Posted by: Craig Woolheater on November 15th, 2016
Today marks the 50th anniversary of the Scarberry/Mallette Mothman sighting, which was the start of the Mothman phenomena and ending with the collapse of the Silver Bridge thirteen months later.
Date: November 15 1966 Time: midnight
Two young married couples, Steve Mallette, Mary Mallette and Roger and Linda Scarberry on a cold, clear and crisp night were out on a lark in the desolate TNT area, located on the Ohio River off Route 62 about six miles north of town. In 1966 was a favorite with couples who liked to park and neck. On this night they were looking for friends and “chasing parkers,” as Linda Scarberry related later. They made the rounds through the ghostly igloos without success and headed back to the unlocked gate at the old generator plant. They went over a small rise in the road, and the car headlights caught something that made Roger slam on the brakes. Illuminated in front of them was a slender but muscular man-like creature, six to seven feet tall, with huge round red eyes, wings, and large hands. It had no definable head. The circular eyes looked more like they sprouted from the shoulders. The eyes about 2 inches in diameter and about six to eight inches apart, stared at them with hypnotic intensity. The creature was gray, or as Linda described much later, flesh colored with ashen wings. One of its wings appeared to be caught in a guide wire near the road, and it pulled at the wing with its hands. Later, Linda thought the creature was frightened, but in the heat of the moment it was the occupants of the car who erupted in fear and panic. While they screamed, the creature wiggled its wing free and wobbled with an odd shuffling gait into the generator plant through an open, broken door.
Eyewitness sketch of the Mothman by Roger Scarberry
Roger hit the gas and tore out of the gate onto the road, heading for Route 62 back to town. Suddenly, the creature was in sight again, standing on a little hill, as though it had instantly teleported itself. The car headlights struck it again, and it spread its ten foot wings and took off straight into the air. It began following the car, matching its speed. Roger pressed the gas pedal down harder and harder until they were flying along Route 62 at 100 to 105 miles per hour. The creature effortlessly kept up, banging down on the roof of the car two or three times as they fled. It made a high-pitched squeaking noise like a mouse. Somehow they careened down the road and its dangerous curves without mishap. As they grew closer to the bright night lights of town, the creature peeled off. They saw it once again crouched on the Ohio River floodwall, its legs and wings tucked in. Roger drove to the Dairyland and they tried to calm down and decided what to do. They could not agree on whether or not to report the creature to police and they argued over whether or not they would be labeled crazy or drunk or both. A decision was made to return to the TNT area, but partway back they decided against it. When they turned back around they saw the body of a large dead dog by the side of the road. According to one of the witnesses, the winged creature jumped out at them as they passed the dog, went over the top of the car, and went through the field on the other side.
Back in town, the couples decided to notify the police and told their story to Deputy Millard Halstead. Seeing their genuine fright, Halstead took them seriously. He got in his patrol car and the two vehicles went back to the TNT area. The body of the dog was missing. There was no sign of the red-eyed monster, but when Millard turned on his police radio a strange garbled sound screeched out at high volume, as though someone were playing a tape recorder at fast-forward speed.
Source: John A. Keel
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Co-founder of Cryptomundo in 2005. I have appeared in or contributed to the following TV programs, documentaries and films: OLN's Mysterious Encounters: "Caddo Critter", Southern Fried Bigfoot, Travel Channel's Weird Travels: "Bigfoot", History Channel's MonsterQuest: "Swamp Stalker", The Wild Man of the Navidad, Destination America's Monsters and Mysteries in America: Texas Terror - Lake Worth Monster, Animal Planet's Finding Bigfoot: Return to Boggy Creek and Beast of the Bayou.