Truck Carrying Stolen Historic Church Organ Pipes Recovered in Raleigh Neighborhood

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On Tuesday morning in Raleigh, Memphis Police officers found a stolen Penske truck that was carrying hundreds of organ pipes for the Calvary Episcopal Church in the city. Church officials claimed that when the vehicle was stolen over the weekend, over 2,000 pipes that had been taken last week from an organ chamber for maintenance were inside.

Fifteen of the approximately 55 containers that were loaded aboard the truck are still missing, even though the truck and most of its priceless cargo have been found. The church is still optimistic that they will also heal, though.

Stolen Organ Pipes from Memphis Church to Resume Journey North After Truck Recovery

According to the article shared in WREG, the Spencer Organ Company of Boston was restoring the organ pipes. The majority of the work is being overseen by the company’s owner, Joseph Rotella, who told WREG that even though the organ pipes had little value on the open market, replacing them would have cost the church close to a million dollars.

Because of Rotella’s careful planning, the pipes’ precise dimensions were taken before they were packaged. This enables the restoration project to move forward by allowing any still missing pipes to be recreated. It is anticipated that the project will be finished in around 18 months.

Leaders of Calvary Episcopal Church thanked the Memphis Police officers for finding the Penske truck while on patrol. They also expressed their gratitude to everyone who helped get the word out about the stolen car and made it possible for it to be found.

According to another source, Fox 13 said that after a theft that interrupted their journey, organ pipes from the Calvary Episcopal Church in Memphis are set to continue their trip to Boston for a restoration project. According to the church officials, the remaining containers will be loaded onto a different truck and will then continue their journey to Boston.

Scott Lane, CEO of Lane Music in Memphis, shared his thoughts on the misplaced crates. He emphasized that even if the pipes on the streets have no intrinsic value, replacing them would cost millions of dollars. In order to fit the precise scale of the chapel for which they were created, these pipes were painstakingly made from metal and wood, and he accentuated their distinctive character. The organ was essentially built especially for that particular church.

Before the pipes were packed, the Boston-based Spencer Organ Company scrupulously noted their exact measurements. This implies that any missing pipes can be replaced if necessary, allowing the repair process to move forward.

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Historic Organ Pipes Valued at $800,000

Joseph Rotella, the owner of Spencer Organ Company, explained the tremendous significance of the stolen items. In the report in Action News 5, Rotella highlighted that despite the objects’ modest value outside of their particular context, their historical significance makes them extremely precious to both the instrument they were designed for and the larger community. He further stressed their unique significance to this undertaking by stating that reproducing these goods would be a formidable challenge.

According to Kristin Lensch, Calvary’s organist and choirmaster, the organ pipes are cherished for their considerable monetary value and their sentimental worth to the church and its congregation. Lensch stated that the loss of the organ pipes is devastating, but there is optimism that it is only a temporary setback.

Even though the truck has been recovered, fifteen out of the fifty-five crates containing the organ pipes still need to be included. Lensch expressed her hopeful anticipation of their return, stating they are confident that the truck will be found and will be returned to them for it to be used to serve God again.

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