Aug. 2 (UPI) -- Ohio police said they're searching for a gold replica of an Apollo program lunar lander stolen last week right out of a museum honoring astronaut Neil Armstrong.
The theft last week at the Armstrong Air and Space Museum in Wapakoneta included a five-inch tall, 18-karat gold replica of the "Eagle" lunar lander, made by jeweler Cartier, that Armstrong and astronaut Buzz Aldrin famously rode down to the surface of the moon on July 20, 1969.
Other artifacts -- including medals, coins and family heirlooms -- were also taken in the heist, police said.
Authorities said several thieves were involved in the nighttime burglary. One picked a lock on the museum's front door, Wapakoneta Mayor Thomas Stinebaugh said, and triggered an alarm. The thieves, however, were able to take the items before police arrived.
Surevellance video of the theft offered little more than moving gray blurs. The primary artifact, the lunar lander, could be melted down for its gold content.
"This piece is very rare as it was presented to Neil Armstrong in Paris, shortly after the moon landing," Chief of Police Russel Hunlock said in a statement. "A value of such an item cannot be determined."
Armstrong died in 2012.
Identical models were also given to Aldrin and Apollo 11 command module pilot Michael Collins, who flew the main spacecraft while the other two were on the moon's surface. All three men took a world tour after their accomplishment, during which the replicas were presented to them in Paris.