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Media Article # 355

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

Hoaxes put focus on fantasy, hopes

By Diane Clay
The Oklahoman


For 44 years, residents in northwestern states reported seeing a dark, hairy man more than 6 feet tall, with feet as long as 17 inches. One rancher, Roger Patterson, even claimed to have captured the creature on film in 1967, cementing the belief that Bigfoot was a real link to our Homo sapiens past.

The legend was dashed last year when the family of California man Ray Wallace released a statement from the dying 84-year-old construction company owner who said he had created the first Bigfoot footprints with carved wooden feet. He had reported the find to a local newspaper, and Bigfoot was born.

In the years following the footprint sighting, Wallace and his wife said they dressed in Bigfoot suits to make their own films and recorded Bigfoot noises. Wallace said for Patterson’s film, he told the filmmaker he thought Bigfoot would be near Bluff Creek, Calif., that day, and Patterson should try to film it. Patterson showed up, and so did Bigfoot.

Bibliographical Information:

Staff Writer

BFRO Commentary:

It’s depressing to see sloppy inaccurate reporting such as this continually presented to an unsuspecting public. Almost nothing in this section of the article (which addresses several intentional or unintentional hoaxes) is valid, and it’s obvious the reporter merely recycled tired information without doing an iota of research on her own.

Regarding some of the misstatements in this article:

1. Scientists do not claim the sasquatch is or represents any kind of link in human evolution.

2. Ray Wallace did not release a bigfoot-related deathbed confession.

3. While Ray Wallace did own wooden feet, his carved feet did not match the prints they supposedly created. A simple check of this easily verifiable fact should have laid the whole Wallace controversy to rest. Unfortunately, the mainstream media have proven themselves more interested in sensationalism than truth.

4. Ray Wallace did not go to the press regarding footprint discoveries.

5. Saying “Bigfoot was born” as a result of Ray Wallace’s shenanigans is like saying Nicholas, bishop of Myra, was born with Tim Allen’s “The Santa Clause.” Sasquatch sightings and track finds predated Wallace by many years.

6. Purported connections between Wallace, his wife, and the Patterson/Gimlin film are so utterly fantastic they don’t even merit discussion. The National Enquirer wouldn’t stoop that low.

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