Mysterious vanishings and what I like to call "almost vanishings," wherein a person has disappeared only to reappear again with a strange story suggesting they could have very well have been gone forever, are surely enigmatic enough as it is. Yet, in some cases there are details that suggest there are odd and very dark forces possibly at work behind the scenes. Such are those of these cases that involve some sort of entities, the nature of which we cannot understand, which according to these reports might have stepped out of the fringe to claim these people.

One very strange recent case of mysterious entities and a what seems to be a near vanishing revolves around the case of a witness known only as Mark, who worked on his parents’ dairy farm in the state of California. In August of 2019, Mark was working late, when at around 3:15 AM the silence was broken by what sounded like muffled voices wafting through the air from behind a nearby hay barn. The startled man could not figure out why anyone would be out there at that hour, and a patrol of the farm turned up no intruders or trespassers, indeed no sign of where the anomalous sounds had come from. He tried to forget about it and chalk it up to tiredness, but the voices would start up again on several occasions, with the source never identifiable.

He decided to sit in a feed loader within the barn and wait until the voices started again, after which his plan was to flick on the lights and catch whoever it was, but he must have fallen asleep, because the next thing he knew he was waking up in an unfamiliar room with a door in front of him. He sat up and peered at this door, which had not been there before, and as he did it apparently flew open to disgorge a knife wielding man, who ran at him without a sound or expression on his face. Somehow Mark was able to side step the attack and send the would be attacker sprawling to the floor, after which the stranger would lie still as if dead, and the night would become even more surreal yet.

As Mark prodded the fallen assailant with his foot, two other doors apparently appeared out of thin air, and from each of these stepped another strange entity. One was an extremely tall, lanky man with the head of a crow, and the other was a man in a business suit who had a contorted face that was “smiling and twisted.” This man with the contorted face allegedly grabbed Mark by the wrists, and as it did its shirt fell open to reveal a buzzing circular saw-blade embedded within its chest that it seemed to be pulling him towards. The panicked Mark knocked the entity to the ground, where it lie still and apparently dead just as the knife wielding man had done. That crow-faced entity then stepped forward to loom over Mark and stare at him before backing away back to the door it had come through, stepping through it and then vanishing, whereupon the horrified and baffled witness jolted awake in that feed loader, with no sign of any of the entities and the doors gone.

He would have blamed it all on a very bad and trippy dream, but looking at his wrists he could see red hand marks left behind from where he had been grabbed, which burned as if hot, and a peek at his watch showed that just 5 minutes had passed since he had sat within that loader. What happened to this witness? Did Mark encounter extra-dimensional entities who sought to abduct him for inscrutable purposes, or was this simply all a hallucination? Who knows, but it is a very outlandish a and surreal report, and we are left to wonder what these entities were, if anything.

An attempted abduction by possible aliens or inter-dimensional interlopers fits in well with our next case, which was related by David Paulides, this time in a Coast 2 Coast AM interview with George Knapp. In this weird account, a 3-year-old boy known only as John Doe went missing on Oct 1 2010 at around 6:30 PM along a popular fly fishing river near Mt. Shasta, in California. Shortly after his reported disappearance, authorities conducted a search of the area and found the boy 5 hours later sitting in a stand of trees and seemingly dazed and confused. He would later come forth with quite the odd story to tell.

According to the boy, he had been taken into a cave deep within the mountain by a woman who he had thought was his grandmother. Once they had reached their destination, the boy claimed that he had found himself in a cold, dark room full of human-looking robots that sat or stood around in various positions, apparently motionless, as well as some form of guns or weapons scattered about accruing dust, not to mention giant spiders skittering about in the gloom. It was then that the boy allegedly realized that there was a strange light emanating from his grandmother’s head and that she too was some sort of robot. The “grandmother” apparently ordered him to defecate upon a sheet of paper and got agitated when he refused. The grandmother also told him that he was from outer space and had been planted in his mother’s womb. The boy was then taken back outside and told to wait in a thicket until he was found.

When the whole incredibly bizarre tale came to light, the grandmother confessed that a year before the incident she had been camping in the area and had been inexplicably pulled from her tent and deposited a short distance away. When she had woken up, she claimed to have felt a pain in the base of her neck, and had discovered two puncture marks surrounded by red skin. The grandmother had no idea if this had anything to do with the boy’s far-out tale, but it does seem rather odd. Paulides has claimed that this is one of the more bizarre disappearances he has come across, and the whole tale seems rather absurd if not for the fact that everyone involved has continued to maintain that it is true.

A perhaps even more terrifying encounter allegedly occurred in April of 1992, and while it did not result in a vanishing it certainly seems like it was headed in that direction. On the evening of April 12, the anonymous witness was driving through the desolate desert wasteland of US 180 near Deming, New Mexico, at approximately 11:20 PM when he noticed a white light shining in the dark off to the left side of the road. Thinking this to be odd he continued on his way, only to suddenly notice that a grayish-white, luminous cloud of smoke had stretched across the road ahead almost like a wall.

The witness then drove right on into this eerie fog, and claimed to have driven through it for around an hour but soon found that it was so thick he could barely see the road right in front of his truck. It was all extremely odd considering that such dense fogs are exceedingly rare in such desert locales. Perplexed, the witness exited the vehicle to take a look around, but as he did he claims that he abruptly lost control of his limbs and sprawled to the ground, dizzy and numb and unable to move. As he lie there on the parched earth surrounded by this clinging vapor, two shadowy figures approached out of the murk to grab him by each arm and begin hauling him through the smoke towards a shiny metallic object situated nearby.

According to the witness, these beings brought him through a rectangular opening in the side of the craft and placed him in a chair-like device. It was now that he could see that the two figures were not human, but rather slender, bony entities around 5 feet in height, with oval faces and large black eyes. The chair was put into a reclining position and the witness claims that something was inserted into his nose, some type of tube or device, which caused a distinct buzzing and stinging sensation that caused him to shout out. The two beings were apparently startled, reportedly then throwing him back outside, after which he levitated to his vehicle and the thick fog melted away to leave him there shaking and sobbing in the desert night. What would have happened to him if he had not managed to escape?

A possible such abduction in which the person never did come back to tell the tale is the very weird case of the vanishing of Granger Taylor, who disappeared in 1980 from his parent’s home in the rural town of Duncan, on Vancouver Island in Canada. A high school dropout, Taylor had nevertheless been a remarkably talented mechanic all of his life, he had always had the urge to build and tinker with things, including rebuilding a junked bulldozer, renovating and restoring an abandoned old locomotive he had found out in the forest as well as a vintage World War II P-40 Kitty Hawk airplane, which he fixed up good as new. His skill with building things was undeniable.

Granger Taylor

Granger was not without his own eccentricities, as such geniuses are wont to be, and at one point he painstakingly constructed an actual life sized UFO in his yard over the course of a year, tirelessly cobbled together from some old satellite dishes and other assorted spare parts and junk. It was around this time when Granger had expressed intense interest in the subject of UFOs and aliens, and he began to make increasingly bizarre claims to his friends that he was in regular telepathic contact with actual extraterrestrials. By all accounts he had become hopelessly and deeply obsessed with UFOs, constantly reading about them and theorizing about how they worked, and it was practically the only thing he would ever talk about. He would spend hours locked away within his UFO replica, which was equipped with a stove and a bed, feverishly reading about UFOs and doing who knows what else out there. Things got weirder still when Granger began to tell his friends that not only had aliens been contacting him, but that they had actually invited him on a journey aboard one of their craft.

On November 29, 1980, the night he vanished without a trace, Granger had dinner at a diner he regularly frequented, despite the fact that a severe storm was ominously brewing outside. On that night, gale force winds were beginning to come roaring through the area, eventually knocking out large swaths of electricity and causing mass panic. Granger returned home through the storm and left an incredibly weird letter behind for his parents in the barn, which had served for his workstation where he tinkered with and built all manner of curious things. The deeply weird letter read:

Dear Mother and Father,
I have gone away to walk aboard an alien spaceship, as recurring dreams assured a 42-month interstellar voyage to explore the vast universe, then return. I am leaving behind all my possessions to you as I will no longer require the use of any. Please use the instructions in my will as a guide to help.

On the back of the letter was inexplicably scrawled a map of Waterloo Mountain, around 20 miles away, the significance of which has never been ascertained. After writing this letter, Granger got into his 1972 Datsun pick-up truck and drove out into the roiling storm outside, his final destination unknown. True to his word, he had indeed left behind everything he owned, including a sizable chunk of cash to the tune of $10,000, although his secretly penned last will held few clues at all. He has never been seen again. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) immediately organized a massive search for the missing man, but no sign of neither him nor his vehicle could ever be located. The only possible clue ever found was a few bits of human bone that were found 4 miles away from the Taylor property at a dynamite blast site, with the main theory being that Granger had had some dynamite in his truck that had accidentally gone off, but it has never been conclusively determined whether these remains really belonged to Granger or not.

In the years since, the bizarre vanishing has of course produced many theories as to what happened to him. One is that he had simply had enough of his life and either went off to start a new one or ended it, or that he accidentally exploded himself with dynamite, as the evidence seems to suggest. Another is that he was the victim of foul play of some sort, but there is no evidence to support this. There is also the idea that he had some sort of psychotic break from reality and fled off into the unknown, which is supported by claims from friends and family that Granger had been heavily smoking a lot of pot and frequently dropping acid in the months leading up to his inexplicable vanishing. Then of course in light of his final letter there is the notion that he actually did make contact with his beloved aliens, and that they had spirited him away to destinations unknown. Whether Granger was the victim of suicide, a demented, troubled mind, or he was truly whisked away to the stars by otherworldly beings, his odd case has never been solved, and it remains one of the strangest, surreal disappearances there is.

One such case that is rather completely off the wall concerns a man who was whisked away to be held prisoner by a strange race of people for years before being spat back into our reality once again. The tale concerns a pilot only known as Eddy, who was out on a mission and approached Howland Island, eerily in the vicinity where Amelia Earhart notoriously vanished, where he claims to have seen a vast expanse of green fog, which upon entering caused his aircraft to malfunction and his communications with the outside world to cease. As he emerged from the fog, Eddy reported that he had come into visual sight of an island that was not supposed to be there, and which did not show up on any charts.

Eddy was able to land the jet, and was supposedly approached by a young woman of seemingly Polynesian descent, who apologized and stated that the island had a habit of pulling in planes such as his. Eddy would purportedly end up living on the mysterious uncharted island for around 6 months, where he claimed the inhabitants lived a simple lifestyle, all while intensive search efforts were being made to find him. None of the island residents seemed to have the slightest awareness of nor concern for the outside world which Eddy had left behind, and they seemed to be perfectly content with their reclusive existence.

Yearning for home, Eddy became despondent, after which he was told he could finally return to from whence he came. As he put distance between himself and the strange island which had been his home for months, he allegedly suddenly regained radio communications and was found by a passing fishing vessel. It was at that point that the entire island reportedly became veiled by a green mist and blinked out of existence in a flash of brilliant white light. Did this pilot manage to punch through some barrier between dimensions and make contact with a parallel universe of some sort? Would he have remained forever vanished like so many other aircraft if he hadn’t been allowed to leave? Was this aliens, a lost civilization, or what? Could it be that numerous other pilots who have seemed to have flown off the edge of the earth have wound up in realms like these, perhaps some sort of pocket dimensions? It is unclear just what the answers to these questions are.

One of the most bizarre mysterious disappearances and reappearances involving strange entities is one that I have covered before but which seems worth mentioning here again all the same. The case was told by David Paulides in an interview for Paranormal Central, and comes from the year 1868, when 3-year-old girl suddenly went missing in Northern Michigan as she was at a lumber camp run by her father. According to the father, she had been there one second and then simply gone the next, as if she had simply blinked from existence. A search was launched, during which the panicked father enlisted the help of two hunters to try and find his young daughter lost out alone in the woods. The girl’s name was called over and over again into the thick forest as night and shadows slowly crept up on them, yet no answer came back. It was as she had vanished into thin air. With the onset of darkness, the search was called off until the next morning, with no trace of where the young girl had gone off to.

The next day the search continued and the hunters were hard at work scouring the woods for any sign of the missing girl. As they trudged through rugged, dense wilderness, they allegedly heard the shouts of a young girl from nearby, which sounded muffled and muted somehow, like sounds coming from farther away than they were, as if through some veil or blanket. The hunters claimed that they followed the source of the shouts to a river, and that as they fought through brush to approach they could hear a large splash after which they saw an enormous black shape that they took to be perhaps a bear entering the water and swimming towards the opposite shore. As they stared in shock at the retreating beast, they noticed the girl standing upon a nearby log, minus some articles of clothing.

When the girl was recovered, she seemed to be rather shaken up, and claimed that the creature they had seen was named Mr. Wolf and that he had been holding her prisoner there. She claimed that this Mr. Wolf had eaten her hat, taken her shoes, and had refused to let her leave under any circumstances, although he had also provided her with berries to eat. It is unclear whether this was a bear, a wolf, or something else, and the story certainly seems rather bizarre. What was this “Mr. Wolf” and what did it want? Just what is going on here?

There has been some doubt as to the veracity of this particular story, with skepticism cast on Paulides’ reporting of the events. According to paranormal investigator Theo Paijmans, Paulides may have exaggerated some elements of the story and even confused the case with the fairy tale Little Red Riding Hood, as there is very little corroborating evidence in the news of the time to suggest that there was ever this mysterious “Mr. Wolf.” Paijmans told me:

In regards to Paulides’ retelling of the 1868 missing girl case, his version is not supported by any of the original sources. The story was widely reported in various US newspapers. Not in the timeframes Paulides claims, but in 1868, 1882 and again in 1903. Each time the retellings of the story consistently remain the same. None of the many articles that appeared in the American newspapers from 1868 to 1903 mention a “Mr. Wolf”. A bear is mentioned though – but that’s it, plain and simple. Paulides may have been confused by the old German-Dutch European fairy tale of Little Red Riding Hood (the girl Little Red Riding Hood visits her grandmother in the forest and meets with a wolf in disguise who wants to eat her) in this account.

It is hard to say what is going on here, but it is a wild story all the same. We are left to ask, are there things out there that seek to whisk us away to other realms for nefarious purposes? Do certain entities stalk about in the periphery waiting for their chance to strike, with only those who have managed to escape bringing back glimpses into the possibilities of what has happened to those who have stepped off the face of the earth? Whatever the case may be, these are very odd and disturbing accounts that serve to stoke the fires of the imagination and make us wonder just what forces lie out there beyond our understanding.

Brent Swancer

Brent Swancer is an author and crypto expert living in Japan. Biology, nature, and cryptozoology still remain Brent Swancer’s first intellectual loves. He's written articles for MU and Daily Grail and has been a guest on Coast to Coast AM and Binnal of America.

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