I sincerely hope that this book serves at least two purposes: 1) to
illustrate how people like myself can justify the tremendous expense measured
in time and money of chasing down UFO reports, and 2) to remind those
who have forgotten and to educate those who simply don't know that the
history of UFOs indicates that we are dealing with a "nuts and bolts"
UFOs can sometimes appear and disappear as if by magic, but if you
can hit it with a rock or shoot it with a gun and it clanks, its something
real. If you can pick it up on radar, chase it with a jet interceptor,
get gun camera photos of it, its not an apparition. These things land,
leave indentations in the ground, and break off tree limbs. They are
There are other things that look like UFOs but we are not concerned
with them here. Some of these are, in fact, IFOs or Identified Flying
Objects. Some of the other visions belong in other realms; possibly the
Sometime in 1956 a friend of mine handed me a paperback book to read.
I didn't read many books in those days, but this one really got my attention.
I simply couldn't put it down. To say that I was fascinated with it would
be an understatement. That book had a profound effect on my entire life
because it drew me in to the UFO controversy. The book was Edward Ruppelt's
Report on Unidentified Flying Objects. Captain Ruppelt
had been head of Air Force Project Blue Book in the early 1950s. And,
as you will see, these were the years in which the Air Force put its best
foot forward in UFO investigations.
That book convinced me that I just had to, somehow, get involved.
If Earth was being visited by beings from another world, the implications
for humanity were to great to ignore. Even if UFOs didn't physically
exist, something just as important was taking place. To many creditable
people were seeing incredible things.
In October of 1956, NICAP had been incorporated in the District of
Columbia. NICAP was the National Investigations Committee on Aerial Phenomenon.
It was headed by Major Donald E. Keyhoe. It was an impressive group which
included Major Dewey Fournet who was mentioned repeatedly in Ruppelt's
book and who was a member of NICAP's Board of Governors! Major Fournet
was also Headquarters Project Monitor for Project Blue Book and he had
conducted the famous action studies showing that UFOs were intelligently
controlled devices. Indiana's own, Frank Edwards, a well known radio
and TV announcer who wrote several books on UFOs, was also a member of
NICAP's Board of Governors. The very first CIA Director, Vice Admiral
R.H. Hillenkoetter, USN, was also a member of the board.
In 1960 I was living in Vincennes, Indiana where we had a local UFO
study group called CRUFO, Civilian Research Unidentified Flying Objects,
for a couple of years. I also joined NICAP because many of the people
with who Ruppelt worked were involved in it. Ruppelt himself was not
involved because be could not officially work with NICAP because he was
still a reserve Air Force officer in the Air Force Reserve.
On November 17, 1960, the best people we had in the CRUFO study group
became a NICAP subcommittee called Indiana Unit No. 1. There were about
twenty such teams in the country and I was the subcommittee chairman of
Indiana Unit No. 1. Besides me, there were several young men who were
the crux of our group. Jim Catt was our main transportation source and
head of communications. Jim and I had CB radios. Phil Studler was in
charge of public relations. He and his brother had a home photo lab.
Our group was also a civil defense radiological monitoring squad and we
had a complete line of radiation