Werewolf, skin walker, shape shifter or man dog, throughout the years these terms have been used to describe a number of sightings of an unidentified figure. Believed to be half man and half wolf, werewolves have shown up in tales and legends throughout American history. Some of the most chilling first hand experiences come from Ohio, Wisconsin, New Mexico, and Texas. Perhaps one of the most famous encounters occurred in Greggton Texas in the late 1950’s. Mrs. Delburt Gregg stated that while sleeping one night, having left the bedroom window open, she awoke to scratching on the window screen beside her bed. Peering out the window into the thick black darkness, she could see nothing, until a flash of lightning from an approaching storm illuminated a hairy figure with yellow eyes glaring back at her.
In her statement, she went on to say that the animal darted off into the bushes in her yard. Mrs.Gregg then retrieved a flashlight and shown it directly at the brush where the animal had sought cover. What happened next shocked her beyond belief. She waited anxiously for the creature to emerge from the brush. And what finally did exit the bushes, to her surprise was no wolf at all, but the tall dark figure of a man as he hurried off down the road.
In Whitewater New Mexico, 1970. A group of teenagers reported seeing a fast moving figure along the side of the road. Believed at first to be a prank, they got close enough to it in order to make out exactly who it was. After nearing the creature, the boys quickly realized that this was no schoolmate. They sped off down the road, and the creature pursued. One of the teens drew a shotgun from beneath his seat and shot at the animal. In all four of their statements, they all recounted that the beast had been hit, as it stopped advancing. But none had been brave enough to go back an look.
Ohio, 1972, between the months of July and October, several different residents throughout the state reported seeing tall hairy figures. In each account, the similarities were astounding. Each stated that the creature was abnormally tall, between 6 to 8 feet in height. And had wolf or dog like features, but carried itself upright like a man. Bray Road, near Delevan Wisconsin, has played host to many a sighting of these types of creatures. From 1936 to as recent as 1991, many detailed encounters have been reported as having taken place in the more rural farming areas of this same road. A publication in the Royal society of medicine in 1964 offers possible explanation of such sightings. British neurologist L. Illis wrote that a rare genetic disease known as Porphyria may be to blame.
Symptoms include brown skin pigmentation of the face, as well as destruction of facial tissue and fingers. Lesions are also a common manifestation of this disorder. Due to the pigmentation deficiencies, people suffering from this disease find themselves highly over sensitive to light, and find it easier and more comfortable in their situation to go about what most of us would consider normal daily activities, at night.
The mystery for now remains unsolved as to what these people truly did encounter on these fateful evenings. Not unlike the Bigfoots, UFO’s and the Loch Ness monsters of the world, the sightings continue still. And sadly, without more concrete evidence, we may never really know.