Hamilton County police honor guard officer's stolen bagpipes returned

Posted at 5:30 PM, Dec 27, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-28 18:15:50-05

CINCINNATI -- A Hamilton County Police Association Honor Guard member celebrated the return of his "priceless" bagpipes Tuesday after they were stolen from his car Monday night.

“Our prayers have been answered,” he wrote on Facebook. “My bagpipes are back! An angel who lives in Delhi found them, and I have them back!"

Stephen Watt has "spread love" by playing the bagpipes at fellow police officers' funerals for more than 25 years. Just hours after he stood vigil for a fellow officer Monday night, Stephen Watt was walking out of the Playhouse in the Park in Mount Adams when he noticed that his car had been broken into. Two of the windows were broken.

He checked his trunk. His bagpipes were gone.

"Whoever broke into the car, when they saw the garment bag, it had 'Hamilton County Police Association' written on it, and my name, so they knew they were definitely dealing with the police," Watt said.

Watt was reunited with his pipes Tuesday night, when his Delhi Township 'angel,' a postal worker, brought them back to him. Cincinnati Fraternal Order of Police president Dan Hils said the theft of the pipes touched far more lives than Watt's own.

"It becomes personal, but it's not only personal for Steve -- it's personal for each and every family member who has ever been given an extra honor at their relative's passing when Steve Watt came," Hils said.

Watt wrote on Facebook that some of his other possessions were still missing, but his primary concern had been the pipes.