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East Bay Pearl Harbor Survivor Has Stolen Item Replaced

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USS West Virginia (BB-48) afire forward, immediately after the Japanese air attack at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. USS Tennessee (BB-43) is on the sunken battleship's opposite side. (US Navy)

USS West Virginia (BB-48) afire forward, immediately after the Japanese air attack at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. USS Tennessee (BB-43) is on the sunken battleship’s opposite side. (US Navy)

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SAN LEANDRO (CBS SF) — An elderly World War II veteran who survived the attack on Pearl Harbor met with a good Samaritan in San Leandro Thursday afternoon to receive a gift replacing a piece of U.S. Navy memorabilia stolen in a car burglary earlier this month.

San Leandro police Lt. Jeff Tudor said that in the April 4 burglary, someone took several items belonging to Michael Ganitch, 92, including a U.S. Navy sextant, a sea tool used to measure angles between objects.

The story came to the attention of the good Samaritan, a former San Leandro resident, who was heartbroken by the tale, Tudor said.

The good Samaritan purchased a replacement sextant for Ganitch, and presented it to him at the San Leandro Police Department Thursday afternoon.

Tudor said the man who bought the sexton is from a military family and felt distraught that someone would take a sentimental object from “someone who did so much for this country.”

The man contacted Tudor to set up a meeting to give Ganitch the replacement sextant, but has emphasized that he doesn’t want the exchange to be about him, Tudor said.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco and Bay City News Service. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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