Date: Tue, 10 Oct 2006 21:50:08 -0400
From: etjean <>
Subject: April 8, 1955; Rockford Case, from the NICAP UFO Investigator
Cat: 1, 11

Dick Hall:
My trusty 3 x 5 fle cards from the 1950s indicate that John C. Gregory, Civil Defense Director, Rockford, Illinois, reported the incident to Major Keyhoe, possibly in 1955 or early 1956 just before the formation of NICAP. His report or letter was filed chronologically in the NICAP sighting files and theoretically should be in the CUFOS/NICAP files. He reported that on Apr. 8, 1955, a silver disc-shaped object had come up from behind a jet interceptor and passed it at high speed. The object was said to be 1/4 mile in diameter! The pilot shot it down. The note on the file card says: "Gregory claims AF has movies of entire operation."

Jean Waskiewicz:
I have added the text from the only 3 issues of the NICAP UFO Investigator that mentioned this case to this page.


Rockford case NICAP Investigator Issues search results


The U.F.O. Investigator
Vol.1 No. 2     August-September, 1957 p 7

In case three, Air Force jets opened fire on a UFO which was circling a weather balloon near Rockford, Illinois. According to Ground Observer Corps witnesses, the jets set the balloon afire and the UFO escaped.

NICAP is investigating all phases of this situation and will report its findings in the October issue, together with the Air Force answers.


The U.F.O. Investigator
Vol.1 No. 8     June, 1959 p 8

Q. has the AF ever admitted attacking UFOs?

A. Yes. In December, 1949, Major Jeremiah Boggs, AF Intelligence, publicly stated that in 1947 AF pilots had been ordered to down a UFO by any means, for examination. He admitted one case of shooting at a UFO in New Jersey; this admission to the present Director of NICAP was in the presence of Brig. Gen. Sory Smith, Director of AF Information. According to Capt. E. J. Ruppelt, an AF F-86 jet pilot fired on a UFO in the summer of 1952. In April, 1955, AF jets fired on a UFO circling a weather balloon near Rockford, Ill. In July, 1957, ATIC, in an official letter, admitted that AF pilots had fired on objects at first thought to be UFOs, but later found to be conventional objects.Queried by NICAP, ATIC first said the conventional objects were foo fighters.This was the name given to UFOs sighted in World War II. When this fact was pointed out by NICAP, ATIC refused further discussion and advised asking AF HQ for an answer. This was done, in writing, but no answer was ever received.


The U.F.O. Investigator
Vol.1 No. 10   July-August, 1960 p 2

Q. Have AF pilots ever shot at, or ever been ordered to fire at UFOs?

A. No case on record.

Recorded facts:
On April 8, 1955, AF jets fired on a UFO circling a balloon near Rockford, Ill. Missing the UFO, the jets set the balloon on fire. (Confirmed by GOC spotters, including J. C. Gregory, Rockford Civil Defense official.)

On Dec. 30, 1949, the following statement was made by spokesman Maj. Jeremiah Boggs, USAF Intelligence, with the approval of General Sory Smith, Director of AF Public Information, who was present: At first the AF was so anxious to bring down a UFO for examination that pilots were told to get one by any means possible. Some pilots, Boggs added, had fired on UFOs for this reason.