ALTAMONTE SPRINGS, Fla. - An Altamonte Springs widow said a thief stole the ashes of her late husband.
Patricia Picquet said someone broke into her home on Lake Avenue last month and stole several items, including the box containing the ashes of her late husband, Richard Picquet.
Patricia and Richard had just celebrated 43 years of marriage before he died of lung cancer.
"I said good morning, gave him a kiss and said happy anniversary and he raised his hand and grabbed mine and smiled. That was the last response we had and he passed away the next morning,” she said. “I miss his laughter. I miss him whistling coming up the driveway.”
Lung cancer took Richard but Patricia could not say goodbye for good, so she cremated the love of her life and put his ashes in this box on her dresser.
"Somehow, that made me feel safe. When I would get up in the morning I would come over and kiss the box and say good morning,” Patricia said.
A few weeks ago she walked into her bedroom and Richard’s ashes were gone.
Seminole County deputies said the burglars may have thought the box was full of jewelry.
Saying goodbye the first time was hard enough, but now this Valentine’s Day, Patricia is only left with Richard's pictures and their memories.
"I am trying to accept what has happened and just hope they have some compassion and caring enough to try to get it back," she said.
Patricia says the burglars also took a revolver, a radio, and a pellet gun.
Patricia said the wooden box containing the ashes has a sailfish etched on the lid.
She is hoping to have the box and her husband's ashes returned to her.