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THROWBACK THURSDAY: An Olympic Prank of Statues

An Olympic-sized prank had stolen statues in the stands

This is a story from the WQAD News 8 archives from August 2001 by reporter Eric Roby.

MOLINE, Illinois – It's an unlikely group of characters: the Virgin Mary, a rabbit, and even a child.

They've all be kidnapped and taken to Wharton Fieldhouse in Moline.

"I came outside to have a cigarette, looked in the flower pot over here, and it had a note in it saying my statue was in an Olympics."

Yes, that's right.  The "Stationary Olympics" to be correct.

Last night someone stole all of these statues and left notes behind.

This is what it said:

"Be proud and watch your very special lawn ornament win at the event of their choice.  This opportunity comes along once in a lifetime.  Thank you for your support.  We know your little athletes will rock.  Sincerely, Coach Mower.

"I don't know what it is," said Kelly Bangert.  "But it's very strange."

We caught up with Kelly Bangert as she went to Wharton Fieldhouse to find her lawn ornament.    She's a little upset.

"I see they stole a Blessed Mother, they'll probably go to Hell for that."

Police have been notified but the "Stationary Olympics" continue as owners keep showing up to find their statues.

"I don't know who did it, it was probably a prank," said Bangert.

"And I suppose it's a funny one if it's not one of your statues."

UPDATE: Moline Police said in August of 2016 that there was never a tip to police nor an arrest in the case.

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