Skip to content

By Laura Moncur in The Disappearance of Glen and Bessie Hyde

Bessie and Glen Hyde by LauraMoncur from FlickrThe sirens of fame and fortune has lain wreck to many a boat, including mine. In 1928, Glen and I had just gotten married. We were going to set a new speed record for the fastest rafting of the Grand Canyon and I was going to be the first woman to conquer the rapids. I could imagine my face on the cover of Life Magazine with Glen and our scow that he built with his own hands. Our honeymoon was going to make us a lot of money and all the folks back in West Virginia were going to see my face in the newspaper. We were going to be famous and rich.

It’s funny how clearly I could see my fame back in 1928. I saw it with such clarity that I KNEW it would happen. I had no doubts. Even today, looking at the spread in Life Magazine, it looks exactly how I had imagined it would when we were rafting through the Grand Canyon. Sure, I’m on a different boat and Glen is no longer by my side, but the photos of me are just as I envisioned.

Do I feel guilt? Nope, not a bit. I wish I could have done things differently, but I did the best I could do.

Never thought of telling this story. I’ve kept quiet and lived the life of another woman for so long that the name Bessie doesn’t even feel like my own anymore. I’ve hidden longer than I needed to, but once you try on a different life, it’s pretty hard to take off that skin. But something about that fateful winter in 1928 needs to be told. I don’t know if I feel like bragging about my inventions or haunted by the reason that Glen’s no longer with us today. Either way, I have to tell the true story about the disappearance of Glen and Bessie Hyde.