Husband Corroborates Wife's Story of 'Prehistoric Bird' in Gary, Indiana with Two Sightings of His Own


The Singular Fortean Society was forwarded an email received by investigator Lon Strickler on January 24th from the husband of a witness in Gary, Indiana who had recently reported a sighting of a “big, grayish prehistoric bird” that occurred in the city back in 2016.

The husband had actually had two sightings himself dating from 2015 and 2016.

According to the email:

On a clear early morning around 6 a.m. in August of 2015 I was returning home from Michigan City, Indiana, traveling down interstate 80/94 westbound to the Broadway exit south in Gary. as I got off the exit and approached Broadway I clearly saw what appeared to be a prehistoric looking creature flying over and around the area surrounding the exit, as I drove over the overpass the creature flew southeast behind a gas station into a wooded area. When I arrived home I googled prehistoric birds and the picture of a pterodactyl was exactly what I saw. [Then in August of 2016] I was heading to work going north on Martin Luther King Drive in Gary about a 1/4 mile from interstate 80/94, again early morning. I saw the same prehistoric looking creature, reached for my phone to take a picture, but it swooped down and disappeared into a wooded area west of Martin Luther King Drive.

The Singular Fortean Society was able to contact the man via telephone regarding his experiences.

He described how a massive shadow—30 to 40 yards long—first alerted him to the presence of something unusual.

He was in his vehicle when sometime between 5:30-6 a.m. he saw a “dark, grayish” creature with “smooth, leathery skin” swoop down over the cars and trucks on the highway. He said the winged being looked like a “prehistoric bird,” complete with a pointed crest on its head, and he approximated its wingspan at around 40’.

“The wings weren’t flapping,” he said. “It was like it was just gliding.”

Some pterosaurs were of a size unheard of in modern avian species, with the North American Quetzalcoatlus being the largest known to science, having a wingspan in excess of 30’.

Furthermore, many pterosaurs were ‘feathered’ with hair-like filaments known as pycnofibers, which covered their bodies and part of their wings—something that might not be easily discernible to a witness seeing one in flight.

The creature was about 20-30’ off of the ground, he estimated; close enough that he could see its “huge, egg-shaped eyes.” The eyes were a consistent color throughout, with no visible iris or pupil, and were a bright shade of greenish yellow, he said.

“At that point I was freaked out about how close it was to me, and how large it was,” he admitted.

No other drivers seemed to react to the creature, according to the man.

“Nobody else seemed to notice it but me,” he said.

After he returned home he searched the internet for images of prehistoric birds resembling what he had seen, and it was there that he found a picture of a pterodactyl that he said matched the creature he encountered.

“It was the first picture that came up,” he said. “And I said ‘That’s it! That’s what I saw!’”

He told his wife of his sighting, but it wasn’t until she had her own encounter that she eventually believed him.

And, just a few weeks after her sighting in the early summer of 2016, he had his second sighting in the same area—an encounter that was very similar to his first.

In both instances the creature’s appearance was the same, and both encounters ended when the creature flew into a nearby wooded area and disappeared.

Both he and his wife’s sightings were all in the same general area, and their descriptions of the creature are consistent with each other.

When asked, he wasn’t sure what to make of the sightings, other than that they weren’t of any ordinary animal.

“I have no clue on [the creature’s] origin or anything,” he said. “I know what I saw. I do know that.”

The location of these sightings is in the middle of Gary, Indiana, about four miles south of Lake Michigan, between the Grand Calumet and Little Calumet rivers. The North Gleason Park Pavilion—through which the Little Calumet River flows—and South Gleason Golf Course provide a modicum of natural cover for animals in the area, and are only around a thousand feet south of where the sighting took place.

Two other sighting reports have come out of Gary recently—one from September 2018 and another from January 2019—although the winged creatures in those cases were much closer in size to modern herons.

This is the latest in a string of flying creature sightings around Lake Michigan that ostensibly began in the spring of 2017, but more historical accounts are being reported as more people become aware of the phenomenon.  Most of the sightings have taken place near the lakefront in Chicago within a few miles of Lake Michigan, although there are some reports coming from the suburbs surrounding Chicago and even farther afield in every state bordering the great lake.  The sightings generally take place in the evening or at night, often in or near a park, and around water.  Witnesses consistently describe a large, bat or bird-like creature—although in a small number of cases the creature was described as insect-like—sometimes with glowing or reflective red, yellow, or orange eyes; and humanoid features such as arms and legs are often reported.  Many of the sightings are also of something seen only briefly or are described only as a flying creature with few details, which leaves open the possibility that a large bird or bird-like being could explain some encounters. 

To report a sighting 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.

If you enjoyed this article and would like to support the Singular Fortean Society, please consider becoming an official member by signing up through our Patreon page—membership includes a ton of extra content and behind-the-scenes access to the Society’s inner workings.

Recent News