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Posts Tagged ‘werewolves’

MIDogmanRoof

Original artist conception by Linda S. Godfrey, copyright 2018 all rights reserved.

Do dogmen, Bigfoots and other cryptids select and follow certain humans…sometimes for years? One Michigan man wrote me about several dogman encounters that began when he was a child. The biggest question in this case may be: will the sightings someday end? The incidents occurred near Alto and Lowell in Kent County, starting when the man was just 11. These communities are just east of Grand Rapids, but both are near rivers and some small lakes, with numerous wooded areas and a rural feel.
Here is the main story as he wrote it (includes the first one and the latest), edited for length and punctuation:
The First Encounter: 1986
“It was summertime, my childhood had a great group of very normal everyday kids and we played war a lot with each other. Normally about six of us played together through the day with kids rotating back home for chores etc. This particular Saturday we decided to play War behind the Alto Elementary School in the woods and creek area. Anyways I was trying to get in the woods ahead of the other kids before they showed up, to have the advantage. We were using squirt guns and water balloons.
It was like 10 am. As soon as I ran into the woods which I knew very well–this was my stomping grounds literally–I felt uneasy, like I was being watched… not by a friend, either. This feeling lingered and got stronger and stronger like whatever was watching me was moving closer.In this small stretch of woods there was a creek behind me that ran the stretch of the woods. There is a train trestle/ rail road tracks as well.
I was crouched in the tall grass facing the play ground and the road when I heard a splash and very fast movement going behind me. I jumped because I was startled at the height and suddenness of the shadow flashing behind me. When I whipped around I saw a large black/grey, wolflike creature that was running down the creek bed bank alongside the creek behind me. It was shifting from four to two legs and jumped after about three seconds into the brush away from me into the trees. It seemed to have disappeared and I didn’t hear it [any more]. I was a country/woodsy kid. I had no comprehension other than fear for what I saw at that moment.
I ran home which wasn’t far, about 1/4 mile. I didn’t tell anybody what I saw. I was afraid of being teased, or made fun of about it by other people.
When I ran in my house and got to my bedroom, it had only been like a few minutes but I remember thinking it resembled the werewolves in The Howling movie I had seen few years before that. It was, I’d guess, 7-8 ft. tall, and a very muscular  300 lbs? Its head resembled a timber wolf with long canines, long clawed hands, its legs bent backwards like a canine. It glanced back at me. It didn’t want me to see it. It didn’t SMELL AT ALL. It’s face was not feral or ferocious, its eyes were blue. Its presence was powerful, overwhelming.
I didn’t go outta my own yard for several days, which my neighborhood friends thought was odd. I had childhood asthma though, so they assumed that was my issue when they didn’t see me much. I used that excuse when my family wondered why I was so home-bound. I never told a soul what I saw for fear of not being believed. I stayed close to my friends when we played, but I didn’t go close to that creek stretch of woods for 3-4 years. And never alone….
Being an eleven year old kid then, I remember thinking about it quite a bit over the summer but fear of not being believed kept me from telling my friends and family what happened behind the school I attended.  I was glad that middle school was coming for me that fall. I remember my concern that I was going to see this creature elsewhere that we played in the Alto area but I didn’t. Over next few years I rationalized to myself that I didn’t know really what I saw and the wolf-like creature image in my memory was better left there.
The Roof Wolf
“Flash up to 2008. I’m 33 years old. My profession at this time was personal fitness trainer and recreational bodybuilding was my lifestyle. We resided in a quaint house about a mile north of Lowell, MI. It had a very pretty welcoming woodsy area behind our home and we all enjoyed walking the trails in the woods as well.”

“It’s wintertime 2009. It’s a blizzard of snow outside.

All of my family was sound asleep. About 1 am, we wake up to a large thud sound on the roof of our home,  like the weight of a person moving around on the roof of our one story home. There is a lot of scraping noises and a slow, deliberate walking sound.
This goes on for about a minute. My girlfriend, our children and myself are genuinely spooked by this phenomenon happening on the roof. I recall vividly that all of us were utterly silent huddled in the hallway looking intently at each other and up at the ceiling from all of the loud creaking scraping sounds.
I don’t own guns, but I certainly felt it was a good idea to grab my machete that was in the closet. That was when I realized the dread feeling in my gut was the exact same feeling I had years ago with the wolflike creature from my youth. As I struggled with this realization I quietly as possible crept up to the back slider door, machete in hand. I had genuine fear for my girlfriend and children but kept it to myself. They were still huddled and scared, watching me sneak outside. Please know that I’m rather a fearless man for most part.
I ever so quietly sneak outside. It’s snowing hard big flakes outside, and it’s eerily quiet. I’m crouched in my pajamas alongside backside of the house. I’m holding my breath…looking up at the roof, listening. Slowly the clawed hands and timber wolf face with piercing blue eyes peers over roof down at me. It’s the exact same  creature I saw in my youth!
We stare at each other blankly for few seconds. There definitely was a weird sense of recognition between the creature and me ein those moments. I was physically frozen and shocked because the creature was only a good 8 feet or so from me on the roof of my home.
It suddenly leaps off the roof about 30 ft into our backyard. It lands on all four then runs on two legs back into the treeline in what seems like a blur. It’s standing there at treeline looking at me. The  contrast of the snow and it’s size and fur make it easy to spot.I hold still while the wolflike creature and myself stare each other down.
We stare at each other for I’m guessing a minute. In that minute my adrenaline dumped. My fear of this creature turned to anger for it disturbing my life, my family. I made a decision as my anger grew, a reckless one….
The Voice
I yelled a loud angry noise and charged, machete in hand directly at it. Pathetically, it took me like fifteen seconds to run the distance the creature had in like 2 moments. The wolflike creature didn’t budge, move or anything. It just stood there watching me run at it. It appeared mildly amused, its facial expression almost a smirk.
As I got within about 30 feet, in my head loudly I hear audibly… “DON’T!!!”. It’s a deep loud voice. I swear the sheer volume of the voice stopped me dead in my run at the creature. I was instantly physically calm, confused, still afraid of the creature, my fear of it was different for me. It’s presence was still overwhelming to me…
At this moment I realized this creature is intelligent?
I dropped the machete in a physical plea, a gesture to not be harmed. I backed away in slow deliberate steps backwards still facing it.  If it chose to be violent, it could easily kill/ harm me from physical appearance of it.
After few seconds it turned and walked calm about 30 feet into the woods. Its presence faded and it felt like it wasn’t ever there…
I went back to my residence looking over my shoulder whole time. I was so bewildered. It was a very vivid, surreal feeling. My reality had been spun like a top. I go back inside, but I keep looking out the slider towards the woods. I announce “It’s gone, girls!”
My girlfriend (Age 31), her daughter (10), my daughter (11)  walk into the dining room area from the hallway, asking questions in quiet voices. I hug our daughters, telling them it’s late. it was just an animal that ran off. They reluctantly buy it..My girlfriend and I  whisper about what happened earlier.  It comes out that she saw it a month or so before which then clicked to me…She had called me while I was running errands early evening. She sounded upset and scared. I was at [a store] only a mile from our residence. I was home in like 3 minutes. When I got in the house, she said she lied and chalked it off to the neighbor’s big Rottweiler. That was when I admitted my knowledge of the creature… Our daughters slept but we really didn’t.  It was simply crazy, Linda.”
This man had an unusual experience, I’ll say that! But not crazy. I have had other reports of upright canines crawling on roofs and staring at people from the tree lines of their back yards. I’ve also had many, many eyewitnesses report the feeling of receiving a message in their heads that indicates a warning of some type, although the message delivery seems extra vivid in this case. I hope to stay in touch with this witness in case anything else happens, and will update if I hear anything new. I have one more case to present from my recent Michigan batch so keep an eye out here for that.

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Interpretive photo montage by Linda Godfrey

This report came to me some years after the original incident, which occurred in December, 2006. The witness, a professional accountant who asked to remain anonymous, was busy putting  up Christmas decorations around  his mobile home near Entrican, close to the center of Michigan’s Lower Peninsula when an unexpected visitor showed up. And no, it wasn’t Santa.

To give you an idea of this locale, Entrican is a tiny community in the middle of Montcalm County, surrounded by creeks. Indianhead Lake lies a few miles to the northwest, with state game areas close by. It’s a good environment for wildlife. The witness has since moved from the area, but here is his story, edited only for clarity and the inclusion of details added in my subsequent interview with him :

“Ms. Godfrey – You’re going to think I’m crazy. I know I would – I need to tell someone. I was living in a single-wide mobile home in central Montcalm County Michigan. It was near a crossroad called Entrican and I just moved down from Tok, Alaska. 

I was living alone with two cats and I just decorated  for Christmas––putting up the tree, lights, general stuff like that around the house. I had a big picture window looking out to my wooded backyard with a stream about 100 feet from my trailer. You could see the Christmas tree in the window; it was beautiful it looked just like a Christmas card if you could see it from the woods out-in-back.

You have to understand Ms. Godfrey, I deal in facts at my job and I have an MBA in Accounting.  It is difficult for me to relate this to anybody.  I saw  this not only once but three times in that Christmas season.    

It was about 11:00 the first night; I was watching the news so it had to be around that time. The picture window was not draped because of the woods; I liked to see the stream and the forest out the window. It reminded me of my home back in Alaska. The cats were a little antsy that night, darting back-and-forth under the tree, looking out the window. I thought there was a deer or a black bear out in the woods–it happens more times than not Ms. Godfrey; that is one of the reasons why I rented this trailer. I glanced out the window and there it was. It looked like a wolf and it was right outside the picture window, so much so the snout hit the window. It was watching my cats. It didn’t take any notice of me until I walked up to the window.

It was looking at me and I was watching the–for a lack of a better word–wolf. We were staring at each other for about five minutes. It had a canine appearance but was bigger than any dog or wolf I have ever seen. Do you know that 80s movie, ‘The Howling?’ It looked in the manner of that, if I had to say. There was one difference, though; it did not seem evil or menacing. I’m very confident in saying that it looked like every other animal in the forests. It had a very domestic dog-like appearance. It had dark, matted fur and those eyes Ms. Godfrey; I felt those eyes had lucid thought behind them.

It didn’t seem malicious and the cats were right by me looking at it. The cats sensed it out in the woods before I saw it.  The cats didn’t ‘puff up’ so I don’t think it frightened them, but they knew something wasn’t quite right. 

Then the strangest thing happened; it turned around and walked on two legs back to the woods. It was up on its hind legs and didn’t drop on all fours. The first thing I thought was [that it must be] kids. I started to think better of it and it was annoying not to know about what I just witnessed. You know what I am talking about, the little thing in the back of your mind saying ‘Hold on, what just happened’?

Well Ms. Godfrey, I was not going to get any sleep that night until I found out more. I got dressed, put on my coat and got the flashlight.  There was a moon out and I could see everything till I got to the woods. There was paw prints from the stream to the trailer and back to the stream again. These were huge paw prints not like any wolf or dog and they were only two sets of them, not four. Didn’t think about photographing the paw prints or measuring them. They were coming from the stream.

I walked up to the picture window; the paw prints stopped and I looked up to the window. My cats were watching me from inside the trailer and I notice the snout print on the window. It dawned on me that I was looking up to see the snout print. There is a dip in my back yard and the trailer was a bit higher than usual. I’m 6’4” and I still had to look up to see the print when I was right outside the window. It was about 7 to 7 ½ feet from the ground to the snout print. It was eerie to know that there was something not quite right out in the woods. 

The Buck–and the Wolf–Stops Here

It happened again [twice] about two weeks later. The only thing I could think: It was using the stream and the Flat River for a road, and it was attracted to the Christmas lights in my picture window. It only pressed its snout against he window the first time. The other times, it stopped about 15-20 feet from the trailer, a good 70-75 feet from the woods. There was snow on the ground and it was a crisp, clear winter’s night. All three times.

All three times the Christmas lights were on, blinking slowly.

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Interpretive photo montage by Linda S. Godfrey

Here is something else to think of Ms. Godfrey; about two, maybe three hundred yards down Grow Road is the Buck Stop Lure Company. Basically they sell deer pee in bottles. Maybe that is why it was around Entrican. I still don’t know what I seen that Christmas season but it was peculiar to say the least.  I wondered what it was. I didn’t feel afraid. It bothers me, not that I saw something, but what it was. That is what annoys me to no end.”

Of course I did not think this man was crazy. I’ve heard too many similar stories.

I scarcely need to mention that this site lay deep within the heart of known Michigan Dogman territory. I did tell the witness there have been many other instances of upright canines (and Bigfoot!) peeping in windows of houses, sometimes even rattling the door knob or smashing against an outside wall. It also does happen that occasionally a Dogman will make multiple visits to a particular home. Adding strong lights to a lawn often helps, but in this case the creature seemed attracted to the colored, blinking lights.

And even though it seemed like it intended no harm, it may also have been interested in the cats. Or who knows, perhaps the nearby source of deer pee did have something to do with it.

Equally interesting is why the creature visited 3 times, then stopped (as far as the eyewitness knew). I also can’t help but wonder if the mobile home’s subsequent owners were visited, too.

As the song goes and this eyewitness found out, there’s no place like home for the holidays.

 

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Image by Linda Godfrey copyright 2017 all rights reserved

About eight years ago I did something I always try very hard not to do: I lost a file on a possible upright canine case alleging there were werewolves roaming the sewers of Minot, North Dakota. I remember having been intrigued by the story and setting my printout of the report aside  to investigate further. Much to my chagrin, it then disappeared. It had somehow slipped between two file folders, but I only just discovered that the other day while arranging my office after a recent move. I was delighted to find it, and decided it was about time I posted the short account  in case someone else might know more.

I’d received the email February 24, 2008, from a man who claimed to be a law enforcement agent in North Dakota, and who wanted to stay anonymous for fear of affecting his employment. The man I’ll call Pete said he’d been talking to an associate who told him about a recent interview he’d had with a burglary suspect. The associate said the suspect asked him if he had heard about the “werewolves” in Minot.

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Credit: City of Minot, by Bobak Ha’Eri, photo via Wikimedia Commons

“The guy [burglar] went on to explain,” said Pete, “that he and a friend of his were fooling around by a large culvert down by the river. (This particular culvert is about six feet across, easy for a man to walk in. It is inside the city of Minot and leads right out to the bank of the river.) The suspect said that he and his friend had seen something in the shadows that was about seven feet tall. He told my friend that they had also stepped on what they thought was a body while they were walking in the culvert. He stated that he and his friend had run out of there.

“The suspect had said that werewolves were living in the sewer system. While this sounds, of course, crazy…I have been noticing a few things since hearing the story: The city police department has had a couple of calls within the past couple of months concerning manhole covers being displaced, or off of manholes around town. Normally I wouldn’t think twice about those types of calls, but it now strikes me as odd.”

Pete said he put the information in the back of his mind until he heard me on the Coast to Coast AM radio show and suddenly wondered if there might be more to it. I’ve been trying to reach him, in return, but to no avail. I did confirm that he was indeed a law enforcement officer at the time and place he stated. But I like to have a bit more info when I post a case, especially when it’s a third-hand report and the original source is an alleged burglar. Since I’ve mentioned the report briefly in a book and on some radio shows, however, I decided to offer the information I have. I’ll be sure to update here if I do finally reach the original writer or find other sources.

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Manhole Steps, by Silenzio76, photo via Wikimedia Commons

Personally, I’ve never been able to shake that mental image of two criminals stumbling over a dead body as they flee the culvert after spotting a seven-plus-feet-tall “something” watching them from the shadows. And Minot may not be the only place where people should take extra care around city water and drainage systems. In “Monsters Among Us” I shared the story of a brother and sister who claim to have seen something similar in a Los Angeles suburb. And Minot does boast a river and lies near several wildlife refuges so the habitat is certainly there.

As I said, I’ll keep you posted. In the meantime I wouldn’t blame anyone for deciding to give manhole covers a wider berth–just to be on the safe side.

 

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I’m always saying I don’t believe in TRADITIONAL werewolves, but almost every culture worldwide has its own, unique version of werewolves or something similar. That fact requires me to define “traditional.” What I usually mean by that are those moonstruck, hairy creatures  whose attributes are derived mainly from old European legends and Hollywood movies. But even these examples may vary. When I come across a legend with some interesting features, then, I like to note it for future reference.

Today while I was looking for something else, I happened across this charming artwork depicting a priest from Ulster named Gerald and his encounter with a couple of upright werewolves. The illustrations look a lot like many drawings made by modern day eyewitnesses and artists. The creatures appear completely canine, for instance, and they can walk either on all fours or upright. Muzzles, pointed ears and toe-pad-walking complete the pictures.

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(image from Creative Commons O, Europeana Collection, from the British Library Royal Collection, c. 1196-1223)

Their behavior, however, is the big surprise here.The story is written in Latin, but as I understand it from various translations, Gerald of Ulster was camping in the woods sometime around the year 1200 when he was approached by a large werewolf.

Short version: The creature begged Gerald to come with him and minister last rites to his mate. It seems they hadn’t always been werewolves. Their village had been more or less cursed to give up one couple every seven years to wander as Lycans, and it had been this pair’s turn to serve. They hadn’t yet completed their obligation when the missus fell ill. Gerald succeeded in tearing part of her fur away to reveal the shriveled elderly woman inside, and she was then able to eat a consecrated wafer. Happy ending.

There isn’t much more to the story. I simply thought it appropriate to begin the New Year with a tale from the era that still informs today’s lore. But I saw something both touching and brave about Gerald’s willingness to follow the wolfman into the woods and in the wolf couple’s determination to keep their faith. Most contemporary reports would have the witness fleeing the scene in terror (as I would be doing) while the wolf creature gave chase and then growled off into the night. That’s probably much closer to reality. But reality bites.

And I suspect they just don’t make werewolves like they used to.

Enjoy the art, anyway, and Happy 2017!

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This beauty, Ken Gerhard’s Menagerie of Mysterious Beasts, recently arrived in my mailbox and will be my first big read of the new year! Can’t wait to dig into what looks like a thorough compendium of the wild world of weird creatures. Happy 2017 to all!

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photo from Lincoln County Sheriff’s Dept.

This time of year seems to be when reporters go looking for oddities — or oddities come looking for them. Such seemed the case yesterday when a bold young black bear was seen begging bipedally from cars passing on a highway near Gleason. It was eventually captured and taken to a wildlife refuge. It seemed utterly unafraid of humans, leading to speculation it was either a pet -YIKES – or someone had been feeding it in a habituation situation.

When Hannity Show Came to Bray Road

There’s also a short compilation of Wisconsin beasties in a 3-year old article in Whoo New online blog, including the Beast of Bray Road, Muskego’s Haunchies and others. I’ve had a few people ask where to see the Sean Hannity episode on The Beast (one of the best short documentaries on the subject, I think) and the blog included this handy link.

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A certain weird hayfield in SE Wisconsin threads its way throughout the pages of my latest book, Monsters Among Us; an Exploration of Otherwordly Bigfoots, Wolfmen, Portals, Phantoms, and Odd Phenomena. Today I spent a few hours threading my own way through the weedy tree lines of that field with its owner, “Roy Smith,” who decided he would like to reveal his actual name and say a bit on camera. I’ll refer to him as Smith here, however, since that is the name used in the book. My video of his introduction may be found below, but first here’s an important postscript on one strange phenomenon in Monsters Among Us.

(All rights reserved on photos and video; may not be posted or printed elsewhere without written permission.)

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On April 29, 2015, one of Smith’s trail cameras caught a black figure silhouetted against the growing green field. At first we thought it was a blackbird or crow, but when we zoomed in (zoom view shown above), it looked more like the head, back and arm of some large animal presumably crouched in the hay. There were two other partial shots of it taken within one second that showed very fast progression across the screen from left to right.

I trudged out to what we judged to be the spot where this happened one dewy morning not long after, wearing a coat with hood, and Smith took photos from where the trail cam had been set up. We ended up concluding, based on comparison to trees in the background and to the original photo, that it was at least as big as me (five foot one) and much larger than a bird would have been from that distance.

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The creature’s shape also seemed to match the stance I took in my photo: crouched over, one arm reaching forward. I wasn’t able to crouch as well, but my lower legs were also hidden by the grass. It would have been heading straight for the treeline area where Smith had been noticing various wildlife carcasses, mostly deer, that displayed oddly munched and crunched areas or were carried off entirely by unknown predators.

Return of the Creature

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Skip ahead one year or so to early May, 2016, and a similar type of creature showed up on another trail cam in the same field, heading in exactly the same direction. It looked black, furry, and seemed to be in a kneeling position. There was an evident shadow around it in the grass.Unfortunately, book production was already well underway so there was no way to add it. But we still set up a comparison shot with Smith trudging out to the field this time.

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The 6-foot 3-inch tall Smith (left, in baseball cap) appeared almost the same height as the creature as he knelt in the hay, but only half as wide! Compare the sizes of Smith and the creature compared to the round-shaped tree at the right. Whatever this black thing is, it’s roughly human-sized or larger. Just one more mystery at this field of bad dreams.

Meet “Roy Smith,” otherwise known as Lee Hampel, a retired math and physics teacher from Illinois, and owner of the mysterious field featured in Monsters Among Us. Hampel had chosen that pseudonym himself, but has since decided to go public. I always feel the witnesses should be the ones to choose in this matter, and honor Hampel’s choice by posting this video taken Oct. 25, 2016 on site in the field.

 

 

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