Form: 97 Research
Date: Mon, 01 Jan 2007 07:20:40 -0600
From: Francis Ridge <nicap@insightbb.com>
Subject:  Grand Tower, Illinois Close Encounter, March 22, 1973
Cat: 1
To: CE, SHG

730322 9:15 PM. GRAND TOWER, IL. Cl.
Did the Piedmont UFO Visit Grand Tower? - The Star-Beacon, Ashtabula, Ohio

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 directly 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 object.

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.

(Source: SL-66,7)