The following pdf file contains all of the resized case documents, including the searchable text version of the Investigation Activity Log below, and is now housed on the NICAP site for security reasons.


Date of Sighting:  May 18, 1988
Local Time & Time Zone: 7:40 PM CST
Location of Sighting: Nr. New Haven, IL on Hwy 62
Number of Witnesses:      Three
Principal Witness:
Vivian Schaffer,  (55)
Adriel Schaffer,  (57)
Dannah Schaffer (29)
Permission To Use Names: Given

A description of the circumstances surrounding the receipt of the  initial  UFO sighting  information.

Received a call that very evening from the witnesses, residents of Mt. Vernon, Indiana, who reported that they had just observed a strange object a few miles west of the toll bridge on the Wabash River near New Haven, IL. The object was observed for a few seconds at approximately 7:40 PM CST. Object was traveling NE to SW at 50-100' (Form 1 stated 75') skimming the tree-tops (50-100' up) at "tremendous speed", looked "like a shark", gray, 25' long, smaller than a jet. Object had no wings, no sound, tail fins were different (like horizontal stabilzers). There was a jet fighter, most probably a F-4 Phantom, in the area at the time, flying higher, but on a parallel (possible pursuit) course. Witness say jet was seen & heard less than 10-seconds later and "on the same track". It appeared to be looking for the object. Object further described as missile-shaped with a nose slightly turned up slightly with some small fins where the rear horizontal stabilzers would be on a conventional aircraft. Also, there was an indentation or ring near the midpoint where it looked like it was joined together. "It was a missile or something else." Object came within 500', estimated at 100-200'.

Possible military accident? Sounds like the flat trajectory would preclude this. Also, size of object appears to be too large for an accidental aircraft launch. Sounds more like a Tomahawk cruise missile or drone gone haywire.

Need FOIA check on this one. Doesn't sound like UFO.

A brief chronological composite or consolidation of the UFO sighting account(s).

Estimated Speed:     ??? Fast

1. Where were you and what were you doing at the time?

Going to Two Tony's (smorgasboard), Carmi (IL), but it wasn't open on Tuesdays. Seen about 4-miles West of Wabash River bridge on Indiana 62 or Illinois 141.

2. What made you first notice the object?

It flew so close to ground in front of the car.

3. What did you think the object was when you first noticed it?
A Missile.

4. Describe your reactions and actions, during and after the sighting?

We had never seen one before and we talked.

5. Describe the object and its actions.

It flew right over tree tops, fast. Later, a jet flew low. It (object) could move up & down easy as it went. It was light gray (soft) with reddish small ring (See drawing).  (Object) 20-25' long, no trail and silent, 75' or lower in the air, just skimmed trees.

White, shark (like) nose, light gray (body) with red like ring. (Drawing shows upturned nose and side fin).

6. How did you lose sight of the object?

Hidden by trees.

Simple chronologicallog by date, time and place denoting the tasks the FI carried out during the investigation.

10 May 1988. FI-4 completed.

11 May 1988. Two Form 1's mailed out to witnesses.

18 May 1988. Single Form 1 was completed and received here on the 20th. Other priority cases have delayed this investigation and report.

13 Jan 1989. Conducted additional interview to establish credibility of case and reliability of witnesses. Produced computer copy. Re-contacted witnesses about additional signatures. Had been sick. Daughter is teacher and not as easy to catch. Will get signatures of these two witnesses.

A description of the interview and interrogation including the FI's personal impressions of the primary witness and his or her home environment, interests, etc.

13 Jan 1989. Witnesses are not UFO enthusiasts or readers of those types of books. In fact, the conversation in both instances (the one in May of  '88 and this one) stayed right on the incident and no deviations and/or questions about UFOs were noted. The description of the event never varied. It was determined that the object was very close to them and very fast, as they had originally stated.

The circumstances surrounding how, when, and where additional witnesses were located and any subsequent interviews and interrogations including the FI's personal impressions of the witnesses and their home environment, interests, etc.

No other cases reported in vicinity and time span.

A list of what natural or man-made objects were checked in an effort to identify stimulus for the reported UFO is attached to this report. The reasons for rejecting or suspecting each, as being the stimulus, should be clearly noted. Summary is as follows:

Natural Phenomenon, ruled out.

Man-made, possible missile mishap. However, lack of sound or means to stay at low level flight (no operating engine or lift sources, wings) seems to preclude this, allowing for misperceptions, this case should be referred to CAUS for FOIA check.

See attached report.

A list of the persons checked, their comments about the witness's character and their relationship to the witness. This section should include the FI's impressions of the witness personality, credibility, etc.

No references. My impression is much the same after 9-months, that these people, three adults, saw something close-enough and long-enough in duration to construct a detailed drawing.

The result of the overall analysis of the data collected by the FI.

Unidentified. Need FOIA check for military accident.

Possible great significance if not conventional object.

Cross-reference list of all back-up material by date and location of sighting.
Questionnaires Used:

Letter to witnesses, dated 11 May 88
Form 1, General Case
Descriptive drawing of encounter
Map of S. Indiana & Illinois
Source Test
Recording of interview, phone

At this point I am convinced that these people are telling the truth about something they and I, too, have no explanation for. The object was evidently no larger than 20-25 feet long, no farther than 500' (actually considerably less), had no business in the air, let alone cruising along at low-altitude, high speed.

This incident occurred very near a point where F-4's have made low passes and, in one case, two vehicles were disabled by some form of E-M effects. No UFO was observed that time!

At a time when the other two signatures are obtained, this case will be concluded. Copies of this report are being filed as per header, which includes CAUS for possible FOIA check.

Francis L. Ridge
State Director, MUFON-Indiana