Dwight Blackwood was on his way home to St. John's from a Christmas vacation last week, when his daughter called to tell him his home had been broken into.
A safe was stolen, which contained various documents including wills, family jewelry and heirlooms, but also a small urn containing some of Blackwood's son's ashes.
"A home invasion in itself is bad enough, but when you realize that my son's things were gone and I might never ever see those again, that was devastating to all of us," said an emotional Blackwood.
"I would not lose one molecule of his ashes — not one — and now some idiot, some thief, some low life has taken that from me. I hope in some point at time that I'll get it back."
Blackwood's son was 22 when he took his own life six years ago, and Blackwood made the decision to have him cremated.
"A lot of family members wanted me to bury him … and I just couldn't stand the thought of that, so I said, 'No, until I die, he's going to stay here in my home with me,'" he said.
According to Blackwood, a number of smaller urns with some ashes had been done up as keepsakes for various family members, instead of one large one. The one stolen belonged to his wife.
'Worth the world to us'
A friend of Blackwood's posted on a Facebook group called Salmon and Trout Fishing in Newfoundland and Labrador, in an attempt to spread the word of the theft on social media.
At the time of publication, the post had been shared more than 8,000 times.
Blackwood said that his son had been an avid fisher; since his son's death, Blackwood has taken one of the urns containing his son's ashes on hunting and fishing various hunting and fishing expeditions with him ever since.
Blackwood said while the documents and various family jewelry items stolen can't be replaced, he just wants his son's ashes back.
"That little urn contains a part of my son, and it's worth absolutely nothing to anybody else but it's worth the world to us, and I want to have that back."
According to Blackwood, his son had been well-loved by everyone in the family. But his son was suffering, and fighting a battle he knew nothing about.
"That was the most traumatic and devastating experience that I've ever endured. It's not something that a parent wants to endure — I mean, you're supposed to be gone before your children," said Blackwood.
"He was my youngest child, and it's something that we've never gotten over and never will get over. It's something that you think about every day, but time goes on and I have other children and I've got six grandchildren that I have to stay strong for."
Blackwood said the other items contained in the safe hold value for him and his family, but they'd be happy just to get his son's ashes and other items back.
"There's got to be somebody somewhere out there that knows where my safe is. I don't care about the safe or its contents, other than my son's belongings. If they can find a way of getting that back to me … I'd be so, so happy, as would all my family."
Police are continuing their investigation into the break in.