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Thieves Steal Musicians Horn Collection

Updated: Tuesday, November 12 2013, 10:56 PM EST
SPRINGFIELD TOWNSHIP, Ohio (Rich Jaffe) -- Breakins are bad enough; people invading your home and taking your personal possessions.

But this one was even worse when they took not only a musicians livelihood but instruments he's collected over the last 20 years!

The Springfield Township break-in happened Friday night while the musician, Brian Buerkle was out of town.

Local 12 heard about it over Facebook, and Tuesday Buerkle sat down with Rich Jaffe to talk about this devastating theft.

This is the kind of stage where Brian Buerkle is comfortable.  Not in the spotlight as a victim of crime.

He moved onto that other stage hoping that as we get the word out about what happened, it might help him get his treasured horns back.

In Brian Buerkle's hands a trumpet is much more than just an instrument.  It's a treasured old friend that transforms his passion and skill into a thing of auditory beauty.  That's why when he walked into his home Sunday evening to find it had been ransacked he was devastated.

Buerkle says, "These instruments, they're not just pieces of metal a dollar amount. It's what I use to express myself and to have them just taken after years and years of searching to find the perfect instruments to do what I need to do as a professional musician I can't tell you how hurt I was."

While Buerkle was in Grand Rapids playing with the symphony Friday evening, thieves broke in through a side door and trashed the place.  Stealing everything from a tv set, to his clothes, even Nike socks.  But worst of all they stole cases containing 14 vintage trumpets and coronets.

Local 12 talked Tuesday as he cradled one of his remaining Bach Stradavarious trumpets.

He explained, "For me to find this it took 15 years.  So, once you get something like this you don't get rid of it."

The break-in was discovered Saturday morning by Brian's dad. The decision was made not to tell Brian until after his concerts.  His dad told Rich Jaffe about it with tears in his eyes.

Bob Buerkle said, "And we talked to friends about it. Talked to police about it and they thought there wasn't anything he could do about it anyway. We also didn't want him to drive back recklessly back and be under that duress, so we decided to wait and I met him at his house when he got back."

Insured yes, replaceable...probably not.

Brian says, "It takes time to learn the instrument and communicate with it eventually you capture it's voice, it captures your voice and you work kind of as one."

These horns are worth thousands of dollars but worth a lot more to Brian and his family.  Police of course have put area pawn shops on alert, and people are watching other sites like Craigslist for these very unusual instruments. 

In a perfect world, the thief will have a heart and carefully put them all in a pile somewhere and call someone.

At Music Hall, Rich Jaffe Local 12 News.

Anyone with information about this break-in is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers at 352-3040 and hopefully help Brian get his instruments back.

Watch video HEREThieves Steal Musicians Horn Collection

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