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PAGE 14 POST-GAZE'B'E, JULY 15, 2016 THOUGHTS BY DAN ABOUT THIS 8c THAT with Daniel A. DiCenso De Loys's Ape: A Srnouth American Mystery De Loys's famous photograph. In 1917, Francois de Loys, a Swiss geologist, led a party around the border between Colombia and Venezuela in search of petroleum near the Lake Maracaibo region. The mission itself proved to be a disaster. No petroleum was found, and by 1920, sixteen of the twenty men who accom- panied de Loys had died either through illness or from attacks by local tribes. Still, this mis- sion made de Loys something of a legend for reasons he could not have foreseen. One day, de Loys and his surviving team were camped by the Tarra River when they were approached by two tall hostile creatures which de Loys at first took to be bears. However, as they emerged from the vegeta- tion, their primate appearance became evident. The creatures were highly agitated by the presence of the team, throwing branches and excrement at the men. The men grabbed their guns and shot at the monkeys, killing the female while her mate ran off into the jungle. De Loys was a man with little to no zoological knowledge, but did realize upon examining the monkey's carcass that he had a very unusual specimen in his hands. De Loys and his com- panions had undoubtedly seen spider monkeys during their travels as they are common throughout South America. Therefore, his observation that this was an unusually large spider monkey should not be altogether discredited. He also did observe that it had only thir- ty-two teeth while most spider A white-bellied spider monkey. monkeys have thirty-six. Most importantly, the creature had no tail. Propping the carcass on a crate, de Loys and his men produced the only picture of the unknown creature for which there is a clear photograph. De Loys kept both the pic- ture and the story to himself for nine years until his friend, anthropologist George Montan- don, discovered the picture and recommend de Loys publish it as he judged it to be very im- portant in the study of South American tribes. And so, a new species of creature was named (Ameranthropoides loysi, in honor of its discoverer) and a zoological puzzle was created. Up to then, no apes were be- lieved to live in the Americas. Not long after the photo- graph was published, however, the voices of skepticism were heard. Leading the charge was anthropologist Sir Arthur Keith, who accused de Loys of purposely positioning the dead creature in such a posi- tion that a tail, even if there had been one present, was conveniently hidden from view. According to Keith, de Loys had simply shot a black spider monkey and tried passing it Boston Harborside Home Joseph A. Langone 580 Commercial St. - Boston, MA 02109 617-536-4110 Augustave M. Sabia, Jr. Trevor Slauenwhite Frederick ]. Wobrock Dino C. Manca Courtney A. Fitzgibbons A Service Family Affiliate of AFFS/Service Corporation International 206 Winter St., Fall River, MA 02720 Telephone 508-676-2454 J off as a new find. Years later, American cryptozoologist Ivan T. Sanderson also accused de Loys of a "deliberate deception", but thought the animal to be a white-bellied spider monkey, while his colleague Loren Cole- man thought it was a well-fab- ricated hoax inspired by a then popular depiction of Tarzan in an American magazine. Since then, many things have emerged that have brought into question de Loys' character (he was known as something of a prankster), Montandon's self- interest in pushing forward his theory about evolution in the rain forest, and the appear- ance of banana tree stumps in an uncropped version of the photo. Bananas, which are not native to Latin America, would most certainly not be found in an area as remote as the one in which de Loys purportedly encountered the ape. Furthermore, Enrique Tejera, a local who knew de Loys and actually grew quite fond of the Frenchman and his sense of humor wrote a letter to the Venezuelan newspaper El Universal in 1962 in which he recounted the story of de Loys monkey. According to Tejera, the animal was indeed a sickly spider monkey that was given to the party as a gag present. Its bones were so frail that it bit off its own tail, prompting de Loys to call the animal a "monkey man". Not long after, the animal died and de Loys took his famous picture, not in the Sierra de Perija (as de Loys claimed) but in the busy area of Mene Grande. The scientific community as a whole has not put much stock in de Loys' ape, but legends of "El Mono Grande" have per- sisted in the jungles of South America, coming from both Western travelers and local villagers. De Loys has largely been dismissed as a hoaxer but he has his defenders, including those believing the animal to be a surviving prehistoric relative of Homo sapiens. I see no reason to believe the animal is anything else but a spider monkey. But the story of de Loys' ape fascinates me. After all, our greatest legends are seldom based on fact, but on imagination, a love of adventure, and the power of narrative. Body Camera Pilot Program (Continued from Page 1) fine work that our members do on a day-to-day basis." The Mayor's Fiscal Year 2017 budget provided $500,000 to support the pilot, including project management service, evaluation and, potentially, personnel costs. Once the pilot period concludes, an evalu- ation will be completed on the program's effectiveness to determine next steps on a po- tential permanent program in Boston. Any remaining funds would be available for any implementation after the pilot has concluded. Start date of the pilot pro- gram, along with other specific policies related to body cam- eras, are in the process of being finalized by BPD. News Briefs (Continued from Page 1) Bratton Says Baltimore D.A. Overcharged NYPD Police Commissioner Billy Bratton slammed Balti- more State Attorney Marilyn Mosby for "playing to the crowd" by bringing assault, reckless endangerment, and misconduct charges against the six Balti- more police offers charged in the death of Freddy Gray last April. Mosby is 0-3 with the first three cops on trial, and now number four is going on trial. According to Bratton, "She's inexperienced. She over- charged, and as these cases go forward, it would be interesting to see ff she's successful at all with any of them." According to the Chief Dep- uty State Attorney, Michael Schatzow, the fourth defendant showed that "his conduct was a gross departure of what a reasonable officer would do" and the prosecutor states his actions constitute criminal negligence. To date, the prosecution has not proved anything in court, and I believe all six officers were overcharged, and all will walk out of court free men as they should. Shame on the state's attor- ney's office for appearing to let politics get in the way of crimi- nal justice. What happened to Freddy Gray was awful, but I don't believe any of the cops should have been overcharged to sooth the community. That is not the job of prosecutors. Twins Celebrate 103 Years Together The world's oldest set of male twins, Peter and Paulus Langerock of Belgium, just turned 103 years old. They have another two years to go to break the record of U.S. brothers Glen and Dale Moyer, both of whom reached 105. Noel Neill, TIPs Lois Lane Dead at 95 Back when I was growing up in the 1950s, I loved watching Superman every week on TV. Actress Noel Neill, for all but one season, played Lois Lane, re- porter for the Daily Planet, who worked side-by-side with Clark Kent, a.k.a. Superman. When asked why Lois Lane never recognized that Clark Kent and Superman were one and the same, Neill said, "I didn't want to lose my job." The Adventures of Superman went off the air in 1958 after getting renewed for 1959. Ac- tor George Reeves who played the "Man of Steel" apparently killed himself. I still remember that newspaper front page story back when I was only 11, "Su- perman Kills SeK." Global Warming Mongers Headline read "Extreme Heat Could Kill 3,000 New Yorkers by 2080." So said Time Maga- zine recently. And others, too. They keep throwing the cli- mate change scare at us. The president constantly tells us the same scare stories. The liber- als love hyping climate change, cooling or warming. Whichever one seems right for them. Have you noticed that meteo- rologists can't even accurately forecast the weather for two days from now, and we're sup- posed to be concerned about 2080? First off, 2080 is a long ways off. Most of us won't even be around, and if we were, we'd be 135 years old, like me. We can't be panicky for something that far off. I really just want to know if I can go to the beach this weekend, period. They are wasting their time and ours worrying about some- thing that sounds science tic- tion to most of us. The Word "Gangstah" is Bad Enough Without Using the New N-Word, Too The other day while selling sausages at Quincy Market with Johnny 2 Dog, a couple of African-American millenni- ums referred to the both of us as "OGsf When I asked what it meant, they said both of us were "Old Gangstahs" because we were Italian-Americans. They said it was a tone of en- dearment toward us. We all laughed. End Quote "The law should be stable, but never stand still." -- Oliver Wendell Holmes The POST-GAZETTE newspaper is a paper of general circulation. We are qualified to accept legal notices from any court in each town that we serve. For information on placing a Legal Notice in the POST-GAZETTE, please call (617) 227-8929; or mail notice to: POST-GAZEI-rE, P.O. BOX 135, BOSTON, MA 02113 Attn: Legal Notices