'Bat-like' Flying Humanoid Seen over McCook near Chicago

An artist’s rendition of the creature based on a silhouette provided by one of the witnesses.  (Image credit: Emily Wayland)

An artist’s rendition of the creature based on a silhouette provided by one of the witnesses. (Image credit: Emily Wayland)

Lon Strickler of Phantoms and Monsters recently received two reports submitted by an employee of a trucking company in the Chicago suburb of McCook, who was reporting on behalf of another employee and an outside delivery driver.  The sightings took place six days apart, on the afternoons of August 22nd and August 28th.

I received a telephone call from an employee ('LL') who works at a trucking firm along US.66 (Joliet Rd.) near Rt.171 (1st. Ave) in the McCook suburb of Chicago, IL.

He stated that 2 witnesses, one a truck driver from the firm where he works, and the other who was a parcel delivery driver, had reported seeing a large being flying along the Des Plaines River near the Rt. 171 exit coming off I-55 (Stevenson Expressway).

The first sighting was on Tuesday August 22, 2017 around 4:30 PM CT. The driver told 'LL' what he had witnessed the next day. The flying being was dark brown & black with thick glistening hair on the body. The wings were bat-like, with very long arms and claws attached to the wings. The legs extended from the back and were together. The head was very small, but there was a distinct ridge that ran along the top of the head along the back. The body was quite thin and long, estimated at 6-7 ft in length. The wings were very wide and spanned at least 10 ft. It was flying along the north bank of the river near the exit overpass, flapping its wings in a slow deliberate motion as it moved downstream. The driver was able to watch it for about 20 seconds or so after he slowed down.

The driver was not upset, but surprised by what he witnessed. He said it reminded him of a 'small dragon without a tail', and that this being was larger than any flying creature he had ever seen.

The second sighting was made by a delivery driver, who had witnessed a flying being on Monday August 28th at approximately 1:15 PM CT. The witness saw a large dark winged being fly high over the river from the same vantage point as the first driver. The description was of a 'large man with wings' that sailed high above the exit off-ramp at a height of about 200 ft. The driver observed the being from below and mentioned that it was quickly gliding west, then rapidly ascended into the sky...almost vertically. He told the 'LL' that it was the size of a regular man, but with huge wide wings like that of a bat. There were no further details because of the distance. This witness had mentioned what he had told other employees at his delivery company earlier that day.

According to Strickler, the witnesses found his contact information on the internet, and were not previously aware of other similar sightings.

"It seems that both witnesses were not aware of the sightings in the Chicago metro area," he said. "'LL’ contacted me after he Googled 'large bats in Chicago' and found my information. He mentioned that he would contact me if he hears of further sightings. I requested that he forward my contact information to the 2 drivers...both of whom I'd like to interview."

Strickler also stated that he had previously received an email from a separate witness in the same area, but was unable to follow-up.

"An interesting aspect to these sightings is that I had received a brief report from a woman who had witnessed a flying being at practically the same location as these 2 sightings," Strickler said. "I received the email report from 'JP' on Wednesday August 23rd around 1:00 PM ET. It read:

Last night around 7pm we saw what we thought was the biggest bat we've ever seen. It had at least a 12ft wingspan. Its wings looked like they were attached to hand-like appendages and they were connected from the fingertips to the feet. It was flying above I-55 near 1st Avenue on the north side of the highway. It was brown with a body similar to a beaver or possum. It was about 100 feet above us so we're just guessing at the size. All we know is that it was huge. We thought nothing more of it until this morning when I saw an article about a flying humanoid creature that looks like a bat in the Chicago area. We are now certain that the creature we saw last night is the same one in article. We didn't get photos but if you want more info you can call or text us. JP"

"I made several attempts to contact JP, but I have not received a call-back or text,” Strickler added. “I left another message today, letting her know that there were other potential sightings in the same area. If I receive further details, I will post it here."

McCook is a suburb which lies on the western edge of Chicago, about 15 miles from Lake Michigan.  These sightings took place in an area between the Des Plaines River and the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal, and a large forest preserve exists just a mile northeast.  The sightings reported through the trucking company did occur unusually early compared to others so far, but there have been a few reports from similarly early in the day since the flap started.    

These are the latest in a string of flying humanoid sightings reported in the Chicago area.  Most of the sightings have taken place near the lakefront within a few miles of Lake Michigan, although there are some reports starting to come from the suburbs surrounding Chicago.  The sightings generally take place in the evening or at night, often in or near a park and around water, and witnesses consistently describe a large, bat or bird-like creature with humanoid features; although in one case the creature was reportedly "insect-like." 

To report a sighting, contact Lon Strickler at lonstrickler@phantomsandmonsters.com or call him directly at 410-241-5974; fill out UFO Clearinghouse's contact form to get in touch with Manuel Navarette; or reach out to us directly at The Singular Fortean Society through our contact page.

You can view a timeline of the sightings so far here, and an interactive map here.

Tobias Wayland