A Duluth businessman offered a $5,000 reward Thursday for the intact return of a vintage boat replete with family memories.

“It can’t come in a plastic bag in pieces,” Brad Skytta said of the reward. “It’s got to be a full, safe recovery.”

Skytta said his 1972 yellow G-W Invader was taken from a Lincoln Park warehouse on the 1700 block of West Superior Street on Sept. 2.

He fears the boat has been sold to a party who doesn’t know it has been stolen.

“It’s like new, and was given to me for my 12th birthday,” Skytta said. “It’s super rare and there’s nothing like this, of this condition, that’s nearly 50 years old.”

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Skytta reported the boat and two mint-condition pickup trucks — a 1990 Chevrolet with 40,000 miles and a Ford F-150 with 50,000 miles — stolen from his warehouse Sept. 14. That's when Skytta said he was made aware of the burglary at his warehouse.

Duluth police have since recovered the two trucks, he said. The Chevy was returned to Skytta with broken rear and passenger windows.

“They’ve done a great job,” Skytta said of the police department. “They have an agent working his tail off trying to make something right that’s very wrong.”

Owner Brad Skytta shared a family photo of the 1972 G-W Invader that was taken along with two pickup trucks from a warehouse on West Superior Street in Duluth. Skytta is offering $5,000 for information leading to the recovery of an intact watercraft. 
Contributed / Skytta family
Owner Brad Skytta shared a family photo of the 1972 G-W Invader that was taken along with two pickup trucks from a warehouse on West Superior Street in Duluth. Skytta is offering $5,000 for information leading to the recovery of an intact watercraft. Contributed / Skytta family

Police confirmed details of the burglary.

“Upon arrival, officers spoke to the property manager who stated that two pickup trucks, two boat trailers, a sewage pump and a speed boat were all stolen,” the Duluth Police Department said in a written statement.

Police said video surveillance appeared to show items being stolen around 7:20 a.m. Sept. 2.

In addition to a large vacant showroom building, there are multiple warehouse buildings on the 1700 block of West Superior Street listed to NorthStar Ford, a business Skytta is associated with as president and partner of the Duluth-based Evergreen Group.

Skytta said police have arrested suspects in the crime, but so far it does not appear that there have been any charges filed. The News Tribune generally does not identify suspects until they are formally charged.

Surveillance showed the boat wrapped in an oversize boat cover, Skytta said, suspecting it was to conceal its sporty, bright-yellow appearance. Skytta called the boat a keepsake, and estimated its value at below the reward price.

"I'll pay more for it than anyone else in the world," he said. "It’s so unique that if you pull into a driveway with this, everybody in the neighborhood is going to run over and look at it."

Duluth police recommended anyone with information to call 911.