Two Critical UFO Events in History

by Larry Holcombe

After completing the manuscript for my new book, The Presidents and UFOs: A secret History from FDR to Obama, and turning it over to my publisher, I realized, with much consternation, that I had overlooked including two very important UFO events in my work. I felt that it was important to list all of the major UFO events that occurred during the administrations from FDR to present, and realizing that I had inadvertently omitted two important events was cause for concern and embarrassment. When I realized my error, editing had reached a point not allowing for such a major inclusion into the work. To say the least I was extremely distressed with my oversight.

The two events, the reported crash of a flying saucer near Aztec, New Mexico, in March, 1948, and the RB-47 encounter of July 17,1957 are very important stories concerning presidents and UFOs.

The Aztec UFO Events:

The Aztec Event at Heart Canyon near Aztec, New Mexico is by far the more controversial of the two events. The controversy rests with some problems involving witness testimony and the background of others who were involved in the original story by columnist, Frank Scully. However, the story has remained in play by work of researchers, William Steinman, and, Leonard Stringfield, and more recently has recently gained great traction by the hard work of researchers Scott and Suzanne Ramsey as reported in their book, The Aztec Incident: Recovery at Hart Canyon.

TomatoMan1; UFO Events

Just one of the images in a series of photographs that supposedly document the charred remains of a head and torso from the 1948 UFO crash, which were claimed to be extraterrestrial. The photos were taken by a former Naval photographer who was flown in to document the site. Image is in the public domain via UFO Evidence.

A short synopsis of the event is that a saucer of about 100 feet in diameter was discovered by oil workers sent to Hart Canyon to extinguish a brush fire threatening oil wells in the area. Nearby was a strange craft resting on a mesa. The oil workers inspected the craft, which appeared to be made of a light but extremely strong metal without seams or fasteners of any kind. A small broken porthole was located and the workers could see a number of small occupants that seemed to be burned or charred.

The military soon arrived and sealed the area. The men, along with two police officers who had been summoned by the workers were admonished by military personnel what they saw was a matter of great national security and highly classified. They were told to never to speak of the event to anyone. They may even have been threatened as has been reported by a number of individuals witnessing UFO events from that time period.

This is a very complicated story with limited witnesses, most of which are now deceased. However, newly discovered evidence along with the dedicated work of researchers Scott and Suzanne Ramsey over the last 10 years have started to convert many who thought this event was a hoax.

The RB-47 UFO Incident–July 17, 1957:

Unlike the Aztec incident above, this encounter is well documented by government records, it was seen by the flight crew, tracked by state of the art electronic equipment on board the aircraft, and tracked by ground radar. The event lasted almost one and a half hours.

The RB-47 was a four engine jet bomber loaded with electronic countermeasure equipment and manned by six officers. The purpose of the craft was to detect enemy radar, and this was to be a training mission before deploying to Germany.

The mission started at Forbes AFB in Topeka, Kansas. It was to fly south across Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, turning east and out over the Gulf of Mexico, turning north towards Gulfport, Mississippi, then west near Meridian, Mississippi, back towards Ft. Worth and then home.

While nearing Gulfport the #2 electronics officer picked up a signal he first thought was ground radar. It soon became apparent to him this was no ground radar as it was moving. Within short order the object caught the plane that was flying a 500 MPH, made a complete circle around the RB-47 then the signal faded. The time of the incident was about 4:00 AM CST. For whatever reason, the #2 officer did not report the incident to the other crewmembers.

A short time later as the plane made its westward turn near Meridian the captain saw a light at his left at his altitude and coming fast in his direction. He gave a command to the crew to brace for evasive action but before he could act the object shot from left to right in front of the cockpit at incredible speed and then blinked out. The pilot advised the crew what the flight deck had observed and it was then that #2 advised of his sighting.

For the next hour these UFO events continued. Ground radar was contacted who advised they were also picking up an uncorrelated target around the RB-47. At one point the pilot asked to be allowed to attempt to intercept the object. When he did the object instantly dropped from 37,000 feet to 15,000 feet. Low on fuel the plane had to return to Forbes AFB and the UFO faded out over Oklahoma.

This incident is thought by many to be the two most critical UFO events in history because it had visual sighting, on board electronic detection, ground radar detection and the quality of the flight crew.


LARRY HOLCOMBE was first introduced to the world of ufology in the late 1950’s after reading Major Donald Keyhoe’s, Flying Saucers Are Real and Flying Saucers from Outer Space. These books started a 50 plus year study and avocation into mainstream research on the subject. His writing, speaking efforts and interviews now center on bringing light to bear on the continued United States denial and cover-up of UFO issues. He currently resides in Callao, Virginia. His latest work is The Presidents and UFOs: A secret History from FDR to Obama

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Posted in Contemporary History, Military History
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