Submitted to BFRO by witness on Monday, August 30, 2004.
Family has several sightings at a summer cabin near Winamac.
COUNTY: Pulaski County
LOCATION DETAILS: All the sightings were near the Dentwood cabins, right off River Road, just outside of Winamac.
NEAREST TOWN: Winamac
NEAREST ROAD: River Road
OBSERVED: These are my husband and his family’s accounts.
The first sighting was in 1953. The Tippecanoe River runs beside a cluster of cottages near the little town of Winamac, in northern Indiana. A long suspension bridge, spans the river, and was the only means of getting to the five cottages, other than by boat. At each end, flood lights were mounted, and at night, each lighted the bridge half way across. The bank of the river was rather steep. Behind the group of cottages, the woods were thick and dense. Children were not allowed to wander there, and play was confined largely to the area right around the cabins.
Two brothers, each with large families, had come for the weekend to enjoy fishing, boating, and just generally, being together. My husband, one of the children, was then about five. On this particular day, a group of little girls, his sisters and cousins, were playing between two of the cabins. The grownups, and some of the children, were inside.
About the middle of the day, terrified screams came from the group of girls. When the adults, hearing the screams, ran outside, they found the girls crying hysterically, and pointing towards the woods. A huge creature, about seven feet tall, walking on two legs, covered from head to toe, with long dark hair, was walking the other way, towards the tree line. He was walking upright, on two feet. One child was saying that it had touched her; others were saying that it had just one eye.
A rifle was brought out from the cabin, and one man, my husband’s father took aim. He had the beast in his site, held the gun for a few seconds, and then lowered it. Cries of, “Shoot him,” could not persuade him to fire at the beast. When asked later, why he didn’t shoot, he said, “I was afraid that I might be shooting a man.” One of his children, now, my husband, came running outside with the adults and saw the creature’s back as he walked towards, and into the woods.
Ten years later, in 1963, my husband, (then fifteen), and his family, were once again spending the week in one of the cottages. Late one night, after all the others had gone to bed, he was down on one of the docks. Loving the river at night, he often walked its banks. On this particular night, he began to hear a movement coming from behind the cabins at the edge of the woods. He walked up the bank, and went around to the back of the cabin to see what was making such a ruckus. There, in the darkness, coming out of the woods slowly was the same creature that had frightened the family ten years ago. He ran back to the front porch, hurried into the house, and woke up his father. The two of them, without waking the others, went onto the screened porch, which was in front, towards the river, and in the darkness, with a 22 rifle and only the bridge lights shining, they waited.
They began to smell a terrible stench, like that of rotten meat, getting worse as the creature neared them. This cabin was right next to the bridge. They knew that if the creature was going to cross it, he would walk right by them, about ten feet away, and pass under the light. Inside the cabin, the family dog was beginning to whine. They stood quietly, and soon the creature was beside them, about ten feet away. He seemed to be intent on going for the bridge. As he passed the porch, he turned and looked towards the teen and his father, but seemed not to see them, and didn’t regard them in any way, nor, the dog, which was now howling, and tearing at the door.
The creature made his way to the bridge. As he passed under the floodlight on the cabin side, he was clearly seen, as huge, covered with dark hair, and walking upright like a man. The smell was horrible. When he got to the bridge, he went down on all fours and began to cross it using his arms and hands, as well as his feet. When he passed the half way mark on the bridge, and neared the other side of the bridge, the dog was let out on the porch and crashed through the screen door, running after the creature. It raced across the bridge. By this time, the creature had crossed the bridge and was in the darkness beyond. The teen and his father could only guess what was happening by the sounds they heard – growling, fighting noises, and then whimpering and yelping. The dog came back to the cabin covered with cuts and blood.
The only other time that anyone said that the creature had been seen was an account told to me by my husband’s niece, who often stayed in the same cabin as a child. She said she woke up one morning and saw a large, yellow, hairy creature looking through the door. He left quickly. This was about 1976.
OTHER WITNESSES: The first incident was witnessed by, maybe 8 or 9 people. Prior to the incident, the children were playing in the yard. The adults were in the house. In the second incident, there were only two witnesses. One had been at the river bank, walking, the other was asleep in the cabin. In the last incident, there was only one witness and she had been sleeping.
OTHER STORIES: No
TIME AND CONDITIONS: The first sighting was in the middle of the day, the next, 11 or 12 at night and the last early in the morning.
ENVIRONMENT: There was a thick, dense wood behind the cabins. It was in a rural farming area, right beside the Tippecanoe River. A suspension bridge is the only access to the cabins, but they are located near the road, on the other side of the river.
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Stan Courtney:
I spoke at length with the witness by phone. Even though it has been a number of years ago, he remembers with vivid detail the events of the encounters.