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Mum has purse containing items reminding her of late daughter stolen in B&M Strood


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A grieving mother has made a desperate appeal for the return of her purse containing “invaluable memories” of her deceased daughter after it was stolen.

Naomi Taylor was in B&M in Strood when she put her blue Radley purse down before it disappeared.

Kayley Fothergill died aged 29 in October 2015. Picture: Naomi Taylor
Kayley Fothergill died aged 29 in October 2015. Picture: Naomi Taylor

It contained an angel which was gifted to the 56-year-old as a reminder of her daughter Kayley Fothergill, whose suicide aged 29 six years ago devastated the family.

Kayley’s old bank cards and other cherished items that Naomi had kept since her daughter’s death were also in the purse.

It disappeared at around 3.30pm on Saturday, May 15 in the B&M store at Strood Retail Park.

In 2015, Naomi discovered her daughter had taken her life in her room.

Her and her family moved out of their home to escape the memory of the tragedy.

Naomi visited her daughter's grave earlier on the same day her purse was stolen
Naomi visited her daughter's grave earlier on the same day her purse was stolen

The circumstances led the Northcote Road resident to begin a course of treatment for PTSD, depression and anxiety

Naomi, who volunteers for the Medway Street Angels, had a pacemaker fitted two-weeks-ago following years of heart problems.

The purse also contained her emergency medical information.

On May 15 – the day after what would’ve been Kayley’s 35th birthday – Naomi, her daughter and her granddaughter visited the store after they attended Kayley’s grave.

She said: “I can’t use a handbag because of my procedure and I had no pockets, so I had to carry my purse in my hand.

“I was so heartbroken and traumatised by it all.”

“I saw a beautiful butterfly which was so big and stunning. It was a solar powered one and butterflies always reminded me of my daughter.

“I put my purse down so I could pick the butterfly up, and within 10 seconds it was gone.

“All my life is in my purse. Kayley’s angel, a beautiful white feather I found on her grave, my pacemaker emergency medical ID card, bank cards, my driving licence, everything.

“Even my daughter's old bank card with her name on it, just little things that mean a lot to me.

“I was so heartbroken and traumatised by it all.”

Naomi Taylor in hospital two weeks ago when she had to have a pacemaker fitted
Naomi Taylor in hospital two weeks ago when she had to have a pacemaker fitted

Naomi, her family and staff members scoured the shop in search of the cherished possession, but to no avail.

Shop bosses checked CCTV footage but the footage was unclear.

Naomi described the Radley purse as dark blue and medium in size.

“I don’t care about the money,” she added. “So many caring people have commented on my Facebook appeal and shared my story. I thank these people so much.

“Since this has happened I was called back to a cardiology unit and my pacemaker has had to be turned up. It now helps 90% of my heart to beat.

“Yes, I was devastated over this, but nothing compares to losing my daughter.”

Police have been approached for more information.

Read more: All the latest news from Medway

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