Posted by: Loren Coleman on September 28th, 2010
First published September 22, 2010; updated September 28, 2010, with a photo provided by her daughter…
Bigfoot researcher Laurelyn Fanshier, who had suffered with cancer for the last few months, at the Cimmaron Pointe Care Center in Mannford, Oklahoma, died this morning, Wednesday, September 22, 2010.
The woods of Oklahoma whisper a little quieter today, that’s for certain.
On Laurelyn Fanshier’s MySpace page, she had this simple message posted there for years: “The Truth Is Out There.”
She also wrote of “WHO I’D LIKE TO MEET.” She listed:
“MYSPACE FRIENDS, PEOPLE WHO ENJOY THE SEARCH FOR BIGFOOT, AND OTHERS INTERESTED IN THEIR FAMILY HISTORY. SEAN CONNERY, LOREN COLEMAN.”
I figure any list where I was mentioned with Bigfoot and Sean Connery was pretty good, and Laurelyn honored me with that listing.
Laurelyn Fanshier was a Bigfooter from Tulsa, Oklahoma, whom I never got to meet. But her name was extremely familiar in Bigfoot circles, due to her well-stated, strong opinions carried online for decades, on Bigfoot forums and yahoogroups.
In 2002, for example, on the Bigfoot list, Fanshier was talking (below) about the “emotional part” of the quest for Bigfoot:
“I think that is the motivation behind any Bigfooter’s dedication. I guess you could say that education and experience are ‘learned behavior’ but emotion is ‘instinctive.’ And Bigfooters are an emotional bunch.”
She never held back in what she thought. Later in 2002, talking about Ray Wallace, Laurelyn Fanshier wrote:
“This news article circulating about Ray Wallace explains itself. It says ‘he was a big kid all his life.’ Yes, I can see that. He was wanting attention and he got more than he bargained for. He made the original foot prints? Okay, so did he tramp all over Oregon, Washington, California, Ohio, Pennyslvania, Texas, Oklahoma, Florida …. all these years?
“I was under the impression that these later years he was physically unable to do all this. I think in the beginning, he was afraid his employees would be scared off because of the footprints and other things going on, so he started the story to explain away the footprints. Then it got to be fun. Silly old man. Too bad the people who write news articles are the same type.”
Fanshier grew up in Canute, Oklahoma, and after graduating from college worked with the State of Oklahoma’s Soil Conservation Service from 1971 to 1996.
Therefore, it is with some sadness that I have to report what is being reported today by Forest Giant list moderator Dennis Fenton that she has died. Her daugther Elyn Hamilton told me earlier that Laurelyn had suffered problems breathing at 4:30 am this morning, and passed away at 9:35 am, local time.
Unfortunately, over a year and half ago, Laurelyn Fanshier was found to have cancer. The recent news was that it had settled in her brain and the end was near.
My deepest empathy and sympathy goes out to her daughter Elyn Hamilton, the rest of the Fanshier family and her friends. My thoughts are with all of them.
Her daughter expressed the following last July, to folks here:
She loved being on this board, and spent HOURS reading your posts and other posts on other boards. We always encouraged her to write a book about her research, but she didn’t feel she was qualified. Thank you for your prayers and support, and for being her friends. ~ ELYN HAMILTON
Take care Laurelyn Fanshier, as you undertaken the ultimate search.
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading. 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.