Wednesday,Â JuneÂ 27,Â 1973
More meanderings for the Murphysboro Monster
Carbondale Southern Illinoisan
Murphysboro Police are more certain than ever there really is a “monster from the Big Muddy River” near Murphysboro following a second sighting reported Tuesday night.
Police said today they spent several hours tracking the monster with a dog after what they described as an “accurate visual sighting” by two Murphysboro teen-agers Tuesday night.
The description supplied by the two, Randy Creath, 17, and Cheryl Ray, 17, is almost identical to one supplied by two Murphysboro residents who first reported the “seven-foot light-haired muddy monster.” Monday night near the boat launch area in Riverside Park.
Creath and Miss Ray said they were sitting on an outside porch at the Harry Ray home, 37 Westwood Lane, about 10 p.m. Tuesday, when they saw something walking toward the back yard of the home.
Creath told police he stepped into the yard to get a better look while Miss Ray went into the house to turn on a yard light.
Creath told police he saw something “seven or eight feet tall, with light hair, covered with mud, and weighing 300 to 350 pounds.”
The youth told police the figure had a distinct odor of river mud.
Miss Ray said what she saw was a “gigantic figure” of seven to eight feet tall. She also described the figure as covered with “dirty white hair,” and said it was covered with mud.
“It was dark and impossible to make out any facial features. The figure had a head and very large shoulders and very long arms. It stood erect on two legs, like a human,” Miss Ray said.
Miss Ray said the figure made no threatening moves and did not make any sound, but “Just walked away.”
“Scared?” You bet. I was up all night.” Miss Ray said.
Murphysboro Police and Jackson County authorities searched the area and found a series of footprints in the area where the two youths said the figure approached the yard.
Police said river slime was also found near several of the tracks along a grassy slope leading to the Ray home. The Ray home is in the Westwood Hill Subdivision, on high ground just northwest of Riverside Park.
Police said a tracking dog picked up a trail from near the Ray home toward the park, but lost the trail. The dog picked up another scent a short time later, and trailed the scent to a barn. Police said the barn is on the former Ralph Butlar farm. No one lives on the property now, they said.
The dog, owned by Jerry Nellis, refused to enter the barn.
“He has been trained for this type of work and I have never seen him back down from anything before.” Nellis said.
Police checked the interior of the barn, but found nothing.
Police said a child in the Westwood Hills area told his parents he had seen a “white ghost in the yard.” Police said the story was first discounted because of the childs age – but siad [sp] it is possible he did see the same things.
“We believe these people definitely have seen something and it could be something of a dangerous nature. The stories told by the two youths were in detail, and we believe they saw what they said they saw.” Murphysboro Police reported today.