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A father rejoices as his Marine son's possessions are returned

Updated: Wednesday, February 13 2013, 10:52 PM EST
A father rejoices as his Marine son
ALLEGAN COUNTY, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) – A father of a local Marine has gotten his son’s stolen items returned to him after they were found during another criminal investigation.

Greg Courtney died in a car crash in September of 2011. Then on November 15th, 2012 his family lost precious memories of the Marine to thieves after someone broke into his father’s house and stole a camera, camcorder tapes and a Marine sign.

Those items were returned on Tuesday.

Joe Courtney was all smiles on Wednesday, telling Newschannel 3 that he’s not mad at the people who broke into his house and stole his son’s stuff, priceless memories he thought he would never get back.

Investigators called it one of the worst crash scenes they had ever responded to. It was September of 2011, an early morning on M-40 near Gobles. A young Marine, 22-year-old Greg Courtney was killed after police say he lost control of his car, which broke apart as he was thrown from his seat.

“He says I got a tape here, it says Courtney reunion on it, and right then I start bawling like a baby,” said Joe Courtney.

Courtney is overjoyed now, but it wasn’t always that way. Nearly a year after his son’s death his house was broken into.

“They came in the middle window of the three right there,” said Courtney to Newschannel 3 when we first reported on the theft.

At that time Courtney told Newschannel 3 how he was forced to go through another great loss. That loss included a camera with hundreds of photos and home videos belonging to his son, cherished items that were simply gone, thankfully returned on Tuesday by Allegan County Sheriff’s deputies.

“Just made me feel so good, I got them,” said Courtney. “The tapes will be locked away now, very important, just one of the best things to happen, after so much time, just didn’t think it was going to come through.”

Now the father has memories to hold onto, but he says he is letting go of his anger at those who took them.

“Well they are definitely forgiven, yes,” said Courtney. “I wish they had the sense to walk up and do it themselves instead of getting arrested on other stuff.”

Allegan County officials tell Newschannel 3 that no one has been arrested yet, but they do have suspects and the investigation is ongoing.

A father rejoices as his Marine son's possessions are returned
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