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Heisman ring stolen from athlete's OC home

January 31, 2012 12:00:00 AM PST
John Cappelletti is Penn State's only Heisman Trophy winner, and as of Monday, is also the victim of a burglary.

Personal items were stolen out of the 59-year-old's Laguna Niguel home, including personal items, awards like his Heisman Trophy ring and other items dating as far back as high school. The Heisman Trophy itself was not inside Cappelletti's home, but is instead stored at a secure location. Authorities said the total loss is about $50,000.

The former Penn State running back was awarded the Heisman in 1973. He gave an emotional acceptance speech, dedicating the award to his younger brother who later died of leukemia. The poignant moment later became the basis of a best-selling book and TV movie.

Just last week, Cappelletti attended the funeral of Penn State's Joe Paterno.

"It's difficult," he said. "I've had a rough fall between the Penn State stuff and Coach Paterno last week, and then this happening. It's not good timing."

Cappelletti said he doesn't believe his home was targeted based on what was taken, which included jewelry and the irreplaceable sports items.

"A lot of personal items I'd just like to pass down to kids when it's that time," he said of the items. "And that would be nice to have them back."

Anyone who comes across sports items related to Cappelletti being sold should call Orange County Crime Stoppers at (855) 847-6227.