Ocala National Forest, Florida - Marion County

1977 and 1980 - Ocala National Forest region.

Lurking Bigfoot Trick or Treat?

Halloween is still three weeks away but strange creatures are already being seen around Central Florida this week. A 22-year-old hitchhiker reported sighting the legendary Bigfoot, saying the beast was tall, dark and stinky. It lurked in the darkness in a lightly forested area off U.S. 441 half a mile south of Belleview, he said."I've got some information about Bigfoot," the tremulous voice on the telephone said. "I think I just saw it."

Monday morning a security guard for an Apopka nursery told police a 10-foot-tall hairy animal with a chestful of reddish-gray fur and small ears attacked him, ripping off the terrified guard's shirt. Donnie Hall, 27, said he fired several gunshots at the creature in vain. The Bigfoot sighter - a Belleview welder who didn't want his name known - said the beast was brown and black. "I'm six feet tall and it was bigger than me. It smelled horrible, like garbage." Neither of the two creature sightings was substantiated.

A Florida Game and Fresh Water Commission agent who examined tracks at John's Nursery in Apopka said they all appeared to be man-made. Marion County Sheriff Don Moreland chuckled about the Bigfoot report. "I've been in law enforcement for 20 years here and I don't remember any reports of monsters. Flying saucers, yes, but I don't recall any monsters."

Credit Source: Ron Schaffner
© Orlando, Florida: Sentinel Star; Wednesday, October 5, 1977

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