A pair of young boys who desecrated dozens of headstones at a South Australia graveyard have received a valuable life lesson, courtesy of their distraught mother.
The children, two brothers aged 10 and 11, damaged 46 graves last week at Berri Cemetery - an act that left a number of families devastated and searching for answers.
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Upon discovering that it was her own two sons responsible, their mother immediately turned them in to police and took them to meet the councillor who deals with graveyards, Dave Otto De Grancy.
Their meeting was at the very graveyard in which they'd caused so much damage, and Mr Otto De Grancy told The Adelaide Advertiser it didn't take long for them to be overcome by the severity of their actions.
"After a while, the lads really broke down and I drummed into them how much they'd hurt their mum and nana, and they gave them a kiss and cuddle and apologised," he said.
"Then we went through the whole cemetery and apologised to some of the graves they damaged; by the end, one of the little boys said 'I just wish I could take all this back and say sorry to all the people'.
"That's when I knew they were not bad kids."
Mr Otto De Grancy says the duo are now hand-weeding the entire ceremony as an apology, but added that many of the affected families are not in a financial position to repair the damaged graves.
But despite that, he knows they're truly sorry - and he lauded their mother for going out of her way to teach such a valuable lesson.
"Behind all this they are just sweet kids, I think," he told The Adelaide Advertiser.
"They certainly didn't realise how much trouble they were causing, so hopefully some good has come out of this."