March 4, 1969; Atlanta/ Elmer, MO
6:40 AM. William Overstreet was a rural mail carrier [going from Elmer, Missouri to Highway 63 so he could turn south and on towards Atlanta, Missouri just a few miles away. The rural road was called "route J". At the time of the incident he was heading east] and was rounding a curve in his truck. About 1/2 mile to his right there was a large reddish colored object traveling 50 feet above the ground. He judged it as 100 feet in diameter. It hesitated briefly, and then made for his vehicle. It took up position in the air over the road, traveling in his same direction slowly. As he closed the distance, a strong white light came from the bottom of the disk and shown on the road. This beam was the full diameter of the object at the top but narrowed to an 8-foot diameter spot as it hit the street. * This beam was extremely hot, and it affected the driver. Also, when the beam shot down, the whole object changed colors. It became bright blue with a red aura about it. There was also a yellow band around it which gave the impression of small racing lights as if the thing were turning. The great brightness made it difficult to see any details, if there were any. His radio was breaking up though not completely out. But when he got right to the edge of the light beam, the radio did quit, and the truck's motor did also. His vehicle then rolled slowly forward as the object moved a small bit further along. Once away from the beam, the radio started again and he was able to restart the truck. The object gradually moved away, once flashing mightily as it crossed a power line. It had changed back to red, as it cruised along in synchronization with the contours of the ground and went out of sight. He said: " I had never believed in them too much until I saw this. Now I know that there is something to these UFOs. I don't know why it was there or where it was going. Neither do I know what it was after I saw it, but I don't care about being that close to another one." (Mike Swords; references: Letter, William Overstreet to NICAP, March 29, 1969; and NICAP case investigation form and collection of correspondence and news articles on the case by Ted Bloecher [NICAP files] and "E-M Effect on Truck in Missouri", APRO Bulletin May/June 1969).
This case takes on a special interest when combined with the case from Lancaster, MO which occurred less than a week later (the 10th, see 1969 Chrono and just up the road a few miles). As you read the Lancaster case, you will note, regarding the light beam, this is the exact opposite of what it was doing. NICAP began with this case to attempt to marshall technical experts to give their opinions on what possibly could have gone on. The case was sent to physicists, a Ford Motor company engineer, James McDonald, Allen Hynek, Ray Fowler--all the heavyweights they could muster. No one could come up with a reasonable theory for what was described. The witness had a different solution for the feedback he was getting--he took a vacation to go fishing in the Ozarks.