ODESSA, TX (KWES) - Krystal Ramos and Yanine Muela have been visiting their grandfather at Rose Hill Cemetery since his passing nine months ago. They wanted to keep his resting place special.
"For anybody to steal anybody's stuff, he was always the man that said if you live right, your life will be good. If you live wrong, your life will be bad," said Ramos. "The memorial with the saddle was really in remembrance of him because he loved horses."
Flower arrangements and a saddle sat on his resting place in celebration of his birthday.
"The saddle itself symbolized a lot to us and to him because of his love of horses," said Ramos. "That's what he did."
When they came to visit their grandfather again, the saddle was gone.
"I was mad just the fact that its disrespecting him and disrespecting our family," said Muela.
They were worried that whoever stole it would sell it online.
"The symbol of it meant a lot to us," said Ramos. "To have it there on his tombstone."
They said the saddle and the arrangements totaled up to almost $400.
"So not only did we lose our money, we lost the saddle and our sentimental value."
Tombstone cleaner JJ Jimenez at Cemetery Stone Washing cleans gravestones every week. He said he has seen missing flowers from the sites but never sentimental belongings.
"I was upset when I saw that they stole a nice pretty saddle from one. Who knows what they're going to do with it?" said Jimenez. "They had to steal from a dead person. People come here, they spend a lot of time, sharing their loved ones here and bring gifts. Special gifts that they remember."
Ramos posted the image on Facebook. It had a large response from the community to help identify where it might be.
"If anybody sees them try to sell it, it's stolen. Don't buy it. It's not usable," said Ramos.
The family said the saddle's foot straps were cut out so nobody is able to use it. She hopes the person responsible will return it where it belongs.
"To the person who took it, have a heart. Bring it back. You can't use it. I hope nobody would buy it knowing it was stolen."
The family said they have not filed a police report but they will.