Oscar Wills, 57, was an operating engineer at the Central Illinois
Public Service Company's power generating station on the Mississippi
River at Grand Tower, illinois. He was on duty when another employee,
Willis Hughes, a turbine operator, telephoned from his home in Grand
Tower to ask Wills to check on something that was hovering over or near
the station's 66,000-volt transformer yard.
Wills went out the north door of the power generating station and
immediately saw an object approximately 1,500' high over the yard. He
estimated the object's size at 25' in diameter (250 yards away). He
described the object as a ring of lighted panels or windows with
definite spacing between windows, each emitting pulsating light varying
from a dark red-to-orange-to-white sequenced in a clockwise rotation
like a theator marquee. The pulsations gave the impression the object
was spinning clockwise, but the window separators remained stationary.
Wills said the object was doughnut-shaped, or more like a wedding band,
since only the lighted panels were visible.
Wills walked to within 150 yards of the transformer bank, viewing
the object with great curiosity. Then he became a little apprehensive
and decided to return to the Power Plant and ask two other employees on
duty to come out to witness the phenomenon.
<>As he retraced his steps, the object which had been hovering
over the transformer bank, started moving directly toward him, and
passed over his head.
As the object darted noiselessly past the northwest corner of the
building, he lost sight of it for a moment as the Plant building
obstructed his viewing area. He walked rapidly around to the west side
of the Plant, facing the Mississippi River, and noted the object was
now hovering directly over the middle (No. 2) of the three water
pumping station buildings. He walked up to the rarnp to the purnp
station house and on to the sea wall protecting the Plant from the
river. He was now again directly under the object. Wills said it
would take a circular object 5' in diameter at arm's length to cover it
at this point.
After watching for 7 to 8 minutes, the PA system called Wills back to
the telephone within the Plant. It was Willis Hughes, who wanted to
know what Oscar ould see from his vantage point. Willis cut the
conversation short so he and the other two men could go out to view the
The object was gone. In 25-30 minutes 3-4 jets made 8-10 sweeps of the
area about 2-3 minutes apart. The arest base is is Scott at Bellville.