The missing link is out here'
More than 30 people show up in Wilkes County to try to find Bigfoot
By Annette Fuller Published: March 06, 2011
MILLERS CREEK --
Rick Lunsford didn't want to take his vision of Bigfoot to the grave without sharing it, and that's why he arranged an outing in Wilkes County Saturday to try to find the big guy."I had a serious gallbladder infection a year ago, and the doctor gave me three to five days to live," said Lunsford, 52. He had an operation and recuperated, but the near-death experience convinced him that he had to come out with it — that he had seen Bigfoot in rural Wilkes County when he was 20."I've got five grandyoung'uns, and I wanted them to know about Bigfoot before I go. The missing link is out here in these hills," Lunsford said Saturday afternoon, surrounded by about 30 other Bigfoot adventurers who came out on a gray, rainy day to seek the creature.Lunsford described Bigfoot as between 6 and 8 feet tall, as broad as a refrigerator, with an oval head and dark eyes, and a hand similar to a human's, with a thumb and four fingers.The group met at the Millers Creek Food Lion parking lot at noon Saturday, in a drizzling rain."I honestly don't believe, but I could always be made a believer," said Matthew Billings of Hayes, a turkey hunter.Bobby Lee of North Wilkesboro said if Bigfoot is out there, "he's smart, because he's avoiding bear traps that can easily take a man's leg off."Logan Baker of Hayes said he wanted to come see what all the fuss was about. "We'd like to believe it; we'd like to find proof," said Baker, who is a deer hunter.Gary Pilkenton of Millers Creek said he is 75 percent sure that Bigfoot exists. "I believe that all these witnesses who have seen him, all these years, can't be lying. They come up with the same descriptions, by and large."Bigfoot is a species of animal that hasn't yet been recognized officially, Pilkenton said."He's a mammal, a primate of some kind."The group would look for footprints or broken limbs — anything that would show that a big creature had been there.About 12:30, the group got into their vehicles, and a caravan of trucks and cars headed toward the Roten Creek area, about 12 miles away. Vehicles slowly drove on a winding, misty mountainous road beside a wide creek, past Christmas tree farms, wood and brick bungalow houses, cows and churches, including Poplar Cove Baptist and New Light Baptist.
Lunsford said that when people tell him what he saw was probably a bear, he answers that "a bear has a neck, and this thing I saw, his head rested right on his shoulders."
Lunsford said after he saw Bigfoot, he didn't tell many people, only his wife. He said he waited 20 years to tell his mother, so as not to upset her.