English Comp II
November 14, 2010
Imagine you are driving down the road one night, on a deserted road, and all of the sudden you see a huge figure with wings and glowing red eyes. What would you do when it starts to fly at you and keeping up with you as you drive away at over 100 mph? This exact scenario happened to two couples â€œparkingâ€ at the TNT area (the area where explosives were made and stored during WWII) just outside of Point Pleasant, Virginia on the night of November 15, 1966 (Mothman Sightings). One of the first sightings in the Point Pleasant area of the, what would later be named, Mothman, was by two couples. Roger and Linda Scarberry and Steve and Mary Mallette were out late that night doing what many couples at that time did. They went â€œparking.â€ The first thing they saw was the two red glowing eyes. Then, his dark figure came into view. Roger later told the police, â€œIt was shaped like a man, but bigger.â€ Startled, they drove off with the Mothman in hot pursuit. They were going over 100 mph and it was keeping up with them zig-zagging above the car. When they got back to town, they noticed it would not go within the city limits were it was illuminated with street lights (Keel). Many people have seen the Mothman and every account had a similar description of him. People described him as dark in color and large, about seven feet tall. He had a torso of a man with leathery wings that spanned a good ten to twelve feet across. He had no distinct facial features except for his red, glowing eyes. Mothmanmystery.com says that â€œthe eyes in 99% of the sightings are described as being bright-red and hypnotizing.â€ Many people freeze and feel helpless in the Mothmanâ€™s presence (Mothman Sightings). The Mothman is an extraordinary flyer. According to mothmanmystery.com â€œIt was able to appear as if from nowhere and take flight with equal ease.â€ It is also said that it lifts straight up into the air and flies without even flapping its wings (Keel). Marcella Bennett, another witness, said that when it took off it made a noise like â€œa woman screamingâ€ (Mothman Sightings). At first, the Mothman did not have a name. People simply called it either â€œThe Birdâ€ or â€œRed-Eyed Thingâ€ (Point). Once the story broke and spread, an anonymous copy editor gave him his well-known name, Mothman. John Keel, author of The Mothman Prophecies, says the editor â€œgave it a name, spun off from the Batman comic character who was then the subject of a popular TV series.â€ John Keel, a researcher and writer of the paranormal and unexplained, arrived in Point Pleasant in December 1966 after hearing about the encounters with the Mothman. He would visit the town off and on over the next thirteen months. He began to gather reports about the Mothman and soon realized that he was not the only unusual thing occurring there. There were reports of UFOs, strange phone calls, televisions malfunctioning, and, the most unusual, Oriental looking men dressed in all black telling people to keep quiet about their experiences. Keel noticed that many of the eye witnesses to the Mothman and UFOs were experiencing burns on their skin and red, swollen eyes known as â€œeye burnâ€ or klieg conjunctivitis (Day). UFO sightings became a nightly occurrence in Point Pleasant. Keel himself reported seeing them as well. According to (Day), â€œKeel claimed to see so many of these lights that he lost count.â€ When Jeremy Pitchford of Point Pleasant was interviewed, he said that it would not be anything to go outside and see lights in the sky at night at that time. Along with the Mothman and the UFOs, came the men in black. These men started visiting Point Pleasant soon after the stories spread. These men would come dressed in black, ill-fitting, brand new clothing and most often would be driving a black vehicle. They looked oriental with olive skin and had pointed features. Some physical oddities to...
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Keel, John A. The Mothman Prophecies. New York: Tor, 2002. Print.
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Point Pleasant Register. "Couple Sees Man-Sized Bird...Creature...Something." WestVA.Net - West Virginia - WV. 2007. Web. 15 Nov. 2010. <http://westva.net/mothman/1966-11-16.htm>.
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