Thieves broke into the home of a grandmother while she was recovering from an operation and stole a precious gold chain – the last gift given to her by her late husband.
Devastated Lillian Horton today made an emotional plea for the gold chain and a locket containing a photograph of the couple.
The sentimental jewellery was taken from Mrs Horton’s Coseley home while she was in hospital being treated after a fall. The 71-year-old was married to her husband Ray for 43 years before he died suddenly of heart failure in 2005.
She said: “The gold chain was the last present Ray gave to me before he died and holds such sentimental value.
“It breaks my heart to think that someone burgled my house to steal it.
“My children know how special the chain is to me.
“After Ray died they bought me a locket which contained a picture of Ray and me.
“They even had it engraved with the words ‘forever in my heart’.
“I have worn that locket and chain every day since and the only reason I had taken it off was because I had fallen and broken an arm and had to go into hospital for treatment.”
The mother of three and grandmother of eight said her husband was a “much loved, larger than life character” and she said everyone knew him in the area.
She added: “Ray always used sit on the wall outside our house with his dog and four cans of beer, after a hard day working as a painter and decorator. Everyone knew him as the man with the dog.
“All I want is for the jewellery to be returned as it means so much to me.”
Along with the necklace thieves stole a gold ring inset with a sapphire, surrounded by diamonds.
They also took bank books and cash.
Police believe the burglary happened sometime between about 9am and 1pm on Tuesday.