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Police Report Additional Items Stolen From Armstrong Museum

01 August 2017

Gutheinz said it would be a "damn shame" if the replica was melted down, and it would also make finding the thieves very hard. One of its more unusual exhibits was a solid gold replica of the Lunar Excursion Module, the lander that carried Armstrong to the moon's surface in 1969.

Wapakoneta police are reporting the theft of additional items from the Armstrong Air and Space Museum.

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Cartier Paris was commissioned by Le Figaro newspaper to make the three replicas, as readers financed the project through a subscription drive, according to Cartier's website. The stolen artifacts were among 25 objects in an exhibit that showcased Armstrong's world tour that he and fellow Apollo 11 astronauts - Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins - took after returning from their Apollo 11 mission.

After an alarm tripped at the museum, security arrived to discover one display case empty, and it just happened to be the one containing the solid gold model.

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"The truth is that you can't steal from a museum. Museum's don't "own" artifacts", the museum posted on its Facebook page.

It should also be noted that the items from the exhibit were not centrally featured at the museum. Friday's theft was the first for the museum in Executive Director Chris Burton's seven-plus years there. Three hundred people driving from across the country were robbed of their opportunity to experience the museum today.

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"Theft from a museum is a theft from all of us", the statement said. In 2002, several NASA interns went full-on Mission Impossible to steal millions of dollars worth of moon rocks from a safe held in an oxygen-purged vault. To investigate how the theft may have occurred, a security review is under way. And hopefully authorities can recover the priceless piece before it can be melted into a puddle of gold and disappears forever.

Police Report Additional Items Stolen From Armstrong Museum