‘Bear Attack’ Bogus?

(Campbell County, Tennessee)
Anyone that loves a great popcorn flick will recognize these classic lines from the 1975 blockbuster film, ‘Jaws’
Mayor Vaughn: [to reporter] ” I’m pleased and happy to repeat the news that we have, in fact, caught and killed a large predator that supposedly injured some bathers. But, as you see, it’s a beautiful day…   …. and people are having a wonderful time.”

The residents of Campbell County, Tennessee have also been given an all clear to adventure back into the woods, but is it really safe to do so? Officials at the Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency, or TWRA, have concluded their preliminary investigation into a late-night attack on a local man, and have announced that the attack was not made by a bear, as first feared. But the mystery remains: What did Michael Savage encounter on that deserted country road?

TWRA representative, Matthew Cameron said on Monday, “We want the residents of Campbell County to feel safe and to know that there’s not a vicious bear on the loose in the area” However, officials added that they are still investigating the frightening incident that occurred on his dark and lonely rural route in the early morning hours of September 4th.

Sometime between 5am to 6am, Michael Savage, 27, of Lafollette, was walking home alone after an evening of visiting with friends. Somewhere along the way he was ambushed and attacked by what he claims was “a large animal with very coarse dark hair”. He sustained severe and significant injuries, but somehow managed to walk several miles further to his home. He was later admitted to University of Tennessee Medical Center, where a spokesperson later reported him to be resting in stable condition.

At first response, officials followed protocol for a bear attack and set traps in place. Residents and visitors were warned to take safety precautions when venturing into the woods. But in a sudden and complete about-face, the TWRA stated that Savage’s wounds didn’t show the classic traces of an animal attack. At a press conference on Monday, TWRA representatives said photographs of the injuries were sent to an ‘agency’ in the Western U.S. to determine if the wounds could be from a large, predacious animal. The TWRA spokesman said “They looked at them and concluded they are not from a bear”, but he would not comment further on what he thought really happened to Savage.

Officials will keep the bear-trap posted near the location of the incident until Friday, and say they expect to remove it then, empty.

This region of eastern Tennessee is a high-density area for Bigfoot sightings, and has a long history of unresolved cases of cryptozoological nature. So –  is it really safe to go back into the dark woods of rural Tennessee?

carolyn westberg


Fascinated by ancient Mediterranean cultures; set on a visit to the Li Galli archipelago. Tries to grow milkweed for migrating Monarch butterflies; favorite bird belongs to the corvid family. Put-off by cruelty, greed, and waste; active-status, militant animal-hugger, people-hugger, tree-hugger. Married for a good, long time; somebody’s proud mother. Trusts in Science before scientists; breast cancer Survivor – Shout-out! Somewhat old & worn out; hanging in there! Wants Good to succeed; believes in one spiritual presence of positive power in our Universe.

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