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It wasn’t a bear

I’ll begin by stating that I’ve been a paramedic for nearly six years, spending all of that time in Ontario, Canada. For the most part, the job’s been relatively textbook. Not to say it wasn’t brutal, as I’ve experienced plenty of bullet holes, knife wounds, and burn victims. The job of a paramedic is to stabilise an injured persons’ condition, to make sure they’re able to arrive at a hospital, and receive proper treatment, before death, so we see plenty of gruesome sights. However, the experience I’m about to share with you was in a league of it’s own.

Mid way through 2015. I was working the “night shift,” if you could call it that, in a small district of Ontario. At our dispatch, there were a total of twenty three of us working, waiting for the tell-tale call to action. Usually, there are two paramedics in an ambulance, unless multiple people are hurt or injured. When I got the instruction to head out, me and my partner, we’ll call him Mike, climbed into the back of the ambulance. The call was placed at 2:13 AM, and we left two minutes after. From the vague description, a man was mauled by what he said was “a bear, but bigger and faster.” He was on a residential street, at least a few blocks away from any wooded area large enough to support a bear, so we found it strange that he referenced the animal.

When we arrived on site, something was already “off.” The air had a very heavy coppery, or ozone scent to it, like right before a massive thunderstorm. It almost induced vomiting, it was that bad. Me and Mike exited the emergency vehicle. Upon glancing down the street, we saw the man who placed the call. He was lying on his stomach, arms and legs outstretched, with his face down, directly on the asphalt of the street. What was odd was, on this small suburban block, all the streetlights were out, aside from the one directly above the man. We quickly approached him, all the while, the copper smell getting stronger, and Mike asked him the basic questions. “Sir, were you the one who called 911? Sir, can you show us where you’ve attacked?” When we got within a few feet of him, he started making this odd noise. “Jittering” is how I would describe it. It was a really odd site. With his face flat on the asphalt, he was just jittering.

We rolled him over, to check for any injuries. By now, the copper smell was nearly overpowering. To even get a decent breath of air, I’d have to cover my shirt over my mouth. When we rolled him over, we immediately took a step back. His chest, and shirt, were gone. I tell you, completely missing. In place of where the torso skin should have been, it was just a large gouge mark, like a massive claw just swept across his body. It was oozing blood, and both me and Mike were utterly confused as to how he could still be alive, let alone conscious. After flipping him over, the jittering abruptly stopped, and his eyes closed. Upon checking his pulse, it was revealed that he was dead. We pronounced him dead on the scene, and labelled it as a wild animal attack.

As the bleeding came to an eventual halt, we prepared to load him into the back of the ambulance. I grabbed the stretcher, but Mike was focused on something else. I followed his gaze, and it appeared that he was staring at the corner of the street. Then I noticed what caught his attention. Next to the stop sign, towering at least two feet above it, was a man. As I said previously, the street lights were malfunctioning, so we couldn’t make any features out. He looked as if he was extremely skinny, and, there was a shadow of what looked like a vintage fedora atop his head. Mike called out to him, and, he vanished. He was gone. To this day, I’ve never seen anything like it. As he dissipated, the smell did as well. Normally, smells get less strong, over a period of time. However, the copper scent was there one moment, and gone the next.

To this day, I still am unsure of what we saw that night. If I had to guess, that man, or thing, we saw standing next to the stop sign had something to do with the man’s death. I’m still a paramedic currently, two years later, and I’ve never experienced anything similar. However, there’s one thing I definitely know: whatever attacked the man, it wasn’t a bear.

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