Derry man, Micky Doherty, said he almost had a “heart attack” when he heard vandals had attacked his parents’ grave in the City Cemetery at the weekend.
Micky, a local entertainer, lost both parents within a period of four weeks in 2014.
“I got a phone call at the weekend from the funeral directors saying my mammy and daddy’s grave had been attacked.
“I was distraught, I couldn’t speak, I thought I was going to have a heart attack,” said Micky.
The vandals dislodged a statue, which cost £2,000 and was designed by Micky, from the grave and smashed glass at the foot of the headstone.
“I know it wasn’t a personal attack because there were other graves attacked too but it’s still awful.
“My sisters and I visit mammy and daddy’s grave every single day - it’s their home, it’s their resting place - it’s horrible.”
Micky added: “I am coping much better now than I was at the weekend. There are people much worse off than me. All you have to do is look at what happened that little boy Ronan McGavigan at the weekend - my heart goes out to the family.”
The incident was unanimously condemned by local politicians.
“The scenes of destruction are appalling, and I will continue my work with council officials to ensure that this site is protected from this vandalism. There will be an immediate step up in security, while we find a long term solution to this issue. I would encourage anyone with any information about these vicious attacks to contact the police,” said SDLP Councillor, Brian Tierney.
Sinn Fein Colr. Kevin Campbell said: “There is a mounting catalogue of vandalism incidents of graves in the City Cemetery over the past year and that’s not including the burning of a car in the grounds.
“I would once again appeal for these senseless actions to stop and if anyone knows the culprits to contact the PSNI.”