Indonesian coffin maker becomes millionaire overnight after meteorite crashes through roof

Josua Hutagalung, a 33-year-old Indonesian coffin maker became an instant millionaire when a meteorite worth $1.8 million crashed through the roof of his house. Joshua was working on a coffin next to his house when the space rock smashed through the veranda at the edge of his living room in Kolang, North Sumatra.

The stone, weighing 2.1kg, left a large hole in the tin roof and ended up buried 15cm deep in the soil beside the house.

Josua, who managed to dig the rock out, said the meteorite was still warm and partially broken when he touched it.

It is estimated to be 4.5 billion years old and is classified as CM1/2 carbonaceous Chondrite, an extremely rare variety worth around $1.85million, or $857 per gram.

Meteorites are priced by the gram with the cheapest pure-rock varieties fetching $0.50 to $5.00 per gram., and those with rare extra-terrestrial metals selling for up to $1,000 per gram.

Regarding the extraordinary incident, Josua said “The sound was so loud that parts of the house were shaking too. And after I searched, I saw that the tin roof of the house had broken.”

“I strongly suspect that this rock is indeed an object from the sky that many people call a meteorite. Because it is impossible someone deliberately threw it or dropped it from above,” he added.

The meteorite, which is estimated to be 4.5 billion years old, is worth around $1.8 mn. Josua was given the equivalent to 30 years’ of his salary for the space rock.

The father of three said he would use some of the money to build a church in his community.

The meteorite was shipped to the US where it was bought by Jay Piatek, a doctor and meteorite collector from Indianapolis, according to the Lunar and Planetary Institute in Texas, US.

The meteorite is classified as CM1/2 carbonaceous Chondrite, an extremely rare variety, the Institute recorded.

Three further fragments of the meteorite were found in nearby areas when it crashed in August one was discovered in a paddy field less than 3km from Josua’s home.

The meteorite has been officially named as Kolang, is estimated to have a total weight of 2.5 kg, according to the Lunar and Planetary Institute in Texas, US.

The interior of the meteor is dark grey and black, with small light-coloured speckles.

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