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Banana Sam, money famous for being kidnapped, dies at 19 at San Francisco Zoo

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File - In this Dec. 31, 2011 file photo provided by the San Francisco Zoo, Jill Andrews, Assistant Curator of Primates at the San Francisco Zoo, holds Banana-Sam during his physical examination on upon his safe return to the Zoo after being stolen. Zoo officials said the 2-pound squirrel monkey succumbed to heart disease Thursday at the age of 19. (AP Photo/San Francisco Zoo, File) (The Associated Press)

Banana Sam, a monkey who gained fame when he was stolen from the San Francisco Zoo two years ago, has died at the age of 19.

Zoo officials say the 2-pound squirrel monkey passed away Thursday of heart disease. A squirrel monkey's life span is 20 years.

On the night of Dec. 29, 2010, someone apparently cut into the animal's cage and kidnapped Banana Sam, generating worldwide news attention. A $5,000 reward was offered for the monkey's return.

Two days later, Banana Sam was found in the Stern Grove neighborhood of San Francisco, about a mile away from the zoo.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports (http://bit.ly/1aWjV4F ) that the monkey has since lived in a faux-tropical landscape where he faded from the media spotlight.

Banana Sam's kidnapper was never discovered.

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