A GRIEVING daughter today branded thieves “the lowest of the low” after they broke into her father’s flat just days after he died.
Heartless crooks smashed their way into Edward Loughran’s home and took cash he had saved for his grandson’s Christmas present.
Mr Loughran, 63, was found dead at his flat off Hawes Side Lane, Marton, last Saturday.
Four days later, the flat was broken into and a number of sentimental items, including jewellery and a camera which contained photos of his family were stolen.
The thieves also stole the £200 cash he had been due to send his grandson Connor, six, for Christmas.
Mr Loughran’s daughter Michelle Duffy, who lives in Belfast, told The Gazette: “I’m devastated, shocked, angry and hurt that someone could to do this just hours after a man’s death. It’s despicable – they’re the lowest of the low and I hope they get what they deserve.”
Mr Loughran, who worked at a resort club, had been suffering from diabetes and had lost his leg to the illness.
Mrs Duffy, 33, said she knew something was wrong when she did not hear from her father for a couple of days.
She said: “The last thing dad said to me was he was sending money over for Connor’s Christmas present. When we didn’t hear from him and couldn’t get in touch I phoned Blackpool Coastal Housing and social services went round to his flat.
“They phoned me later to say my dad had died. I was devastated but held myself together to come over to Blackpool to sort out his things.
“When I arrived the coroner told me he had even more bad news and told me my dad’s house had been burgled. It was a double whammy.
“I’m hurt the money he wanted Connor to have has been taken but it’s only cash – what breaks my heart is the jewellery.”
The jewellery is a chunky, gold, curb-link necklace, a gold sovereign ring, a man’s chunky, gold bracelet and a gent’s watch.
A Kodak digital camera, which contained photographs of Mr Loughran’s last trip to Belfast, an LG TV and a mobile phone were also taken.
Mrs Duffy added: “He had only recently bought the camera so he could take photos of himself with us all.
“Now we will never see those pictures again, they’re lost forever. I just hope someone out there has a conscience and returns the memory card at least.
“The phone would have had numbers for his friends over here. I hoped to speak to them and tell them what had happened but there is no way I can do that now.”
Police believe the stolen items may have been sold on.
PC Kirsty Jones said: “We want to do all we can to return these items to Mr Loughran’s family.”
Three men – aged 16, 21 and 22 – from Blackpool were arrested on suspicion of burglary. They were all released on bail pending further inquiries.
Anybody with information can call Blackpool Police on 08451 253545 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.