The passage below comes from our 2007 book, Witness to Roswell, pages 176-179 in the chapter titled, "It looks like something landed here!" It also appears in our new, 2009 edition in the chapter titled, "We Both Know What Happened Out There," pages 198-201.
CIC Agent Lewis "Bill" Rickett
Certainly, one of the most important military witnesses to flip was the retired Army Counter Intelligence Corps Master Sergeant Lewis S. "Bill" Rickett. Rickett died in his Florida home in 1992, but not before he became a cooperating witness to Roswell investigators by telling them what he knew about the 1947 Roswell eventswhich was plenty. Because of Rickett, we have another firsthand witness to the strange wreckage and the suggestion of a second (or third?) UFO crash site other than the Corona site, closer to Roswell. Because of Rickett, we know that the Air Force hired University of New Mexico meteor expert, Dr. Lincoln La Paz, in September of 1947 to try to determine the speed and trajectory at the time of impact of the crashed UFO. According to Rickett, he drove La Paz all over New Mexico for the better part of a month on this project, taking measurements and soil samples and interviewing local ranchers. La Paz's conclusion was that the crashed craft was an extraterrestrial device. Because of Rickett, we know that there were at least two formal reports written about the Roswell UFO crash, one by the aforementioned Dr. La Paz and one by his boss, counterintelligence Captain Sheridan Cavitt. Because of Rickett, we know that Cavitt, contrary to his statements to investigators right up to his death in 1999 that he was not involved at all in the Roswell events of July 1947, was heavily involved. Rickett confirmed that it was Cavitt who had accompanied Marcel and Brazel back to Brazel's ranch on that fateful Sunday, July 6, 1947 (Cavitt had denied ever meeting Brazel). Cavitt was also involved at the UFO impact sitenot a balloon site as he told Air Force investigators in 1994.
According to Rickett, Cavitt asked him to go with him to a place "in the boondocks." "I don't believe what I've seen, and I just thought it would be advisable for someone else to see it," he told Rickett. They drove in a staff car to a remote site about 45 minutes out of Roswell. According to Rickett, the site itself was of generally flat terrain with low, rolling bluffs. He recognized the provost marshall from the RAAF as well as a contingent of MPs ringing the area with weapons drawn. Also evident were about 60 or so pieces of what appeared to be very thin aluminum scattered about. As Rickett walked the site under the approving eye of Cavitt, he was both amazed and bewildered at what he was seeing: "It looks to me like something landed here," he said. "But if it landed here, I don't see any tracks. I don't know how anything could have landed here and not leave tracks." (At the Foster ranch debris field site, witnesses reported seeing a long gouge and several skid-marks, so this was clearly another site, thus confirming Gen. Exon's observation.) As for the strange wreckage, it was very similar to that found on the Foster ranchthin, light, and strong. Rickett picked up a piece of it, about 4 inches by 10 inches, placed it over his knee, and tried to bend it. He couldn't. Cavitt and Easley laughed at him because they had tried and failed at it too. Rickett had never seen a piece of metal that thin that could not be bent. "The more I looked at it, I couldn't imagine what it was," he said.7
Two months later, in September of 1947, Rickett was given another field assignment. He was ordered to assist Manhattan Project scientist Dr. Lincoln La Paz, from the University of New Mexico at Albuquerque. La Paz was a famous meteor expert, as well as a nuclear scientist, and had just arrived at the base in Roswell after being briefed in Washington, D.C. Their special assignment: to determine the speed and trajectory of the unknown object that had crashed northwest of town.
Rickett described to our investigation that he and La Paz discovered a possible touchdown point about 5 miles northwest of the debris field on the old Foster ranch. Not only did they recover a small number of pieces identical to the material Rickett had handled before, they were startled to find that the sand in the high-desert terrain had crystallized, apparently as a result of exposure to tremendous heat. There was also one last item discovered that didn't match any of the debris described heretofore: a seamless black box. Rickett told us that it was a little bigger than a shoebox, like shiny plastic, and didn't weigh anything. Try as they may, "there was no getting inside of it, that's if there even was an inside," laughed Rickett. 8
They spent a total of three weeks interviewing witnesses and making calculations, which were contained in La Paz's official report. Rickett never had a chance to see the document, because it, along with the new physical evidence, was delivered directly to the Pentagon. The professor did confide to the plain-clothes intelligence specialist that, based on all the new data and hardware they'd collected and tested, the original object was an "unmanned interplanetary probe."9
Sgt. Rickett continued to search for answers. Unfortunately, his supervising officer, Capt. Cavitt, refused to discuss the matter with him.
One year later, Rickett met once again with Dr. La Paz, this time in Albuquerque. La Paz remained convinced that the object that exploded near Corona was from another planet. In all his confidential meetings with various government agencies, he said he had learned nothing that contradicted that position.10
The very next month, while on assignment in Washington, D.C., Rickett met with fellow counterintelligence agent Joe Wirth. Rickett asked about the status of the materials recovered at Roswell the previous year. According to Wirth, the government's top researchers had yet to identify its metallurgic makeup and still "hadn't been able to cut it."11
One can well imagine Bill Rickett's surprise when, after more than 40 years of silence, he received a very unexpected evening phone call in 1991 from his former commanding officer. "Happy Birthday, Bill," exclaimed the voice on the other end of the phone, "Its Cav, your old boss." After exchanging pleasantries, Cavitt queried, "Have you been talking to anyone about what happened back in 1947?" Rickett identified one of the coauthors, whom Cavitt had met as well, and Cavitt pressed the issue, "What have you been telling him?" Pressing further, Cavitt added, "We both know what really happened out there, don't we, Bill?" To which Rickett responded, "We sure do." After a short pause Cavitt responded, "Well, maybe someday...Goodbye, Bill."
Lewis "Bill" Rickett, who passed away in October 1993, never heard from the officer who introduced him to the Roswell Incident again. 12