Cremated Remains Taken in Grand Traverse Co. Break-In

It’s a mystery for a Traverse City family, with a happy ending. A Navy veteran’s ashes were stolen from a car in Peninsula Township. But now those ashes have been found, more than 100 miles from home.

The Grand Traverse County Sheriff’s Office says sometime Saturday night or early Sunday morning, someone went into an unlocked car in a neighborhood near Central High School. That thief took more than $2,000 in camera equipment, and two white boxes – containing the cremated remains of a Navy veteran.

Sheriff’s Captain Randy Fewless says with the ashes in boxes, the thief may not have realized what they took. “If this was done during the nighttime, the ashes were contained in a couple of white boxes that said Reynolds-Jonkhoff Funeral Home on them, but we don’t know if the person who took them actually knew what the writing was.” The remains are that of Stephen Vincent Perez.

On Tuesday afternoon, the remains turned up in Greenville, about 130 miles away. The camera equipment is still missing, and police say they have no suspects.