Widow's tearful reunion with late husband's stolen war medals

 

The widow of a war veteran has broken down in tears while describing her happiness after her late husband's war medals were returned to her.

Sue Summers said she thought she would never see the medals again after they were stolen from her home three months ago.

They belonged to her late husband William and they held treasured memories of him.

“Because of all the stories my husband told us, it relates everything to the medals,” Mrs Summers told 7 News.

Sue Summers was moved to tears when she heard the medals had been found. Photo: 7 News


William served in Borneo during World War II and was awarded the Pacific Star, an Australian Service Medal and War Medal.

In October, Mrs Summers’ home was targeted in a break-and-enter, leaving her family devastated.

William’s daughter Ann Smith said the medals were a treasured reminder of her dad.

“Because we don't have dad any more it filled that void,” she said.

Pleas for their return were finally answered earlier this month with a parcel left anonymously at Penrith police station.

Chief Inspector Tracy Stone said the items were in a poor condition when they arrived.

Mrs Summers' husband William served in Borneo in World War II. Photo: 7 News

“We discovered the war medals were actually in disrepair and were not fitting to be returned to this owner,” Chief Insp Stone told 7 News.

With the help of local businesses, they had the medals restored before ringing Mrs Summers with the good news.

“I couldn't believe it, I burst out crying,” Mrs Summers said.

For Chief Insp Stone, the happy reunion made the hard work worthwhile.

“It makes me feel fantastic,” she said. “It is exactly why I do my job.”

William’s daughter said it was a miracle the medals were returned.

“To the person that did return these for whatever reason, we are so very grateful. It kind of restores our faith in humanity,” she said.

NSW Police had the medals restored before returning them to Mrs Summers. Photo: 7 News


Mrs Summers was so happy with the outcome that she said she forgives the thieves.

But authorities said they aren't ready to forget.

The medals were dusted for fingerprints and police are now looking to speak to the person who handed in the medals.

Anyone with information is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page.

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