NMCC Documents (6)
(Adapted from "CLEAR INTENT", Lawrence Fawcett and Barry Greenwood, page 16-26)
Although it is no longer an active Air Force Base today, in 1975 Loring AFB was a Strategic Air Command Base and a storage site for nuclear weapons. The nukes were stored in a fenced weapons dump consisting of small huts covered with dirt for camouflage from the air. It was patrolled day and night by the 42nd Security Police Squadron.
At 7:45 p.m. on 27 October, 1975, Staff Sgt. Danny K. Lewis was patrolling the weapons dump when he saw an unidentified aircraft nearing the north perimeter of Loring at a low altitude of about 300 feet. Lewis noticed what appeared to be a red navigation light and a white strobe light on the aircraft. As Lewis watched, the craft entered the perimeter of Loring. Meanwhile, in the control tower of the air base, Staff Sgt. James P. Sampley of the 2192nd Communications Squadron was on duty at the radar screen. He got a radar return from an unknown aircraft ten to thirteen miles east-northeast of Loring. Sampley made numerous attempts by radio on all available communications bands, civilian and military, to contact the craft, but he got no response. The unidentified craft began to circle, and came to within 300 yards of the restricted nuclear storage area at a low altitude of 150 feet.
Back at the nuclear weapons dump, Lewis notified his Command Post that an unknown aircraft had penetrated the base perimeter and was within 300 yards of the nuclear weapons area. The base was immediately put on a Security Option 3 alert and Security contacted the tower regarding radar tracking of the aircraft. At 8:45 P.M., Sgt. Grover K. Eggleston began observing the craft on radar from the tower as it began circling ten miles east-northeast of the base. The Wing Commander ordered a ground search and requested air support from Hancock Field, New York and North Bay, Ontario, Canada. Both bases refused to send air support. The Maine State Police and local airport flight services were contacted to attempt to identify the unknown craft, but without results. Intense ground searches produced no results.
The craft continued circling for approximately forty minutes, at which time it broke the pattern and headed toward Grand Falls, New Brunswick, Canada. In the vicinity of Grand Falls, twelve miles from Loring, it vanished from the radar screen. There was no further activity that night, although the base remained on high alert into the next morning. SAC Headquarters was notified.