Generous mystery donor replaces gravestone cash
An anonymous philanthropist has paid for a new gravestone for a family whose savings were stolen by a burglar.
The generous individual does not want to be named, but was so touched by the article in last week’s paper he said he would give the Shields family the £1,500 they had stolen from their home in St Helier Avenue.
A thief broke into the house last week and stole the jar full of money, which the whole family been chipping into to pay for Mary Shields’ headstone after she lost her battle with cancer two years ago. The family had only recently taken the money out of the bank and were due to buy the headstone this week.
But they were left devastated when the hooded thief made off with their hard earned savings.
On the day the newspaper came out, a friend of Mary Shields’ daughter, Kerry, set up a group on Facebook to help raise money to help the family out.
Hannah Carter set up the group on June 28 and contacted some businessmen and friends to start the appeal. However, before the night was out, one man said he would pay for the whole thing. Miss Carter said: “I read the story and just wanted to help Kerry. It was shocking what happened. I rang around some contacts and one man said he would pay the whole thing. It was wonderful news.”
Brian Shields was overwhelmed when he got the news.
He said: “He has a heart of gold that man. It is unbelievable news.
“He told me he had lost his mother and how the story had hit home. I still cannot believe somebody could be so generous. We are all so grateful.
“I would like to thank everyone for the amazing response.”
The money raised from the Facebook campaign will go to a charity of Kerry’s choice.