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Update: Stolen ashes returned to widow

December 18, 2013
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ELK GROVE, CA — A man, who had his car stolen which contained his wife's ashes, got some good news yesterday when police were able to catch the thief and locate his car, azcentral.com reported.

The Dec. 17 story said police took two people into custody for allegedly stealing the man's car after it came out of a carwash tunnel. The urn was still in the backseat.

As PC&D previously reported, 80-year-old Melvin Hayes, was transporting his wife's ashes to his priest so that they could be blessed.  While at the carwash, a woman asked him for some change so she could buy a soda. "And I said I don't have any single bills, but I got a pocket full of change," Hayes explained. "And I gave her enough money to buy the soda pop."

Hayes said he believes she was talking to him so that others would assume they were together. The woman somehow managed to get his claim ticket while the car was on the conveyor.

General Manager Victor Vosburgh of Premier Car Wash said in the story, "She ended up with his ticket and went out front, and my inspector asked for the ticket, got a ticket that was the car, the license number, and he released the keys to her."

Hayes said he didn't care about the car, but wanted to be able to properly honor his late wife. "Nothing else matters," he said in the previous story. "I just want to get my wife's ashes back."