independent

Sunday 20 October 2019

Bag stolen as mother visited Nicola's grave

Angie Furlong
Angie Furlong

Maria Pepper

The heartbroken mother of murdered Curracloe student Nicola Furlong had her handbag robbed while she visited her daughter's grave.

The bag, which contained a precious hand-written diary of Angie Furlong's feelings in the weeks following 21-year-old Nicola's death, was stolen from her car in Curracloe cemetery on Sunday afternoon.

Angie stored the notes in a pocket of the handbag which also contained angel brooches given to her by Nicola before she died, as well as bank cards and a small amount of cash.

Making an emotional plea for the return of the notes, Angie said she didn't care about the cash or cards.

'Those notes are my most intimate thoughts and memories of Nicola,' she said.

She appealed to the person responsible to 'show a bit of compassion' and return them to her: 'When I started receiving counselling after Nicola died, I was advised to write down my most intimate thoughts and memories of her and how I felt.'

'There were about 20 A4 sheets with my handwriting on them. To anyone else it would just look like scribbles.

'They can't be replaced, I can't go back on how I was feeling then. That can't be re-created,' said Angie. Pleading for their return, she said :'They don't have to go to the Garda station. All they have to do is leave them on Nicola's grave.

Angie visits her daughter's grave every day and arrived at the cemetery adjacent to Curracloe Church with a friend at about 2.30 p.m. on Sunday.

She parked her car about 50 yards away from Nicola's grave and spent about 45 minutes in the cemetery.

'There was no one else there when we arrived and we saw nothing suspicious.'

'We were there for a while, pottering around, replacing water in flower vases.'

It was only when she drove home that she realised the handbag was missing.

Angie returned to the graveyard with the friend to search for the bag, which she bought in Tokyo while attending the trial earlier this year of Nicola's killer Richard Hinds, who was sentenced to five to 10 years in prison for the murder of the Curracloe girl in May 2012.

'I was hoping they had taken the cash and thrown the bag away,' she said.

'We searched everywhere, in the ditches and all around the church but it was nowhere to be found.'

She warned other people to be vigilant and to lock their cars when visiting cemeteries.

'It's unbelievable that anyone would prey on vulnerable people in a graveyard. It's shocking,' she said.

The theft is being investigated by Wexford gardaí.

Wexford People

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