

A small comfort says Roxanne.

"It's just so disrespectful, she said. That's all it is--disrespectful."


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