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The first horrifying encounter with the Mothman first began in a small town near Clendin, West Virginia in 1966. A small group of men were in the local cemetery one November night digging a grave when they suddenly saw a large human-shaped creature with wings and large red glowing eyes glide over their heads. The terrified men ran scattered out of the cemetery to tell their loved ones and community of what horrifying night they had experienced. This would be one of many mysterious appearances of the red-eye glowing, man-moth like flying creature that would go on to terrify the towns of West Virginia.

Just a few days after, the strange creature struck again. On November 15 that same year two young couples from a small town called Point Pleasant alerted the authorities that they had witnessed a “large flying man with ten-foot wings” whose eyes “glowed red” when the car’s headlights were on it. They also told the police that the creature proceeded to follow them through an area known as “the TNT area”, this area was a former munitions plant during World War 2. The creature was perhaps attracted to their car’s headlights that’s why it pursued them, or perhaps it was thirsty for human blood.

The creature’s appearance before the young couples was the first newspaper report published in the Point Pleasant Registrar titled “Couples See Man-Sized Bird… Creature…Something” This sent West Virginia citizens in a frenzy. New appearances of the Mothman started appearing all over the region from barking dogs to contractors and even firemen reported sightings of a large flying man-like creature with glowing red eyes. The people were terrified and didn’t know what to do; people and pets were going missing, it was not safe to go outside. Scientists said the creature was a sandhill crane that had wandered off its natural habitat but could a simple crane cause so much havoc and instill fear amongst such a large populace. This had to be the work of something else; something out of this world, unexplained, something paranormal.

The Mothman sightings had died down in the next few years until  1975 when an author by the name of John Keel linked supernatural events and other phenomena with the Mothman as well as UFO reports in his book ‘The Mothman Prophecies’. Keel even linked the collapse of the silver bridge on December 15, 1967, which killed 46 people to the Mothman. Others believe the Mothman is a mutation resulting from the Spanish flu, or the three-mile island nuclear accident.

Although no one knows what the Mothman really is; an alien, a mutation, or even a vision of the embodiment of humanity’s greatest fears; a 12-foot statue of Mothman can still be seen in point peasant, West Virginia. A festival takes place once a year in September in commemoration of the Mothman sightings that have taken place every year.