Seasonal Park Ranger Stories

I am a seasonal ranger for my local forest district. Despite the fact that I live in a fairly suburban area, the forest preserves still make up 12% of the county, with much of the property being heavily wooded…not far out wilderness but pretty secluded in some areas.

Being a seasonal employee, I have been on the job for a bit over a month now but in my short time here I have found:

The rest of the rangers say we find about one suicide a year, so here was the one for the year. When we go around opening parks each day, we drive through to make sure everything is OK. In this instance, I was driving through, and had just lost sight of the road when I saw a man hanging from a tree in a clearing. He had hung himself.

I called the cops and the coroner… the coroner took an hour to show up, and he was the only one with a ladder long enough to cut the guy down…. so I stared at a dead guy in a tree for an hour.

2. “Crazed, drugged up, naked man running around a parking lot….took me and 3 other rangers to catch the damn guy. When we finally caught him, found out he had multiple cuts across his body from running through brush and a rock lodged firmly up his ass.

3. Headless deer. Normally when a pack of coyotes take down a deer (yes we have a bunch of coyotes around here) they leave bite marks all over the body along with torn of flesh everywhere….but the head was cleanly sliced off and placed directly next to the body, meaning this is something created by human intervention. We still haven’t figured that one out yet.

And I have only been here for 5 weeks