GREENVILLE COUNTY, S.C. – A hole in the wall shows where the front door was kicked in. The TV, gaming console and other electronics are gone.
Ashley Gayle says they immediately called police and filed a report.
Then she remembered her jewelry box.
“Something just told me to check and see because I wouldn’t think that something so valuable would be gone,” said Gayle.
But it was gone: A small urn containing her infant daughter’s ashes.
“It was four years ago. She was a stillborn and I had her ashes for that long,” said Gayle through tears. “And it’s the only thing besides this box, it’s the only thing that i had.”
The ashes are of Aniyah Marie Furgeson, born August 25th, 2010.
“This is her blanket. I never washed it. I just kept it,” said Gayle.
She has a keepsake box the hospital gave her, dedicated to Aniyah. The birth certificate, pictures and tiny bracelet in her name reveal the heartbreaking experience.
Gayle says losing the ashes is like losing her daughter all over again.
“I feel like I just had the funeral yesterday,” said Gayle. “I feel like I just picked up the ashes.”
Gayle thinks the burglar mistook the urn for drugs or something else valuable. In all, she’s out hundreds of dollars from the stolen goods.
Gayle says it’s a small price compared to what she really lost.
“I just want the ashes. I don’t care about anything else, that’s all I want. They don’t even have to give their name. I don’t care. I just want the ashes back,” said Gayle.
She doesn’t think the burglary was random. She says it happened last Thursday, January 29th at her home in Piedmont.
The Greenville County Sheriff’s Office tells us they’re still investigating. If you have any information on the incident or her daughter’s ashes, call cCrimestoppersat 23-CRIME. You can remain anonymous.