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Car Hit By Meteorite In Peekskill In 1992 Headed To Paris Museum

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- A Chevrolet with a celestial connection is headed from New York to France.

As CBS2's Tony Aiello reported, the car was heavily damaged 25 years ago, but it is so valuable that it is insured for $1 million. It is also so viewable that it is going on display at a museum in Paris.

And while the 1980 Chevy Malibu is a clunker, it's well-traveled. It has already been to Munich and Tokyo.

Darryl Pitt of the Macovich Collection of Meteorites owns the car, which rocketed into fame in 1992. A space rock plummeted to earth and punctured the tank while the car was parked in Peekskill.

"When everybody thought about it being a meteorite, we were just like, 'Nobody's going to believe us,'" a man CBS2 interviewed at the time said.

Boy, was he proven wrong.

There were no pocket-friendly smartphones with video capabilities in 1992, but video camcorders were popular. And it happened on a Friday night, when lots of people took those camcorders to high school football games.

As a result, 16 different cameras captured the glowing descent as the meteorite plowed through the atmosphere toward Peekskill.

"The idea that your car could be sitting in the driveway and a meteorite would come along and make a big hole in it – I mean, that's interesting," said Dr. Dallas Abbott of the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.

It is so interesting that the Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle is shipping the car to Paris, where it will be on display for three months.

It will be the centerpiece of an exhibit on meteorites.

"It makes it very very real," Pitt said. "It looks like the car was opened by an extraterrestrial can opener, which is what it was."

Pieces of the meteorite now sell for four times the price of gold. And five years ago, the tail lamp and tire to the car sold for $5,000.

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