RALEN, Texas –
A tragic story today out of Texas. Avid hunter Henry Hill accidentally shot his 14-year-old neighbor, Joey Gribble, who was testing out his Bigfoot costume he’d created for Halloween.
“Joey is a perfectionist,” said his mother Nancy, while holding vigil at her son’s bedside. “He spent weeks and weeks on that costume. His favorite movie is Harry and the Hendersons, and he watches it at least three times a day. He wanted to go as John Lithgow for Halloween last year, but he couldn’t get the costume exactly right, so I suggested that he just go as Harry himself, the Bigfoot; Now I regret making that suggestion.”
The fascination with Bigfoot, the elusive ape-like creature, has spawned much debate. Largely discounted by the scientific community, its existence is kept alive by folklore and sporadic, if not verifiable, eyewitness sightings. Also known as Sasquatch, the beast continues to provoke interest, most recently evidenced by a television special, Killing Bigfoot, set to debut on the TLC cable network.
“I don’t know anything about those guys who are out to ‘find’ Bigfoot,” said Hill. “My neighbors know that this was a terrible accident. We’re all devastated. I mean secretly, at first I was really excited when he went down, because I thought I had really shot Bigfoot, and I was going to be rich! I don’t know why Joey needed to test the costume out while running through the woods grunting, but that was just the kind of boy he was. Joey is like a son to me, and I’ll tell you what, I’m hurting as much as his family is.”
Family physician Dr. Scarlett Maizie said: “Joey was critically injured in a shooting accident while dressed in a Bigfoot Halloween costume, and what I can tell you now is that he is receiving the best care possible, and we are excited to see that his condition is slightly improving as the hours go by – but he’s not out of the woods yet. Well, literally he’s out of the woods, you know, but metaphorically we don’t know 100% if he’ll make it. His Bigfoot costume is certainly ruined, though. Unless, of course, he wants to go as ‘Zombie Bigfoot’ next Halloween.”
“Everyone knows everyone here,” said Joseph’s father Dale. “It really bugs me that some people think we’re just a bunch of gun-toting, conspiracy-believing crazies, when that’s not the case. Although in retrospect, I wish that Joey had just been into Spider-Man movies or something.”
Dale also added that a number of strangers have offered messages of support. The town’s nearest city, McManorburgh, which for decades has held a fierce football rivalry with Ralen, dedicated its last football game to the family, and the team’s coach delivered a halftime message of support, urging fans to keep the family in their thoughts and prayers.
“Yup,” said neighbor Mike Judge. “That’s what we do here, we stick together. Like glue we do, we stick together like glue.”