A bell dedicated to the children who lost their lives in the Sandy Hook Elementary massacre was stolen from an Island Park playground during the weekend. The brass bell, which was located on Masone Beach on Waterford road, was 8-inches by 8-inches. Nassau County police are saying it was stolen between 9 p.m Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday. The bell and playground are one of 26 that have been set up in the region. Each one pays homage to an individual child.
“We had the ceremony Saturday. The parents were there and there was hundreds of people and it was a tearful thing,” Village trustee Henry Hastava told CBS news.
The bell was inscribed with the number 26, and a quote from “It’s a Wonderful Life,” Every time a bell rings, an angel gets its wings.” The playground the bell was stolen from honored 6-year-old Caroline Previdi.
“This was the 10th playground. It was in honor of Caroline Previdi who loved the color pink and the New York Yankees,” Bill Lavin, founder of the Sandy Ground Project, told CBS. “So there’s much more to celebrate, and I just hope that this particular incident doesn’t tarnish that beautiful project in any way.”
Lavin believes the perpetrator took the bell without knowing the meaning behind it.
“It’s unfortunate. The way the project has been, it’s been blessed from the very beginning,” he said. “So all I could think of is whoever took the bell must have needed it more than they did on the playground, but I think if they knew the significance of it, they certainly would have left it alone.”
Residents and officials want the bell returned with no questions asked. Anyone with information on the stolen bell was asked to call Nassau County Crime Stoppers at (800) 244-TIPS. All callers will remain anonymous, police said.