DELAWARE, OH (WCMH) – A Delaware man is devastated after his homemade mobile wood-fired pizza oven was stolen from right in front of his home Wednesday afternoon.
Richard Edmonds says the 2,000 pound brick oven sitting on a trailer is a one of a kind homemade creation that has been 25 years in the making.
Edmonds says around 1pm Wednesday, someone pulled up in front of his home on Stratford Road, hitched up the trailer and rolled away with it.
“It’s like stabbing me in the heart, I mean really dude,” Edmonds said. “It’s like taking my baby.”
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He says he was inspired to build the oven by a story his father told him 25 years ago about a man making bread in a wood-fired oven. That story stuck with him until 2010, when he came across an abandoned trailer while on a Boy Scout camping trip with his son.
With the permission of the scouts, he took the trailer back to his shop, and six months later, he had constructed a large brick Pompeii style oven on top of it.
Shortly after the theft, the oven was seen on North Union Street in Delaware around 1:30pm being pulled by a black SUV. Nobody has reported seeing it since.
“You’d have to have balls of steel to drive it down the road if it’s stolen,” Edmonds said.
The oven is more than just a hobby for Edmonds, he shares his creation with the community. He brings his mobile pizza oven to church festivals, Boy Scout fundraisers, parties and other events.
A Facebook post by his daughter alerting the community to the theft received a huge response Wednesday, shared more than 1,000 times.
“I really can’t believe that. It really chokes me up,” Edmonds said. “That the Facebook community can generate that kind of response, it’s pretty amazing.”
Edmonds says he fears that someone took the trailer solely for the metal and that it’s sitting in pieces in a scrap yard somewhere.
Delaware police confirmed to NBC4 that the oven was reported stolen, but could not provide any more details.
Anyone with information is asked to call Delaware police at 740-203-1111.