2008-10-09 / Front Page

Peggy Ann Bradnick To Speak To FCHS

Will recount 1966 kidnapping at meeting

The Fulton County Historical Society (FCHS) will kick off the 35th annual Fulton Fall Folk Festival on Thursday evening, October 16, with a special program at the McConnellsburg High School auditorium at 7:00 p.m.

Peggy Ann Bradnick Jackson will share her personal story of her 1966 kidnapping near Shade Gap, Pa., by a mentally ill man known locally as "Bicycle Bill." After a week of searching for the man and his 17-yearold victim, William Hollenbaugh was eventually killed near Fort Littleton, but not before he had shot and killed an FBI agent as well as a tracking German shepherd dog. A Cambria County deputy sheriff was also wounded.

At that time, searchers made up the largest manhunt in Pennsylvania history and included nearly 2,000 law-enforcement officials and civilians.

The story drew national attention on evening news, including Walter Cronkite's report on "Mysterious Masked Mountain Man" and articles in Time and Saturday Evening Post magazines. A TV movie "Cry in the Wild: The Taking of Peggy Ann," a book "Deadly Pursuit," and a country folk song, "Eight Days At Shady Gap" were later written about this event. Robert V. Cox, a longtime Public Opinion reporter authored "Deadly Pursuit" and won a Pulitzer Prize for his coverage of the story. Cox, who went on to author another true crime book, "Missing Person," died in 1999.

Peggy Ann Bradnick Jackson will recount the details of her week-long ordeal during the fall meeting of the Fulton County Historical Society. An open-mike period will allow local search personnel and others to share their memories of the frightening eight days that put a small community on the national news map.

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