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DATE: end of the month
COUNTY: Crockett County
LOCATION DETAILS: Cypress Creek, Hwy 152 where the creek dumps into Forked Deer River
NEAREST TOWN: Jackson
NEAREST ROAD: Highway 152
OBSERVED: It was late April, 1994, my dad borrowed my fishing boat and went down Cypress Creek to his favorite fishing hole to try to catch a few fish. It had been a long winter and it was the first time since he had broken his hip during the ice storm that he felt like being out in nature. My dad was very comfortable in the woods and on the water for he spent all his free time there. He had lived in this area all his life.
Later that evening around 9 pm my mother called she was worried that my dad hadnít come home yet. It was not unusual for him to stay out late in the woods or on the water, on numerous occasions in the past, I have had to go find him to tell him supperís ready to get him home, but on this night I to had a bad feeling about him not being home yet.
I got one of my friends to go with me to look for him. It was windy and dark so we took our flashlights and headed out.
Dadís favorite fishing spot was about a mile off of the highway right before Cypress Creek dumped into the Forked Deer River. The only way there is by boat or to hike.
We went down the east side of the creek, shinning our flashlights and yelling for my dad. As we approached the area where my dad like to fish we heard a clicking sound like an insect, but not like any insect I had ever heard. So we stopped and looked around when we spotted on the North bank of the Forked Deer River two sets of large red eyes.
This, of course, freaked us out. We started flashing the lights around and we spotted the boat on the other side of the creek but it was too deep and wide to cross so we had no choice but to go back to the highway and cross on the road and run back down the other side of the creek back to the boat. As we got back to the road my mother had called one of our cousins to help look for my dad. We told him we found him to go back to the house and call Rescue to meet us at the bridge. So we proceeded to run back down the west side of the creek to the spot the boat was.
We found my dad floating beside the boat with the boat rope wrapped around his hand. The red eyes were still on the North bank of the Forked Deer River, as if they were keeping watch on my Dad. We were able to get him in the boat and perform CPR but unfortunately he had already died.
So, of course, we were in a heighten state of emotions but we were trying to get my dad back to the Rescue unit waiting at the bridge on the highway. As we started paddling we were hitting something under the water but that couldnít be that for the creek was about 20 ft deep. We didnít know or understand how or who had taken my dadís life and it was as if they were after us as well. I kept yelling, ďCome on you SOB, you got him but youíre not going to get me. Iím not afraid of youĒ. Once we got several yards upstream we were able to paddle without resistance.
We finally got back to the bridge where Rescue was waiting. We found out later by the Medical Examiner that my Dad had suffered a massive heart attack.
Over the years I often wondered if the Creatures with large red eyes were keeping protective watch over my dad. I know with as much time, day and night, that my dad spent in those woods and on the water they knew him and they were trying to protect him in his time of need. The clicking sound was alerting me that my dad was near. Another thing, why didnít the boat and my dad float off, the creek and the river has a current and thereís no telling how long it stayed in that spot without floating off, it was not tied off.
After many years I finally went back during the daylight to the spot where my Dad died. I got a better reference to where the eyes were and I can tell you this, I couldnít tell exactly how tall they were but after seeing the area in daylight the Creatures were very large.
I know this is a very personal incident to be telling but I thought it had to be told. I feel that the creatures in no way did anything to harm my dad.
I feel grateful for the creatures I encountered that night for without them I would not have found my Dad a fast as I did. I just wish the outcome would have been different.
OTHER WITNESSES: one friend who went with me to look for my Dad and he helped me get him back to he highway to the Resuce unit waiting at the bridge on the highway.
OTHER STORIES: no
TIME AND CONDITIONS: After 9 pm it was dark and windy.
ENVIRONMENT: Woods with small creek and small river
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Ronie Powell:
I first spoke with this couple in the winter of 2009/2010 after they placed a call to the BFRO site and asked to speak with someone who could help them understand what had happened the night the husband's father died. They had not filed an official report at that time.
After speaking several times, we made plans for me to come and visit the site with them when the weather broke in the spring and I made that visit on March 13th.
I arrived in Alamo, TN late morning on the 13th and met this wonderful couple for the first time. I was instantly impressed with their down-to-earth no-nonsense personalities, and their sincere desire to understand what the husband had encountered when he found his father's body.
We first traveled to the site they had been living at when this very tragic event in their lives occurred. The house is now gone, but they related the numerous odd experiences they had while living in the house - including the feeling of being watched from the woods whenever they were outside, and often hearing very heavy, slow, rhythmic breathing coming either from under their house or from just outside the bathroom window, which was between the two bedrooms. They had several small children at home at the time of these occurrences. The house had been located in a very rural area, with heavy woods nearby and Cypress Creek within sight.
Since the route the husband and his friend took to travel along Cypress Creek in their search for the boat is no longer accessible due to a change in property ownership, we traveled further west and approached from the opposite direction, coming down the Forked Deer River to where it met the creek. We hiked in for a mile or more, and the husband was able to take us back to the exact spot where the boat and his father's body had been found. It was easy to ascertain, while hiking in, that both the husband and wife are avid outdoors people, who both hunt and fish and are very knowledgeable about the woods and local wildlife.
Cypress Creek at this point is a good sized stream with deep pools and a strong current. At the place the boat was found it is traveling through heavy forest, and is within yards of spilling into the River. Across the river at this point there is a sizable area of unaccessible woods, with no human habitations for at least a mile in any direction. We found abundant deer sign on our hike in.
I know that this return trip was an emotional experience for the husband, but I was very impressed by his straight forward recollection of the events of that night. This couple has done a very good job retelling their story and I only have a few points to add:
. As the husband and his friend were approaching the spot where the boat was found, they were flashing their lights around, and spotted two very large, widely spaced, sets of eyes that were high off the ground on the far bank of the Forked Deer River. Looking at this area in the daytime, there is more than abundant cover for something large to remain concealed. The husband reiterated to me several times that these were definitely not deer eyes and were not only different in shape, spacing and appearance, but were far too high off the ground. This witness does not know what made the clicking noises that first got his attention. I would like to say that clicking noises have been heard on numerous occasions, along with reported sasquatch activity. Unknown clicking noises have been heard by participants during BFRO Expeditions.
. The eyes were still there when they had back tracked and come down the far side of the creek to where the boat was resting against the bank, but it is unknown whether or not they were still there at the point they tried to paddle away.
. One paddle had been lost, so when the husband and his friend had placed his father in the boat and tried to paddle back up Cypress Creek against the current, they were using one paddle and a garden hoe that they found in the boat. The pool they were crossing when they were hitting 'something' under the water is 15 to 20 feet deep. I questioned the husband in depth about this occurrence and I'm completely satisfied that there was something under the water that was causing resistance to their forward progress. Both he and his friend were continually hitting something that they were eventually able to break free from. It is of course impossible to say what that might have been this many years after the fact.
In summation, after spending most of a day with this couple and reliving these events with them, I remain impressed with their sincerity and factual recounting of the events as they unfolded. I can only imagine how traumatic this event must have been at the time, but am left with no doubt that two large upright creatures with very large eyes that reflected red from the flashlights stood and observed the proceedings.
About BFRO Investigator Ronie Powell:
Raised in an avid outdoors-loving family. Spent summers in the remote wilderness areas of the Adirondacks and Eastern Canada
Attended the following BFRO expeditions:
- 2006 New York
- 2008 Oklahoma
- Assisted with the the first BFRO expedition in Tennessee in March 2009.
- 2009 Private Expedition in Illinois, Pennsylvania & Missouri
- 2010 Private Expedition in Florida & Pennsylvania, Illinois Expedition
- Organized the 2010 & 2011 Tennessee Expeditions
- 2011 Illinois, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and the first ever BFRO All Women's Expedition in Texas
- 2012 Ohio and Texas
- 2013 Organized the Kentucky Expedtion
- 2014 Texas
- 2015 Texas