The Massacre at Crybaby Bridge: An Oral History - Chap 6
JOEY KESSLER, LOCAL RESIDENT, FARMER:I lost me about seven head of cattle that night, including my bull. Beats all I’d ever seen or heard about and I’ve had a cow wander up and somehow get smashed in the horse head of a pumpjack. I thought that was the worst I’d seen.
STEPHEN PARKER: A jarring pain shot up from my heels and shuddered my spine as I just crashed into the bottom of the ravine that the creek ran through. I was worried I had blown out my ankles, but the dirt and ground were soft and damp and cushioned my fall to a degree. I heard sticks and brush breaking and dirt falling down behind me. I looked back to see Nick sliding down after me, calling my name out in a whisper.
SKYE BRIGGS: Hailey and I had split up from the boys. They had fallen off into the creek. In our panic, we jumped the nearest barbed wire fence. It was a field and the moon was up in front of us and there was like a low lying fog on the ground. There were cows standing out in the field. I guess we figured we could run aways down the field and look down into the creek for Nick and Stephen. Meet up with them. We didn’t really have much time to discuss it.
HAILEY ADAMS: I was like, “Shit dude, cows freak me out.” Skye just said, “keep going. They won’t mess with you.” We started running towards them because that was really the only way. I glanced back and could see the big guy leaping the fence like it was nothing.
STEPHEN PARKER: We tramped down the creek, splashing through the cold water and mud. Nick asked if I had a phone and I told him no. It wasn’t common in those days for everyone to have one. Half the people I knew had a little Nokia, but that was it. From up above we could hear cows bellowing and mooing all of a sudden, some sort of distress call. We decided to see what was going on, make sure the girls were ok.
HAILEY ADAMS: We were darting in and out of cows and they were starting to stir around us, waking up I guess. Some were lying down and started standing up and I almost tripped on a little one. I could hear Big Baby crunching behind us. I’d never been so scared in my life.
SKYE BRIGGS: The cows kinda surrounded us and started following us, like they thought we were there to feed them or something. I was worried we might trip and get trampled in the dark. We were moving pretty fast and they were picking up their pace, clomping after us. That’s when
HAILEY ADAMS: I remember being acutely aware that I was much faster than Skye. I was trying to match her pace. I could’ve easily just smoked her and left her in the dust. Probably would’ve bought myself some time and I remember in all the panic and fear having that though, y’know? “Leave her. Leave her.”
SKYE BRIGGS: From behind us there was a thick slapping sound, like someone slapping a broomstick on a leather couch. This was followed by a crunching and a wet plopping, dead weight hitting the ground. It came again and again and there was the clang of steel. The cows were really bellowing and screaming and some of their cries were strangled out in the night.
HAILEY ADAMS: The pasture ended in a rise and another fence. The cattle dashed past us.
STEPHEN PARKER: Me and Nick clawed our way up the sides of the ravine, pulled ourselves up. We could see a little stampede of black shadows, Big Baby following them, swinging his giant blade around like a samurai. He sliced the head off of a cow that didn’t have any hind legs left, that was just dragging itself forward. The strength that it would take to do such a thing. I had half a mind to just dip back down into the creek, bury myself and hope for the best.
SKYE BRIGGS: By this time, we’d made it to the fence. The cattle had veered off, changed course except for the few that had managed to clear the fence. Hailey, she helped me over first. I’m always gonna be indebted to her for that….
STEPHEN PARKER: We finally found the girls, they were way ahead of Big Baby, but he was closing fast with his steady pace. Cows were running back his direction, towards the creek, any which way they could in their raw animal panic. I knew the feeling.
HAILEY ADAMS: Skye gets over the fence. I’ve got a foot on the barb wire near the post and I’m about to step up and pull myself over.
STEPHEN PARKER: Big Baby was out in the middle of the field, probably fifty yards away from Skye and Hailey. He raised his fist, the one with the blade in it and cocked his arm. Nick stood up and started yelling at him, “Hey dickface! Over here ya fuckin’ pussy!” It was too late for a distraction. In one smooth movement he yanked his arm down at the elbow. The blade was now a missile and it was heading straight for them.
SKYE BRIGGS: I turned to help Hailey. There was a ripple in the light, something moving towards us. There was an impact, a thud. Hailey’s eyes got big. A choking sound escaped her throat. She fell forward.
JOEY KESSLER, LOCAL RESIDENT, FARMER**:** I had never seen carnage such as this. It was like pure cruelty. Cows cut in half, beheaded, just cut every which way. My best bull sliced right up the middle. I didn’t have any livestock insurance. Just had to eat the cost. A pitiful waste. Over by the property line’s where we found the girl. It was like following the carnage to the nasty surprise at the end.