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"The Minerva Monster"
Stark County, Ohio - Paris Township

In August 1978, hunters with high-powered rifles, hunting dogs and lots of beer stalked a creature in a wooded area off U.S. 30 behind the home of a Paris Township family.

The beast was reported to be more than 6 feet tall and 300 pounds, covered in dark, matted hair. It was said to have shown up often at the home of Herbert and Evelyn Cayton -- so often that their daughter considered it a pet.

One night, it stood at their kitchen window, directly under a security light. Stark County deputies who investigated the sightings said they were not a hoax. Years later, they said they could still not identify the hair samples. The animal, tagged the Minerva Monster was never found.

© From the files of Ron Schaffner, 1978