DHS Squirrel
Geographical Index > United States > Florida > Manatee County > Report # 25978
Report # 25978  (Class A)
Submitted by witness on Sunday, May 17, 2009.
Bluff charge by a sasquatch at sunrise on Manatee River, 30 miles south of Tampa
(Show Printer-friendly Version)

YEAR: 1983

SEASON: Spring

MONTH: March


STATE: Florida

COUNTY: Manatee County

LOCATION DETAILS: [Investigator (MM) note:

Address of the Christian Retreat property mentioned in this report:

1201 Glory Way Blvd, Bradenton, FL 34212

GPS for location of encounter: 27.521100, -82.404392



OBSERVED: There is too much to report for this page, so I'm requesting that someone call or meet me to collect all the information. At the time, we didn't report anything because we (I) didn't want people to laugh or make jokes about us. However, I want you to know, that what happened to me is the truth before my God in Heaven as my witness. I've never read before about one of these things attacking someone, this concerns me.

[Investigator (DW) Note: Because this original report did not contain information about the event, it was requested that the witness resubmit the report with the details of said event. Here is that report;]

In 1983 I came face to face with the scariest creature Iíve ever seen, and it has haunted my thoughts ever since. It happened in late March of 1983 at Christian Retreat in Bradenton, Florida. I lived here as a kid and use to go to the northwest corner of the property to fish. It was always a place for me to go and sit on the corrugated pipe over the water of the Manatee River, and rest and be at peace. So years later when we came there to visit my Uncle I went back to visit the place I had spent many of days. It was on this visit when my life changed.

I woke Saturday morning while my parents and uncle were still asleep. I decided to dress and go sit on the pipe over looking the Manatee River as I have done in the past. It was about 6:30 am, I wore my Dadís Deputy Sheriff coat because it was cold out. After sitting on the pipe for about 20 minutes, I got up and started walking towards my Uncles apartment, which was about 200 yards away through the woods.

After getting only 20 yards from the pipe I heard something walking up the river bank to my left making a lot of noise while it walked. I stopped in my tracks looking and listening, when all of the sudden out stepped in front of me this incredibly large creature which was about 30 yards away. While it was walking it was looking around and briefly looked my way. Then all the sudden it realized it had seen something and turned to look again in my direction. It stared a few seconds and then started running towards me.

I ran towards the 8 foot barred wire fence behind me, which was about 20 yards away, next to the pipe. I grabbed the top of the fence and climbed over quickly. The barbs tore my pants as I climbed over.

As soon as my feet hit the ground the creature was standing face to face with me about 6 feet away with only the fence between us. The creature was at least 7 Ĺ feet tall, dark brown hair head to toe, dark eyes, approximately 400 to 500 lbs. and very long arms.

We stood there about 3 seconds looking at each other until the creature reached over the fence toward me. That is when I took off running for my life down the fence line, with the creature running along aside of me on the other side of the fence.

To this day all I remember is the snorting and grunting sounds it made while running along side of me. As I was running up the dirt road the creature ran into a thicket and could not continue the chase. I continued running towards my Dadís old workshop on the camp grounds until I was able to jump back over the fence. After crossing the fence I made my way back to my Uncleís apartment very cautiously watching for the creature.

Upon arriving at my Uncleís apartment I told my parents and uncle what had happen. All of us went over to the pipe where I had encountered the creature. We could not find the creature anywhere.

I have never forgotten that day or had been so scared in my life. I really felt like the creature was attacking me for reasons unknown. I didnít know what I had seen and I didnít know about Big Foot/Sasquatch until years later. I never told a soul outside my parents and uncle on the day of what I had seen in fear of being laughed at, until I came across the BFRO where others had come forward with their stories. This prompted me to tell mine.

ALSO NOTICED: Aggressive attacking behavior directed at me, in which I had to run for my life. This is why I need to speak with someone.

OTHER WITNESSES: My mother & father and an uncle will talk about it as well. They were having breakfast.

OTHER STORIES: Not the way it happened to me, but my dad's business associate seen a same type of thing/creature I did about 3 miles from where I did. My dad responded to the call, and said the man was upset at what he had seen. They looked for the creature or signs of it, but could not find anything.

TIME AND CONDITIONS: About 7:00 am The sun had just broke and visual sighting was clear due to clear skies.

ENVIRONMENT: A small pine forest between the river and the playground at Christian Retreat Campgrounds.

Follow-up investigation report by BFRO Investigator Matthew Moneymaker:

On June 6, this witness was interviewed by phone for just under two hours. The witness impressed this investigator as being very believable.

The witness was 17 years old at the time of the event, which took place on or near the grounds of a Christian Retreat Camp Grounds. His father served as security guard for the property.

On the NW corner of the property there is a small river that runs through through a pine forest. He was in sight of his uncle's dwelling. He was fishing around 7:00 AM.

He had ascended a steep riverbank when he heard rustling. He adds, "I heard footfalls in front of me on the trail I was walking. I saw the palm fronds part and out stepped this thing, walking in the same direction as me. I stopped and watched. I am 6' tall and it was a foot and a half taller than me. When it saw me, it turned and ran at me!"

He stated that his only choices were to climb an 8' chain link fence which ran near his path, or jump into the river and swim across it. He chose to run for the fence from 15' away. During that time, the creature closed the 45 yards between them, growling and huffing all the way.

When the witness' feet hit the ground on the other side of the fence, he turned and saw that the creature was just a few feet away on the other side. They momentarily stared at one another. He backed away as it approached the fence. The creature jumped onto, and then reached over the fence at him, huffing and growling. It then lunged at him with its right arm over the fence. At that point the witness ran along the opposite side of the fence in terror, as the creature chased him, growling and snarling from the opposite side. He ran to his uncle's house and beat on the door.

His mother and uncle followed him back toward the fence where they encountered nothing.

His description of the creature is as follows;

- Approximate height was 7.5'
- Weight was described as proportional to its height, ~450 lb.
- Shoulders were very broad.
- Hair color was dark brown, 4"-5" in length, thick and wavy.
- Hair on the head was short. Head was proportional to body.
- Face was human-like with slight snout, protruding nose.
- Teeth were visible during snarls. Hair covered most of face.
- No ears were visible; head shape was roundish, not domed.
- Skin color was dark or black and visible around mouth, nose
- Arm length was proportionally longer than human.
- Hair covered fingers and hands.
- No smell was noticed.
- Arms, legs, and torso were slender, with long, muscular
- Posture was described as hunched over and displayed arm swing while running.
- Described as visibly muscular with no "gut".
- Described as being "really, really mad!"
- The creature made a very loud growl.

The witness stated that the Sheriff's Department got such calls in that area frequently as stated by his father; the local deputy. Additionally, his father's trucking company drivers used to say they saw these creatures frequently.

On 06/15/09, I interviewed the witness' mother for 30 minutes concerning her recollection of this event. Without prompting, she recalled how her son had risen early that morning to go fishing at a familiar location, and how he returned shortly thereafter, pounding on the door and yelling in terror about his experience.

She stated that he has talked about this experience ever after, and had sent them numerous correspondences over the years about similar events witnessed by others. She too had read about such experiences by others which solidified her confidence that her son had indeed had a genuine encounter. She stated that his concern had affected his nurturing of his own children through his parenthood, concerning their exposure to wilderness areas unsupervised. She also related several events that were witnessed by friends of hers (and her husband's) during their time living in that area, and afterward.

Interestingly, the place name along the Mantee River for the uninhabited swampy area right across from this Christian Retreat is called "Devil's Elbow". Supposedly it got its name because it is such a tight bend in the river.

About BFRO Investigator Matthew Moneymaker:

Matthew Moneymaker is originally from the Los Feliz District of Los Angeles, California.

- Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA).

- Founder of the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization,1995.

- Writer and co-producer of the Discovery Channel documentary "Sasquatch: Legend Meets Science", 2001.

- Co-producer of the TV Series "Mysterious Encounters" for the Outdoor Life Network (OLN Channel), 2002.

- Producer of the "2003 International Bigfoot Symposium" (Willow Creek Symposium) DVD set, 2004.

- Co-host of "Finding Bigfoot" on Animal Planet Channel, 2010 - 2017.

- Current Director of the BFRO

  Copyright © 2024