According to reports on Pedals' Facebook page, the beloved humanlike bear may have been shot by hunters during the state's extended black bear hunt season this week. Posters report that a hunter brought the body of a bear fitting Pedals' description into the Green Pond check station in Rockaway.
Officials have been unable to confirm the bear is indeed Pedals, but Oak Ridge resident Sabrina Pugsley, who runs Pedals' Facebook page, says the hunter who shot the bear in question spotted his mangled front paws, Pedals' trademark and the likely reason he walks upright. "He’s very easy to identify,” she told NorthJersey.com. "The right paw is missing and the left paw dangles."
The state Department of Environmental Protection says there's no way to identify a bear that hasn't been tagged or had a DNA sample taken previously, and note that rumors of Pedals' demise are "based on hearsay accounts." For now, Pedals' fate is a mystery.
Pedals, if you are indeed dead, know that you were too good for this world. May you have lots of four-legged fun in Bear Heaven.