Minnesota family asking for help in returning ashes after car stolen in Wichita

Published: Aug. 30, 2020 at 7:01 PM CDT
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WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - A family in Minnesota is asking for your help to bring their grandma home.

81-year-old Thomas LeCuyer was driving from his home in Arizona, to Minnesota, with his wife’s ashes to bury her in her home state. He stayed in a hotel in Wichita last Saturday to take a break from driving and woke up to the devastating realization his car had been stolen.

“He went to grab the few items inside the hotel room with him, he took his dog to pack up the vehicle and finish the trip to Minnesota, and the vehicle was gone,” said his granddaughter, Samantha LeCuyer.

LeCuyer’s wife died in April, but COVID-19 complications caused a delay in her funeral. She wanted to be buried with her family in Minnesota. Two weeks ago, LeCuyer was finally able to leave Arizona and drive to Minnesota to lay his wife to rest.

“When grandpa finally had the chance and he had grandma’s ashes, he planned a trip to drive up to Minnesota to spread grandma’s ashes with all of their children so the family could be together to lay her to rest,” said Samantha.

The family said LeCuyer was staying at the Motel 6 off east Kellogg. He was driving a 2016 white Dodge Caravan with an Arizona license plate.

“He’s devastated because grandma’s ashes were in the car, he had the box with all of the paperwork for the cemetery she’s supposed to go to,” said Samantha. “Her death certificate was in there, grandma is irreplaceable.”

Along with the ashes in the car, was the money to pay for the funeral.

“Every month he was making large withdrawals to pay for this,” said Samantha. “There was an envelope of cash with $28,000 to pay for the funeral, it’s gone.”

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The family said at this point they don’t want to get anyone in trouble, they just want anyone who knows any information to come forward.

“We’re not asking for someone to say ’yeah, I have your vehicle,” said Samantha. “We just want grandma returned; it can be done anonymously.”

If you have any information, report it to Wichita Police.

The family also has a GoFundMe to help with expenses, click here to donate.

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