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COUNTY: Perry County
LOCATION DETAILS: Lake Tipsaw
NEAREST TOWN: Leopolde
NEAREST ROAD: Hwy 37
OBSERVED: My wife and I had a sighting in June 1981 at Tipsaw Lake in Perry County. We had taken a picnic lunch with us to the park and beach area, only to find it under construction and closed. We did enter the beach area by way of the boat ramp area where we parked our car. The area was closed that day and not a single person or fisherman was on the lake. We had two small boys who immediately began to swim at the end of beach area next to the boat ramp. My wife and I were under a shade tree about 15 yards off the beach watch the boys swim. My wife was putting the picnic together while I was relaxing and looking across the lake. I could see a tall man moving between the popular trees very strangely high on the hill side near the dam to our right. The boys were having a great time, playing in the water making much noise. The tall dark man behind to move down the hillside to the edge of the water looking toward our boys in the water. The strange looking person or bigfoot began pacing back and forth looking in the direction of our boys. I continued watching but could not believe what I thought I was seeing. I then stop my wife and ask her to look toward the dam and tell me what she was seeing. My wife and I observed this being for another minute or two when he stopped pacing and began moving up the dam in a diagonal manner some 1200 yards away. My wife said we our leaving, get the boys and lets get out of here. We then headed back for Crawford Co. and have never forgotten that day. We returned to Tipsaw for the first time this past summer and looked at the spot that invoked all that fear some 27 years ago.
OTHER WITNESSES: None, My wife and I
OTHER STORIES: Yes, just that some drivers in the area along I-64 junction with Hwy 37 had made similar sighting at the time.
TIME AND CONDITIONS: About noon, excellent light, if only I would of had a camera, what a picture that would have been.
ENVIRONMENT: Lake with secondary growth woodland around
Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Harold Benny:
I talked with the witness and found him to be credible. Although the sighting was several years ago, it was still fresh in his mind. We revised the sighting distance to about 300 yards. Total observation time was about eight minutes. He watched the bipedal animal first descend the hill and then pace up and down the water's edge while watching the boys swim. The witness was adamant that the tall black creature could not have been a bear or man.
About BFRO Investigator Harold Benny:
Harold Benny holds two degrees in Zoology and was a Biology teacher for several years. He participated in the following BFRO expeditions: Michigan UP 07, Arkansas I 07, Arkansas II (Oklahoma) 07, N. Florida 08, Missouri 08, Tennessee 09, and Ohio 09. Harold has organized several private Illinois expeditions and in 2006 recieved the IDNR Volunteer Of The Year Award as part of the Montgomery Co. Hunter Education group.