In this email from Forrest to a fact-checker for a Outside Magazine, Forrest answers some questions you may have been wondering about yourself. The story is in the September 2015 issue and not all these “facts” made it into the final story. You can find the finished story by Peter Frick-Wright on the Media Coverage Page of this blog.
How old were you when you were a fly-fishing guide? Where was that?
I was about 13 and it was in and around Yellowstone Park.
How old will you be on August 15? What year were you born?
I will be 85 on August 22, 2015. I was born in 1930.
How old were you and what year did you join the Air Force?
I was 20 and I joined the AF on 6 Sept. 1950.
What happened the second time you were shot down in Vietnam? How were you rescued?
I ejected from my burning F-100 near the DMZ in Laos. I was rescued by a helicopter the next day, which was 21 Dec. 1968.
When were you discharged from the Air Force, and when did you move to Santa Fe?
I retired from the AF at the end of September 1970 and moved to Santa Fe in the summer of 1972.
When and how did your father pass away?
My father had terminal pancreas cancer and was given 6 months to live. He refused to take any pills for pain, and eighteen months later he took 50 sleeping pills. He died on 8 Feb, 1987.
Can you explain your first plan for the treasure, before your cancer went into remission? How did your disease impact the plan for the treasure? And why and when did you start it up again?
I don’t know what you mean by “first plan.” When I was told that I had a 20% chance of living 3 years I decided to take some of my things with me. My plan was to let my body go back to the earth at the place where I hid the treasure. When my cancer went into remission I decided to hide the treasure anyway.
How many people would you estimate have gone out looking for the treasure?
Based on the number of emails I have received I estimate that by the end of this summer (summer of 2015) 100,000 people will have been out searching.
Have you narrowed the search area for the treasure?
Yes, I said the treasure is hidden in the Rocky Mountains at least 8 miles north of Santa Fe, excluding Utah, Idaho, and Canada. I have said it is above 5000’ and below 10,200.
You told P* that, considering some of the lengths people have gone searching for the treasure, your story has turned into a monster.
I did not expect the story to get as big as it has, nor did I expect a few searchers to go to such great lengths in the hunt.
You’ve said repeatedly that the treasure isn’t in a dangerous place, and searchers shouldn’t look anywhere you couldn’t have gone.
That is true. There is no percentage in searching where a 79, or 80 year old man could not carry the treasure.