René Dahinden was born on August 22, 1930, in Weggis, Switzerland. He moved to British Columbia in 1953 where he heard a radio report about an upcoming 1954 Daily Mail expedition to the Himalayas to search for the yeti. As Rene Dahinden recalls, after listening to the CBS news broadcast, he turned to his boss, Wilbur Willich, and said, "Now wouldn’t that be something to be on the hunt for that thing?" Mr. Willich’s response would change Rene’s life forever; he said, "Hell, you don’t have to go that far. They got them things in British Columbia."
Dahinden was the first researcher to show the Patterson-Gimlin film in the former Soviet Union and he worked hard to see that the film got the scientific attention he felt it deserved. He wrote one book (with Don Hunter) during the course of his research entitled "Sasquatch," which was published in 1975.
In the award winning 1999 documentary Sasquatch Odyssey, Dahinden was portrayed as one of the Four Horsemen of Sasquatchery, along with Grover Krantz, Peter Byrne and John Green, a British Columbian researcher who joined René on many of his field excursions. Before he passed away Dahinden acquired rights to some of the photographic images from the Patterson-Gimlin film, a process that occupied much of his time in legal and copyright affairs. Today his estate still owns significant rights to the film.
René Dahinden died at 8:42 p.m. Pacific Daylight Time on April 18, 2001, after a two-year battle with prostate cancer.
Rene' and I became friends after he invited me to his and Green's camp (I first became acquainted with John Green there) and Rene' and I took the night shift searching the area and listening for any activity of the three Sasquatch's witnessed there numerous times. (I lived only 7 miles from all the activity recorded there).
We remained good friends until his death, Rene' ended up owning 100 percent rights to the still photo's of the Patterson film, he was business partners with Roger Patterson after Patterson filmed the female Sasquatch at Bluff Creek California in October1967 and until Patterson's death in 1972. Rene' taught me a great deal both about the Sasquatch "he would tell me I was good in the bush"