A MYSTERY disappearance from a Harefield churchyard has left a widow devastated.
A memorial tablet to Melvyn Savage – known as Mel and who died of cancer aged 67 on Boxing Day 2009 – has gone missing from the garden of remembrance at St Mary’s church in Church Hill.
Mel’s widow, Alexis Mack, 55, had travelled from Norfolk where she now lives on March 20 to lay flowers at her mother’s plaque, which is also in the churchyard, to mark the 15th anniversary of her death.
It was then she noticed Mel’s plaque was not there.
“I was so upset, that was his spot,” she said.
“There’s just no reason for it. We lived in the village since 1997 and we had no enemies,” said Mrs Mack, who left Harefield in 2010.
“I’m at a complete loss as to why anybody would do this. It’s tantamount to desecrating a grave.
“It is the only place our family can come to remember Mel so to find it gone when I’d come to lay flowers for him and my mum was horrendous.”
After a fruitless search of the grounds the disappearance was reported to police.
“The policeman said he’d never dealt with such a thing and he didn’t know what would possess someone to do this,” said Mrs Mack.
“But they won’t be able to do anything because we don’t know when it happened.”
Mel has a daughter Tracy, 39, from a previous relationship, and was ‘like a father’ to Mrs Mack’s daughter, Michelle, also 39. “I’m just glad I discovered it and not the girls. They would have been inconsolable,” said Mrs Mack.
“Whoever has it, please put it back. We just want him to rest in peace.”
The vicar of St Mary’s, the Rev Martin Davies said: “This is a highly unusual thing to happen. It’s very strange, a complete mystery. It’s very distressing for Mel’s family.”
The 10in sq limestone tablet was clearly inscribed with the words: ‘Mel Savage (The Fox). Loved, Remembered, Always 13/11/1942 - 26/12/2009’.
Anyone with information regarding the plaque should contact the St Mary’s parish office on 01895 825960 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.