The wife and son of a man whose cremated remains were stolen from a California church are appealing to the thief to return the ashes, but they are trying to be philosophical about the loss.
Marvin Kent Hockabout, 74, of Alameda, died Jan. 21 after an extended illness. The funeral was scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday.
His wife of 44 years, Eleonore Hockabout, and other family members and friends were gathering for the service at Christ Episcopal Church in Alameda when they realized a backpack containing his ashes had disappeared.
"One minute you're ready to start a memorial service," said son Sean Hockabout, 43, of Elkins Park, Pa., "and the next minute rector's saying, 'Where is he?'"The backpack, which also contained Hockabout's diplomatic passport, a relic of his work as a State Department courier, was on a table in front of the church's altar, along with a portrait of him.
Eleonore Hockabout says she put the remains in the green, microfiber Rick Steves backpack her husband had gotten as a thank-you gift for donating to radio station KQED because she knew how much he liked it. She added that he had wanted to travel, though Parkinson's and dementia had kept him grounded for several years.
"He loved the backpack," Eleonore said. "That's why I chose it for him to make his last journey in, with his passport too."
via Marvin Kent Hockabout's Ashes Stolen From His Funeral in California.
I know the economy is bad, but that backpack is haunted and you should return it quickly.