'We never loved you': Family distraught after vandals target a young cancer victim's grave leaving an offensive note

A Teesside family have been left devastated after vandals damaged their daughter's grave.

Surrounded by her husband and family, Leanne Knight from Grangetown passed away from mouth cancer in February this year.

On 26 March, the 33-year-old's family laid her to rest at Eston cemetery.

Less than a month later, Leanne's grave has been trashed in what is believed to have been a targeted attack.

Lights and flowers which adorned Leanne's final resting place have been broken, and a photo of the young mother defaced. Perhaps more devastating than that, is that a note left at the graveside by Leanne's mother Jackie has been scribbled over and ruined.

The heartfelt message from Jackie read:

Beautiful forever in my heart, love Mam

Jackie Chesworth, Leanne's mother

Vandals have defaced the note adding 'We never loved u' to the heartfelt message.

The heartfelt message from Leanne's mother has been defaced. Credit: Gazette Media Syndication

Leanne's mother Jackie visits the grave daily.

Leanne's sister Lisa says they were devastated when they discovered the damage done to their loved one's resting place.

Lisa said her mother fell to her knees in disbelief and is now frightened to leave the graveside.

It's already destroyed her losing Leanne, now she doesn't want to leave her there alone, she's frightened it's going to happen again.

Lisa Chesworth, Leanne's sister

The family received a call to inform them that someone had damaged the part of the cemetery where Leanne's grave is.

Lisa said it has devastated the family:

"I’m sat at home and I get a phone call to say my beautiful sister's grave has been absolutely trashed, and a note left on her photo saying we never loved you - how disgusting."For me having to tell my Mam that my sister's grave has been savagely smashed up and for her breakdown on her grave wondering if this is going to happen every time.

My poor Mam is in pieces.

Lisa Chesworth, Leanne's sister

Lisa added that they believe it was a targeted attack because no other graves in the cemetery have been vandalised.

Cleveland Police say they are looking into the the criminal damage:

"We received a report of criminal damage on Thursday April 22 at around 5pm. Enquiries are ongoing. Anyone who witnessed anything is asked to contact us on 101 quoting 063774."

Leanne was diagnosed with mouth cancer at 30. She had surgery to remove half of her tongue, Credit: Gazette Media Syndication

The local community followed Leanne's journey with mouth cancer. Diagnosed at the age of 30, the mother of two had part of her tongue removed in surgery before going on to have chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

Leanne had been set to marry her partner Jamie Knight in June last year but the coupe were forced to cancel. They rescheduled for December 2020 and tied the knot at Teesside Hospice.