Nature is a killer.
The four Hoyt brothers – Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John – all followed their father’s footsteps and became ministers in the Protestant faith.
In 1937, they purchased a large home in Cross, which was equidistant between the congregation of each brother. This home served as a place for the families to gather and to celebrate the holidays. It was also the home to which the brothers retired to enjoy their true passion: fox hunting.
During their summers, the Hoyt brothers traveled to England, where they discovered the sport.
When they became established members of their various communities, the brothers purchased the horses and dogs necessary to enjoy their sport. The new property in Cross not only had a stable for both types of animals, but there was a robust fox population as well.
Within three years, however, the brothers had hunted their prey to extinction on the property.
Seeking more foxes to hunt, Mark spotted a vixen over Duncan Blood’s property line. The female played in plain sight of the road, and her kits played in the open as well.
Knowing that Duncan did not allow others to hunt upon his land, the Hoyt brothers decided to carry on a hunt when he was not at home. They waited until news came to them that Duncan was to travel into Boston for a day.
Armed with this knowledge, the brothers hastily returned to their home in Cross and prepared for their hunt.
The four brothers left early on the morning of February 1, 1941.
At 8:13 in the evening, their bodies were discovered by Duncan Blood.
The Hoyts were stretched out end to end. Crows had feasted on the soft portions of their faces, and their own dogs had eaten the intestines and sweetmeats. Even the muzzles of the horses were stained with blood.
The Vixen and her pups sat and watched with sly grins upon their faces.
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