World War II vet’s ashes stolen during family move to Florida

SMYRNA, TN (WSMV) — An Army veteran on his way to a new home in Florida stopped in Smyrna, Tennessee for a night, only to lose an irreplaceable item.

Someone stole his father-in-law’s ashes from his truck.

Recently retired from the U.S. Army, Gordon Crawford never expected his road trip from New Mexico would end like this.

Crawford was traveling with his daughter and decided stopped for the night at a hotel in Tennessee. With the car parked under a street light toward the front of the hotel parking lot, he thought everything would be safe, but it wasn’t.

The next morning they discovered that he and his daughter’s belongings were stolen, including someone irreplaceable.

“Every piece of civilian clothing I owned, all of my military uniforms. Obviously, the thing of the most value, my father in law’s ashes were in there,” Crawford said.

Those ashes belong to World War II veteran Neil Cronin, who died 14 years ago.

“I’ve told everybody I’ve talked to. I just want the ashes back,” Crawford said. “They can keep everything else. That’s all replaceable stuff.”

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