GRAND FORKS, ND – It’s the mystery of the missing UND mascot.
If you were a UND fan in the early 90s, you may remember Thunder the Bleacher Creature. But Thunder isn't in the bleachers. He's been missing for quite a while and now a group of alumni seriously want him back.
Nobody is quite sure what happened to Thunder or where he went. The last time he was seen was in the Hyslop Sports Center in the spring of 1994. When the cheer and dance team returned to school in the fall of 1994, Thunder was nowhere to be found. Recently, someone posted a photo of him on social media and alumni went wild, that's why the search is on.
While current students may not know Thunder, those who were here in the early 90s know him very well.
Shannon O'Connor said "That mascot comes up in conversation quite often even though it hasn’t been on the field or court since '94."
Thunder was an unofficial secondary mascot used by the university to lift crowd spirits at sporting events.
"It was a game mascot that was just meant to be fun at the games. Football, basketball, people could request it for birthday parties and things like that, local appearances, " says O'Connor
But Thunder has been missing ever since 1994. Cheer and dance alumni think it was misplaced, or accidentally taken over the summer. Now they are pushing to have Thunder returned home, so they can put a piece of the school's history on display.
There's a reason O'Connor is leading the charge.
“I was the original bleacher creature. It was introduced at a UND-NDSU football game,” says O'Connor
So if it turns out the mascot costume was stolen, will charges be pressed? Heck no! And those are O'Connor's words. They say this isn't about placing blame, they just want a piece of history back.