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While on his daily rounds, Chuck Bernard, the local postal delivery man, stopped at the Henrichs farm to find that the previous day’s mail had not been collected. As this had never happened before, Bernard decided to carry the mail himself up to the house. Fifty feet from the front door, he heard what sounded like gunshots, cries of pain, and calls for help. Bernard fled the scene, drove ten miles to the nearest pay phone, and called the police. When two sheriff’s deputies and a paramedic team arrived, they found the Henrichs family brutally slaughtered. The only survivor, Freda Henrichs, was obviously experiencing the symptoms of advanced infection. She bit both paramedics before the deputies could restrain her. A third deputy, last to arrive and new to the force, panicked and shot her in the head. The two bitten men were brought to the county hospital for treatment and died soon afterward. Three hours later, they rose during their autopsy, attacked the coroner and his assistant, and moved out to the street. By midnight the entire town was in a panic. At least twenty-two zombies were now at large and had completely devoured fifteen people. Many survivors sought refuge in their homes. Others tried to flee the city. Three schoolchildren managed to climb to the top of a water tower. Although surrounded (several ghouls tried to scale the tower but were kicked back to the ground), these children remained safe until they were rescued. One man, Harland Lee, left his home armed with a modified Uzi submachine gun, a sawed-off, double-barreled shotgun, and two .44 magnum pistols (one a revolver, the other an automatic). Witnesses reported seeing Lee attack a group of twelve zombies, firing first his Uzi then the other weapons in turn. Each time, Lee aimed for the zombie’s torso, causing extreme damage but no kills. Low on ammo, and backed against a mass of wrecked cars, Lee attempted head shots with a pistol in each hand. Because his hands were shaking too violently, Lee produced no hits whatsoever. The self-appointed town savior was quickly devoured. By morning, deputies from neighboring towns, along with state police and hastily assembled vigilante groups, had converged on Sperry. Armed with sighted hunting rifles and new knowledge of the fatal head shot (a local hunter had learned this defending his home), they quickly dispatched the threat. The official explanation (provided by the Department of Agriculture) was “mass hysteria from pesticide release in local water table.” All bodies were removed by the Centers for Disease Control before civilian autopsies could be performed. The majority of radio recordings, news footage, and private photographs was immediately confiscated. One hundred and seventy-five lawsuits were filed by various survivors. Ninety-two of these cases have been settled out of court, forty-eight are still pending, and the remainder have been mysteriously dropped. One lawsuit was recently filed for access to the confiscated media footage. A court decision is said to be years away.