Volunteers arrived at the Saint Paul’s Lindsay Cemetery Monday morning, to find an empty shed with a broken lock morning after thieves stole the lawn maintenance equipment inside including a riding lawn mower, gas trimmer, and gas blower.

Patty Sinclair-Jenkins has helped maintain the lot since she was a kid and said she can’t believe someone would steal from a cemetery.

“It’s just heartbreaking,” Sinclair-Jenkins said. “We all come and donate our time to cut the grass and make it look good.”

Built in the 1880s, the cemetery is recognized as a provincial historic site, and was home to the third-oldest Anglican church in Saskatchewan.

Sinclair-Jenkins says the cemetery has no insurance or income to replace the equipment. She says the volunteers all have family buried in the lot but don’t live close enough to haul their own equipment there.

“People would stop and do a little touch up here and there and now that’s going to change.”

Sinclair-Jenkins says the RCMP are investigating but likely the group will have to fundraise to purchase new equipment. They are worried they will also need to replace the shed.

“If we replace the equipment and put it back in there it could happen again,” Sinclair-Jenkins told CTV News.

The volunteers have received some donations from community members already and offers to borrow equipment until they can replace their own.