Posted by: Loren Coleman on January 20th, 2007
As I speculated in my first blog about this case on January 18th, when the news broke of a “feral woman” being found (or captured in some accounts), there has got to be a more involved story here. I wondered, could, perhaps, this little girl have been kidnapped by a Nguoi Rung (“Forest Person”) – the unknown hominids who are reported from along the (Kampuchean) Cambodian-Vietnamese border? Indeed, every early indication was that she had lived nocturnally, as reports of the Forest People have noted in the past.
Boing Boing buddy David Pescovitz posted on the story earlier too, and had acknowledged our interest over here. The story is getting weirder, but then some of us knew it would become more so, if we weren’t afraid to look beyond the mainstream headlines.
Now comes word from The Guardian for January 20, 2007, that the “search [is] on for [a] ‘feral man’ as mystery deepens over woman lost in jungle.”
I am not surprised.
Guardian reporter Ian MacKinnon writes, in part:
When they found her last week, her father said, she was “bare-bones skinny” and shaking, scuttling like a monkey along the ground to snatch up grains of rice, her eyes “red like tigers’ eyes”. So when the first pictures of Rochom P’ngieng, the woman supposedly lost in the jungle for 18 years, emerged yesterday showing a calm and apparently healthy young woman rather than an emaciated, feral beast, the mystery surrounding her remarkable story deepened.
Sal Lou, 45, a policeman from a remote village on the Cambodian-Vietnamese border, told a local newspaper on Thursday that his daughter, who disappeared, aged eight, in 1988 while tending a buffalo herd, had mysteriously re-emerged from the Cambodian jungle. She was naked and unable to speak any intelligible language but unquestionably, he insisted, she was his lost daughter Rochom P’ngieng.
Yesterday, however, as further intriguing reports emerged of a mysterious naked man who had been spotted with the woman but ran off when challenged (emphasis added – LC), the family began to close ranks. They have withdrawn permission to take DNA samples to confirm the woman’s identity, and police have thrown a cordon around their isolated home, in an effort to keep at bay curious neighbors and the world’s media.
Other details of various visitors and the global news circus are given in the article, but then it is surprisingly revealed that this woman disappeared along with her younger sister in 1988.
There is no clue to the fate of the second daughter, Chan Boeung, who was six when she disappeared on the same day. Their father said he had believed them both to have been devoured by wild animals in the forest and had long since given them up for dead.
More and more questions are surfacing, of course, and now the hunt is on for this “feral man” who was sighted. And what of the second daughter? The mystery does deepen. But then, the rainforests in this part of the world, as readers of Cryptomundo know, hide many secrets.
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading living cryptozoologist. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013. He returned as an infrequent contributor beginning Halloween week of 2015. Coleman is the founder in 2003, and current director of the International Cryptozoology Museum in Portland, Maine.