By Billy Booth
If anyone mentions the word UFO, somewhere in the conversation Roswell will come up. Just as the Hill Abduction Case is used to judge alien abduction reports, Roswell is the bread and butter of Ufology. This one case will keep Ufology going, even through its darkest days. The case is never over, there is never an end to the witness lists, and the discussion goes on and on. Roswell is the very heart of the study of UFOs. This distinction is very well earned.
When the first reports of a crashed alien craft reached the general public, many felt that the long awaited proof of extraterrestrial intelligence had come. The news spread world wide when the Air Force announced that they had a flying saucer in their possession. But hopes were soon dashed, as a second news flash proclaimed that it was nothing more than a weather balloon. The general public felt differently then-they believed anything they were told by officials of our government. This innocent obedience would not work a second time.
Yet, the enormous public interest in the case would be revitalized. After an almost 30 year absence from study, the Roswell case would again take its rightful place in 1976, and since then, it has been as popular as any other case study. Thanks be to Ufologists William Moore, and Stanton R. Friedman, who were studying notes from an interview that Friedman had conducted. The interview was with Jesse Marcel Sr. Intelligence Officer at Roswell Air Force Base, and Lydia Sleppy, who was employed at radio station KOAT at the time of the Roswell crash.
A Lone Rancher:
During the first week of July, 1947 sheep rancher William W. “Mac” Brazel was making his rounds of the Foster Ranch, located near Corona. Brazel served as foreman of the facility. Brazel lived on the ranch in a farm house, although his wife and children lived in Tularosa, to receive better schooling for this children. Brazel would become a major figure in the Roswell case, although he never desired the attention it sent his way.
Brazel, home for the night, was listening to a roaring thunderstorm, not uncommon for his location, but this night it seemed worse than ever. He thought that maybe he had heard an explosion. The next morning, he was out again, checking the livestock, and riding fences for any breaks. A seven-year-old neighbor boy was with him. Riding into an open field, the two horsemen noticed a large area filled with some type of debris or wreckage. The wreckage was tiny pieces of shiny, metallic material. This material was unfamiliar to the rancher.
Marcell Notified of Debris:
Brazel collected some of the unknown debris, and showed it George Wilcox, of the Chaves County Sheriff’s Office. At first, Wilcox thought little of the material, until he began to handle it. It was not like anything he had seen before. Wilcox was concerned enough to call Roswell Army Air Field. He talked to Major Jesse A. Marcel, and explained the situation of the discovery of the material at the Foster ranch. Marcell left the base to come to Roswell and see the material.
After interviewing Brazel, Marcell was on the way to the debris field, accompanied by Army Counter Intelligence Corps officer Sheridan Cavitt and Brazel. Marcell related the events of the search through the debris in his own words:”When we arrived at the crash site, it was amazing to see the vast amount of area it covered… it scattered over an area of about three quarters of a mile long, I would say, and fairly wide, several hundred feet wide. It was definitely not a weather or tracking device, nor was it any sort of plane or missile.”
Headlines Claim “Flying Saucer” Found:
Marcel examined the strange material, and even took some of it home with him. He informed Air Force officials of what he had seen, and Colonel Blanchard gave an order to Colonel Walter Haut, instructing him to inform the media that the Air Force had in its possession a “crashed saucer.” Haut claimed that the saucer debris was sent to the 8th Air Force, under the leadership of General Ramey in Ft. Worth, Texas. Meanwhile, the famous newspaper headlines were released:”RAAF Captures Flying Saucer on Ranch in Roswell Region.”
The shocking admission would soon be retracted, and the flying saucer became a weather balloon.
The Military’s Actions:
Soon, rumors were running rampant at the base, and word was beginning to filter into Roswell about dead alien bodies. Although the military had secured the site of the crash, and supposedly removed every bit of debris, there is never 100% silent obedience for an event this dramatic. Any reasonable person will wonder that if the debris came from a weather balloon, why the secrecy? Front page photographs of so-called weather balloon debris would later be disputed by Marcel as not being the same material he brought to the base.
The Story That Will Not Die:
Although the theories about Roswell are composed of many conflicting accounts, some facts are clear. Something important crashed near Corona-important enough that witnesses were threatened if they revealed what they saw. There are too many witnesses who claim to have seen the alien bodies. There is adequate evidence to assume that autopsies were done on at least one alien body, and probably more.Numerous times, the Air Force has been adamant that there is nothing to the crash, but too many times witnesses have come forward with first hand knowledge of a crashed UFO, dead alien bodies, and a military cover-up.