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From deep in the grickle-grass, Lorax statue stolen from Dr. Seuss estate

San Diego Police Dept. / Reuters

The Lorax statue at the estate of Theordor Geisl, aka Dr. Seuss, was stolen over the weekend.

Perhaps he ventured off to warn other Once-lers about threats to the environment.

But more likely, the Lorax -- in this case a 2-foot-tall, 300-pound bronze statue that resided in La Jolla, Calif., on the estate of Theodor Geisel, aka Dr. Seuss -- was stolen.

Property manager Carl Romero told the San Diego Union Tribune that he and Audrey Geisel, Dr. Seuss’ 90-year-old widow, discovered the statue was missing on Monday morning as they were walking through the garden.

The statue stood beneath a century-old Italian Stone Pine, according to LATimes.com. Romero told the Times that the pine inspired the tree from the book “Horton Hears a Who.” In the story, Horton, an elephant, sits on a branch of the tree.

Romero saw footprints in the garden, a sign that a thief had dragged the statue to the road and lifted it over a fence, the Tribune reported.

The incident recalled an early passage from the Lorax, the book: "And deep in the Grickle-grass, some people say, if you look deep enough you can still see, today, where the Lorax once stood just as long as it could before somebody lifted the Lorax away."

The only Seuss character at the Geisel estate, it was cast and created by Lark Grey Dimond-Cates, Audrey Geisel's daughter and Dr. Seuss' stepdaughter.

“I want very badly to get our little Lorax back home where he belongs,” Dimond-Cates told the Tribune. “Wherever he is, he’s scared, lonely and hungry. He’s not just a hunk of metal to us. He was a family pet.”

The statue, valued at $10,000, featured the Lorax, a squat, orange-whiskered creature, standing atop a wooden stump. The word “Unless” was inscribed at its base, a reference to Lorax's warning that “unless” someone plants the last remaining tree seed, they will disappear from the world.

Universal Pictures recently released a movie loosely based on the story.

Watch The Lorax trailer

Theodor Geisel died in 1991 at age 87.

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