The 46-year-old claimed his wild game diet gave him the strength of a wild animal. He was wrong.
MEDFORD, Ore. – Medford resident Carl Haynesworth, 46, was killed by an Alaskan Brown Bear last week after attempting to “strangle it with his bare hands,” witnesses say. Although the hunter was in possession of a rifle, he reportedly felt emboldened by recent changes to his diet and remarks from some of his favorite hunting celebrities who claimed eating wild game allowed them to “harness the power of that animal.”
In a video posted to his Instagram account the day before his departure, Haynesworth told his 237 followers he was in the best shape of his life and felt “as strong and wild as a bear” thanks to his strict diet, which he said consisted only of black bear meat, Liquid IV and an assortment of creatine supplements. He ended his video by saying, “Keep hammering, primals.”
Haynesworth’s wife, Sharon, said her husband was likely going through a mid-life crisis and had become increasingly disinterested in his family life.
“I know this sounds horrible, but I’m not upset he’s gone. Carl had treated us like second-class citizens for years,” Sharon Haynesworth said. “We stopped going on family vacations, he quit attending his son’s football games – all because he had this idea he’d become an ‘apex predator.’ Every time I’d ask him to spend some time with his family, he’d say, ‘Sharon, predators never quit,’ and then leave us for months at a time. What a sack of shit.”
Even Haynesworth’s closest friends say they were growing tired of his “act.” His longtime hunting partner, Russ Johnson, said he couldn’t understand why a “46-year-old desk worker would cast his friends and family aside to try to become a hunting influencer.”
“Look, I hate to speak ill of the dead, but Carl was kind of a bitch, you know?” Johnson said. “I only started hunting with him because our wives were friends and he seemed lost. Next thing you know, he’s following all of these ‘fitness hunters’ on Instagram and parroting whatever bullshit that came out of the latest Joe Rogan Experience episode. He even did that goofy “75 Hard” thing. It was sad to watch.”
Johnson says he, Sharon and others attempted a sort of “intervention” last November. Shortly after, Haynesworth posted a video online in which he ranted about “ignoring the haters” and “staying the course.”
“Haters?” Sharon Haynesworth said laughingly. “I’m his f**king wife, for Christ’s sake. My only regret is I didn’t get to physically watch him get torn apart.”
The trip to Alaska was meant to be Haynesworth’s breakout moment. He’d reportedly maxed out his credit cards to pay for the excursion, and believed the “content” captured during the hunt would give him the credibility needed to acquire a large fan base, sponsorships and guest appearances on some of the hunting industry’s biggest podcasts. He’d written in his journal, “once I’ve gone toe-to-toe with a brown bear and won, who will deny me?”
Haynesworth’s hunting guide for the trip, Marshall Barnston, says he knew something was “off” about the Oregonian as soon as he greeted him at camp.
“I asked him if he was ready for the hunt of a lifetime, and he said he’d ‘eaten nothing but bear meat for the past six months’ and ‘felt the power of the bear coursing through his veins,'” Barnston said. “I thought maybe ‘bear meat’ was slang for TRT (testosterone replacement therapy), but nope, he was serious. In moments like that, you kinda hope your client gets eaten, but you’re never lucky enough to see it happen. I got lucky.”
On day three of the hunt, Barnston reportedly located a large, male brown bear. He quickly formed a plan and maneuvered his client into position. The pair made it to a location with a good shooting angle roughly 150 yards from the bear. What happened next, Barnston says, was beyond belief.
“This jackass throws his rifle down, yells, ‘I AM THE PREDATOR,’ and takes off running towards the bear,” Barnston explained. “Before he made it 40 yards, the bear started charging him. I thought about shooting the bear to protect the client, but I figured I’d just let this one play out. Man, it was fun to watch.”
As the bear tore Haynesworth’s limbs off, Barnston says he felt a “wave of relief” wash over him.
“I just felt like this was something that needed to happen,” Barnston said. “Some lessons are best learned the hard way.”