Author’s note: This is the second of a two-part story chronicling Ben and Marli’s Bigfoot encounter near Pleasant Hill, Mo. In part one, a dark, hulking creature came out of the woods at Pleasant Hill Lake and approached Ben’s truck.
The thing walked within 20 feet from the truck and neither Ben nor Marli could hear it in the gravel.
“You could have heard a pin drop. There was no crunching of any gravel,” Marli said. “The window was cracked and I didn’t notice any breathing, but I was so petrified. It was so bizarre. I’ve never felt like that and I don’t ever want to feel like that again.”
As the creature came closer, Ben noticed it seemed to be leaning forward as it walked.
“It walked right past us,” Ben said. “As it was walking up it had this really strange stride. Not really hunched over. It had a real strong powerful stride to it.”
As it stepped even with the cab of the truck, the two froze in fear.
“The shoulders got real broad,” Ben said. “And the whole upper body actually turned. I knew whatever it was stared right at me as it walked by.”
Ben gauges the creature’s height somewhere between 6’2” and 6’5”.
“It walked by and as it got to the other road it stopped,” he said. “There’s like a hill that runs down the road and it was standing next to the hill. She couldn’t see it. I could only see part of it.”
As Ben stared at the thing, only seeing its head and shoulders against the hill, he knew they had to go.
“At that point, there was no question. We were leaving,” he said. “As I started the truck and I hit my break lights that head went up the hill and was gone.”
Ben and Marli are convinced they saw Bigfoot that night and it’s changed their lives.
“I didn’t believe in it,” Ben said. “I thought it was made up stuff. I don’t know if I’ll ever be the same. When I go out at night now I always have the lights on in front of the house and go right for my truck. I don’t want to see it again.”
Marli’s house is at the edge of Pleasant Hill, a tree line and fields sit across the road from her property.
“I’ve never been afraid of the dark, but I won’t even go outside after dark now. I just won’t,” she said. “I make sure the blinds are completely shut. I was completely freaked out. I never believed in (Bigfoot). I thought it was a hoax. Then after we saw what we saw I got on the Internet and started reading it. These people were saying the same exact thing I just saw. I don’t know if I’ll ever be the same after this. Even thinking about it sends chills up my spine.”
Marli won’t stay in her house alone after dark and disturbing dreams about Bigfoot trouble her nights. The encounter has her second-guessing what she allows her children to do.
“I haven’t talked with them about it,” she said. “I don’t like them going out after dark now. I don’t like it at all. I can’t keep them from doing it because they’ll go what’s up. But as far as going across the street in those fields and the woods; I wont’ let them go.”
Ben and Marli were so troubled by their encounter, they contacted Bigfoot researcher Randy Harrington of Leavenworth, Kan.
“They seem believable,” Harrington said. “We’re going to go up and check out the area. All we can do is go through the area and look for the signs. As far as their story, it’s as believable as anyone’s story I’ve heard or interviewed.”
The silence of the creature as it walked past Ben and Marli is common, Harrington said.
“You and I are used to hearing people walk across gravel with hard-soled shoes,” Harrington said. “If they weren’t wearing shoes you might not hear anything. How can it remain so hidden from so many smart people? They’ve got to be silent.”
The area around Pleasant Hill has had its number of Bigfoot reports over the years.
“It’s a good area,” Harrington said. “You’ve got some decent wooded areas there that would possibly harbor a small population of that creature.”
Although both Ben and Marli said they would never go back to that spot, on March 26 they did.
“When we went back out there and saw where it took place I feel better about it,” Marli said. “Although it rained that Monday, you can definitely tell someone was walking. There were broken branches. There was the first part of the footprints. You could tell there were three toes in the front. On one of the trees the bark had been peeled away and was laying right there. I’ll never say I don’t believe in anything again.”
Copyright 2009 by Jason Offutt
Got a scary story? Ever played with a Ouija board, heard voices, seen a ghost, UFO or a creature you couldn’t identify? Let Jason know about it: Jason Offutt c/o The Examiner, 410 S. Liberty, Independence, Mo. 64050, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Your story might make an upcoming installment of “From the Shadows.”
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