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Cryptids

‘Sea Monster’ Kills Four Teens in Florida

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In March of 1962 five teens from Fort Walton Beach, Florida set out on a raft to explore the semi-submerged shipwreck of the USS Massachusetts. Of the five teens that set out on the mission only one returned alive. The 16 year old survivor was named Brian McCleary and his account of what happened to him and his friends that day is bizarre and truly disturbing.

Brian retold his account of the events to Fate Magazine in 1965. Brian was joined on the trip by his friends Eric Ruyle, 16, Bradford Rice, 14, Warren Felley, 16, and Larry Stuart Bill, 17. He says he checked the weather report before embarking on their journey and the weather was supposed to be clear. They drove from Fort Walton to Fort Pickens State Park, where they entered the waters of Pensacola Bay. The boys had a “seven-foot Air Force life raft,” outfitted with “a drift anchor, pockets for provisions, and oars.” The water was ice cold.

The boys took turns paddling to help save energy for exploring the shipwreck, but on the trip out, a storm rolled in. The wind and waves were pushing the raft out to sea. Eric, Warren, and Brian jumped into the water to try to push the raft from behind, but were unable to make any progress towards shore so they climbed back into the boat. The waves were getting higher and higher and the boys had to hold on tight to the sides of the boat.

The sky began to grow dark and other boats out at sea began to heading in to shore. They attempted to wave down help from other vessels but they just waved back oblivious to the trouble the boys were in. After a while, the storm lets up but a thick fog rolls in limiting their visibility to 25 feet. The water around them suddenly becomes unseasonably warm and the smell of rotting fish fills the air. Out of nowhere what looked like a telephone pole with a bulb on top appeared near the boys, bent in the middle and then dove under the water making a high pitched whine.

The boys began to panic and jumped into the water. Patches of brown, crusty slime lay all over it’s surface. The boys tried to swim for the shipwreck but they were all tired and cramping up. After they have been swimming for about 30 seconds Warren cries out, “Hey! Help me! Help me! It’s got Brad…” before he, too, vanishes beneath the surface. Brian, Larry and Eric keep swimming but have lost sight of Warren and Brad.

Next Larry suddenly vanishes. Eric and Brian frantically search for him but it has become so dark they can’t see him. Eric becomes overcome with fatigue and holds on to Brian’ to stay afloat. After what felt like a couple of hours, lightning flashes and Brian is able to make out the wreck of the USS Massachusetts. He frantically swims toward it. Eric and Brian are separated by a wave but they both continue to swim towards the wreckage.

Suddenly the the long telephone pole like figure emerged from the water once more and dove on top of eric, dragging him under the water. Brian screams and swims past the ship. He can’t remember anything after this until he wakes up on the shore and is found by some bystanders.

Brian was taken to hospital and he reported his story to the local police. They told him to keep quiet about the sea monster from his story as no good would come of it. They didn’t believe him to be guilty of any wrongdoing so let him be. Brian had a mental breakdown after the incident but was able to resume his life after 3 months of recovery. He was honest about what happened to him, telling people about the sea monster but suffered greatly for the rest of his life as few people believed his story about the sea monster.

Skeptics claim the boys were simply hallucinating from exhaustion and drowned. Others claimed they saw a whale which caused them to panic and then drown. In the end Brian stopped talking about what happened and passed away in 2016.

Sources

A Florida Teen Said A ‘Sea Monster’ Killed Four Of His Friends

http://morbidstreak.blogspot.com/2021/05/my-escape-from-sea-monster-wild-tale-of.html

http://www.trueauthority.com/cryptozoology/death.htm

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Cryptids

The Awful

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The Awful cryptid as described by Vermont residents in 1925

In 1923, several residents of Berkshire and Richford, Vermont reported seeing a creature resembling a griffin, with a 20 foot wingspan and a serpentine tail.

“The Awful” Cryptid Sightings of 1925

Berkshire and Richford, Vermont are peaceful countryside towns located between Lake Champlain and Lake Memphremagog, near the Canadian Province of Quebec.

In 1925 several residents of these towns reported encounters with an unusual flying creature.

The creature was described as being similar to the mythical Griffin, with a grayish color, a 20-foot wingspan, a snake-like tail, and big claws capable of holding a medium sized dog. These strange sightings caused panic among the locals who came to dub the creature “the Awful”.

The first sightings of the mysterious creature were reported by two sawmill workers in Richford. As they crossed the main street bridge, they saw a very large beast on the nearby rooftop of the Boright building, glaring at them. According to the tale, one of the men was so scared that he had a heart attack out of fear. He had to be carried home but eventually recovered. However, for weeks afterward, he had nightmares about the creature, waking up his family with screams during the night.

In the following months, locals kept reporting sightings of this mysterious creature, causing fear and panic among residents. Farmers shared stories of it flying over their fields, and others saw it landing on their house rooftops. One resident, Oella Hopkins, experienced this when she was hanging laundry outside. The family dog got upset and started barking, and when Oella looked, she saw the creature, known as The Awful, perched on her farmhouse roof, staring at her. Terrified, Oella ran inside and hid under her bed for hours.

Later Sightings of “The Awful”

By the end of 1925, sightings of the creature became less frequent and almost stopped completely by 1928. Even though people thought it had disappeared, some locals claimed to see it every now and then since the 1920s. One such person was Lisa Maskell from Montgomery, who said she spotted the creature near Trout River when she was a child. When she saw a drawing of a pterodactyl later on, she thought it looked like the creature she saw and believed it resembled The Awful.

In 2006, there were a few new reports suggesting that The Awful might have returned to Northern Vermont. In October 2006, a person wrote in the County Courier about a respected person in Richford who saw the creature suddenly appear and grab a big black crow from a pine tree. The witness was surprised and said the creature flew around his house three times.

After this article, more people shared sightings. A woman remembered seeing the monster when she was about ten. It was in a tree near the Trout River, watching them with its strange beak, reminding her of a pterodactyl.

A dowser named Edith Green said people in Richford have been nervous about the creature for a long time.

An older man mentioned that the creature has been seen often in the Gibou area for the past 25 years, even recently. Locals usually leave it alone, and it leaves them alone, with a few exceptions.

A resident of East Richford said the creature has been spotted recently around the Slide Road area. He mentioned you can often hear it before seeing it, making a strange, low screaming sound and the flapping of its large wings when it’s close.

Despite its scary appearance, the creature was never known to attack people; it seemed more like it was just watching. There’s one account mentioning it flying over Berkshire Field near Lost Nation Road and appearing to hold a baby or a small animal, although it’s more likely to have been an animal.

William DeFalco covers the story of The Awful

Possible Explanations for the Awful

Assuming the reports of the Awful are not just a hoax or an old wives tale what else could be going on here? It’s possible that soe type of rare, large bird is lurking in the wilds of Vermont and is only seen very rarely due to a lack of numbers. The Awful could simple have been a particularly large owl or Eagle.

If paranormal in origin, the Awful does bear a small resemblence to the Mothman of West Virginia. Perhaps it continues to lurk in the shadows, waiting to come our and warn residents of impending doom.

What do you think about the Awful? Tell us your theories in the comments.

If you enjoyed learning about the Awful you might also be interested in the Lechuza, a strange owl-like creature or the Prime Hook Swamp Monster.

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Cryptids

Eric Shipton Discovers Possible yeti Footprints on Mount Everest

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In the fall of 1951, English mountain climbers Eric Shipton and Dr. Michael Ward were exploring routes to climb Mount Everest from Nepal. While on this mission Shipton discovered some huge footprints in the snow, possibly belonging to the fabled Yeti.

The strange footprints discovered on Mount Everest by Eric Shipton, Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Eric Shipton’s Everest Expedition

Eric Shipton’s expedition team including Edmund Hillary who later became the first man to reach the summit of Everest. Photo: Curious Archive

In 1951, when Mount Everest wasn’t a busy tourist spot, two English mountain climbers, Eric Shipton and Dr. Michael Ward, joined a trip to figure out how to reach Everest’s summit from Nepal. Shipton led the expedition, and their discoveries helped plan the successful climb by Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay in 1953. This expedition not only mapped the way up the tallest mountain but also marked a return to climbing after a pause during World War II.

The Yeti Footprints

At an altitude of around 15-16,000 feet, Shipton and Ward came across an unusual sight – a set of strange footprints in the snow in the Menlung Basin. Because they didn’t have proper tools to measure the footprints, they improvised using an ice pick, a backpack, and Michael Ward’s left boot. Shipton took photos as they closely examined what they found.

In one photo, comparing the boot to a footprint(below), it was evident that the print was much wider than a normal human foot, almost twice as wide, as Ward estimated. The footprint’s toes looked strange, with the big toe being lower and larger than expected for a human. It raised questions about how someone could walk in the snow without foot protection in freezing temperatures, even if it was a human print.

The photo of the Yeti footprint with Shipton’s Boot on Everest

Perplexed, Shipton and Ward tracked the mysterious footprints down the glacier for about a mile until they set up camp for the night. A few days later, their teammates W. H. Murray and Tom Bourdillon joined them and examined the peculiar footprints. Bourdillon noted in his diary that the prints had become somewhat distorted by the sun by the time he reached them, but he still found them surprising and unexplained.

After the photos were published, several expeditions took place in the Himalayas and Central Asia to determine if the creature in Shipton’s photographs actually existed. However, no evidence was found to prove the existence of the Yeti. Some accused Shipton of staging a hoax, but others who had seen the footprints vouched for the authenticity of Shipton’s photographs.

Possible Explanations for the Footprints

Deformed Humans

While the footprints could be evidence of Yeti living in the Himalayas there are a number of other theories about where these footprints could have come from.

Dr. Michael Ward, a medical doctor who was a part of Shipton’s expedition had an interesting theory about the footprints. He believed that the footprints could have been made by a local Tibetan with differently-shaped feet. In communities without easy access to medical help, foot abnormalities from birth might remain.

Dr Ward had seen Tibetans with deformed feet and some who walked with bare feet in the snow.

One case occurred during the Silver Hut Expedition in 1960-1961, which stayed at 19,000ft in the Everest region during the winter. A 35-year-old Nepalese pilgrim named Man Bahadur, who usually lived at 6000ft, visited. He spent 14 days at 15,300ft and above, not wearing shoes or gloves throughout. He walked in the snow and on rocks with bare feet without getting frostbite. He had minimal clothing and no sleeping bag or protective gear except a woolen coat.

He was monitored for four days without shelter between 16,500ft and 17,500ft, with temperatures as low as -13°C to -15°C at night and below freezing during the day. Eventually, he developed cracks in his toe skin, which became infected, and he went to lower levels for treatment. If any European members of the group had followed the same routine, they would likely have suffered severe frostbite and hypothermia.

Bears

Yeti researcher Daniel C. Taylor believes he has convincingly proven that Yeti prints are made by Asiatic Black bears standing on their hind legs. He has recreated the footprints in the snow using casts from a black bear and believes them to be very similar.

Taylor believes that the long footprints in the snow from 1951 were made by the Asiatic black bear, known as Ursus thibetanus. When the bear put its front paw down, it didn’t press too hard into the snow, so the claws on the front paw didn’t leave clear marks. After that, the hind paw landed on the back part of the print, stretching it to about twelve inches in length.

The Nepalese Legend of the Yeti

Certain local Sherpas think that the Himalayas are home to unusual beings, and they view the Yeti (also commonly called the “abominable snowman”) as a guardian. On the other hand, some believe it to be a threat.

“There is a kind of mysterious creature that lives in the Himalayas,” explained Ang Tshering Sherpa, leader of the Nepal Mountaineering Association in Katmandu, who is from the Khumbu region.

Bob Gymlan discuses why he believes the footprints found by Eric Shipton are evidence of the existence of Yeti

Do you think there are Yeti in the Himalayas? Tell us your theories in the comments!

If you enjoyed this article you might also be interested in a child lost in the woods that was protected by a bigfoot or a bigfoot that was hit by a train.

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