Police are asking the public to stop looking for more than $2 million dollars in buried gold and jewels after two people died during the hunt, according to NY Daily News.
Authorities have noted that a pastor, Paris Wallace, lost his life while searching for the New Mexico treasure. The body of 54-year-old treasure hunter Randy Bilyeau was also found, washed up on the Rio Grande river.
This treasure wasn’t buried in times past, by our ancestors. It was organized by famed author and millionaire antiques dealer Forrest Fenn. The 86-year-old eccentric began leaving clues as to the location of the treasure in his 2010 book The Thrill of the Chase.
After the deaths, police have called on Fenn to officially dig up the treasure, thus ending the search.
“I would implore that he stop this nonsense,” Police Chief Pete Kassetas told the Santa Fe New Mexican. “Certainly, we want people to get outdoors and enjoy New Mexico but you have to do it safely.”
However, the 86-year-old author is still undecided as to whether or not he will heed the advice of police, though he did note that the death of Pastor Wallace was “a terrible loss.”
“The several hundred emails I have received today are overwhelming against stopping the search,” he said. “My mind is open to finding a solution, but no decision has been made.”
Police Chief Kassetas responded by saying Fenn is “putting lives at risk.”
Interestingly, Mitzi Wallace, wife of the deceased pastor, says she will continue hunting for the treasure, along with their 19-year-old son.
As for the contents of the chest, Fenn also spoke to ABC News and described what is contained in the elusive treasure haul.
“[It is] mostly American eagles and double eagles, hundreds of gold nuggets, some as large as chicken eggs, ancient Chinese carved jade figures, Pre-Colombian gold animal artifacts, lots of rubies, emeralds, sapphires, and diamonds and other things.”
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