Old Man McGumbus Emerges from Underground Bunker

McGumbus emerges from his bunker!
McGumbus emerges from his bunker! Photo: Ysbrand Cosijn, Battlefield_Historian, Jordanlye/iStock/Thinkstock, bowie15/123RF

Hamptons Police Department officers were summoned to Wades Beach on Shelter Island on Monday in response to emergency calls reporting the sound of banging and muffled cries.

Knowing the beach in question is the site of Old Man McGumbus’s “secret” underground bunker, where the 115-year-old has been living in isolation for over a year, police brought in heavy digging equipment to locate the sealed entrance to the steel-plate bunker. After three hours of digging, the entrance was located, and a team of welders cut the heavy bolts that had secured the hidden dwelling from the outside. A team of doctors and EMTs was summoned to be on hand and tend to McGumbus in case he was in need of medical attention, and a helicopter was placed on stand-by to fly the cantankerous local to a hospital if the need arose.

However, when McGumbus was lifted out of the bunker, he appeared to be in excellent health—he even seemed to have gained some weight, which is perhaps attributable to his steady diet of dried meats. Police said McGumbus had told them he had “enough dried meat for 20 years” during his subterranean stay, which was first discovered after the Shelter Island Corps of Engineers dug up his bunker while furthering a controversial beach-replenishment project last November.

In December, without leaving the confines of his bunker, McGumbus instigated a bit of gunplay and a police standoff on the beach, and in February Hamptons police tried to extract him after a particularly bad run of snow, but McGumbus refused and he was promptly reinterred.

When asked by police and onlookers about his choice to return from isolation and rejoin the surface populace, Old Man McGumbus merely winked and said, “I hear my friend Donald needs a VP, and, well, I’m ready, willing and able.”

Read more tales from the Hamptons Police Blotter

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