Decades-Long Pursuit to Unearth The Mystery of D.B. Cooper Continues


In 1971, as a five-year-old, Eric Ulis watched a dapperly dressed man, later known as D.B. Cooper, board a commercial flight in Portland, Oregon. This man, donning a suit and sunglasses, casually ordered a bourbon and soda from seat 18E, only to reveal a chilling surprise. With a handwritten note, he declared to a flight attendant that he possessed a bomb, unveiling a bag filled with wires and red sticks.

This audacious act took place on November 24, 1971, on a journey destined for Seattle. Cooper brazenly demanded four parachutes and $200,000 in cash. Upon arrival in Seattle and getting possession of his demands, he let three dozen passengers disembark, kept the crew, and instructed the pilot to set course for Mexico City.

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However, the unexpected occurred. Cooper strapped the money to his waist and parachuted into the night from the rear of the plane, disappearing amidst the vast wilderness of the Pacific Northwest. The elusive Cooper became a phantom, triggering an intense FBI investigation, influencing airport security measures, and inspiring numerous books and TV documentaries. His daring escapade remains the only unsolved case of air piracy in the US.

Decades passed without significant leads, ultimately leading the FBI to close the case in 2016. However, Ulis, now in his 50s, continues his quest for clues, diligently scrutinizing tens of thousands of FBI documents on Cooper, looking for overlooked details by federal agents.

According to Ulis, the fascination around Cooper’s story stems from its surreal, James Bond-esque aura. A respectably mannered hijacker who vanished without a trace piques global attention. To nourish his burning interest, Eric Ulis maintains a notebook for sporadic inspiration, living in Phoenix, Arizona, and pursues a significant lead related to Cooper’s left-behind clip-on necktie.

This aviation geek and crime historian has dedicated the past decade to unearthing the mysterious hijacker’s identity. His pursuit of the truth has led him to host TV shows on History Channel, write an e-book, and since 2018, orchestrate an annual CooperCon where Cooper’s enthusiasts gather and pore over the inexplicable case.

Unyielding in his pursuit, Ulis will guide a team of volunteers next month to explore a region near Tena Bar along the Columbia River in Washington state. This place is significant as $5,800 of the ransom money was unearthed here in 1980. He’s optimistic that the key to unlocking Cooper’s identity may be hiding beneath the bushes or trees in the form of Cooper’s parachute.

Ulis’s most recent focus has been on an overlooked piece of evidence, the clip-on necktie from JCPenney that Cooper discarded before his audacious escape. Keen to explore this lead further, Ulis has legally sought permission for himself and a DNA expert to collect samples from the necktie’s metal spindle for DNA tests.

The ex-mysterious man’s case’s resolution remains elusive, driving Ulis and amateur sleuths’ pursuit. Armed with the power of persistency and a treasure trove of FBI documents, Ulis is confident that the enigma of D.B. Cooper’s true identity will finally be unraveled, even if it’s five decades since his conspicuous disappearance.

While the fervor for mystery and thrill is evident in Ulis’s pursuit of Cooper’s case, we at West Island Blog also recognize our readers’ penchant for excitement and gaming. If this story has inspired a streak of adventure within you, we suggest you may want to challenge yourself with the games of chance. Why not visit one of the top online casinos in Canada we’ve listed this month? It’s an entirely different realm of amusement but a captivating one that guarantees an enthralling experience.