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The Secret of the Saucers, by Orfeo M. Angelucci, [1955], at

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Not long after my publication of the paper a new aspect of my experiences with the saucers developed. On the afternoon of March 3, 1953 I was sitting alone in the kitchen, reading. I was dully aware of the steady drone of an airplane which continued for some time. The sound apparently was coming from the west. Gradually it dawned upon me that the sound was too steady and too unwavering for an ordinary aircraft.

Curiously, I got up and looked out the door. Coming from the north I saw what appeared to be an ordinary small aluminum airplane. From where I was standing in the doorway there was nothing unusual in the sound of the craft as it assumed the normal crescendo of direct approach. I stepped out of doors and watched it fly directly overhead Until it was fairly in the face of the sun—when suddenly and astoundingly the plane was no longer there! Just as mysteriously the sound of its motor ceased abruptly too. I never saw the plane again. Confused, I went back into the house. Obviously the craft was not a flying disk, but a conventional type aircraft, for I had not experienced any of the unpleasant physical symptoms that a flying disk invariably produces in my body.

Four days later about five o'clock in the afternoon

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[paragraph continues] I was accompanying Jane Vanderlick, a neighbor who is employed at the Los Feliz Theatre cafe. We were walking to the cafe where Jane was going to open it half an hour early that day. We were laughing and talking when Jane noticed an airplane nearby in the sky, flying south. It seemed just an ordinary airplane of the most common type: "Maybe that's a flying saucer, Orfeo!"

I thought she was kidding me and replied: "Not you too, Jane!"

But her eyes were serious. "I mean it, Orfeo. There's something peculiar about that airplane."

For the first time I scrutinized the craft carefully. After a moment I had to admit there was something unusual about it. It appeared extremely dull and flat-surfaced and did not reflect any of the rays of the setting sun as it ordinarily should have done.

While we were both staring at it the airplane suddenly vanished right before our eyes in a clear and cloudless sky! The sound of its motor ceased just as abruptly. Both of us stood in our tracks. Jane stared at me. "What happened to that airplane, Orfeo?"

I shook my head and then replied slowly: "I wasn't going to mention it to anyone, Jane, but I saw the same thing happen four days ago. I don't know what it means!"

We stood there for some minutes our eyes vainly searching the skies for some trace of the vanished plane. I requested Jane to remember every detail of the strange incident. She promised that she would. If you ask her about it today, she will verify

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the experience just as I have related it to you.

Several days later I was with a group of employees sitting around the Lockheed Plant. It was about five minutes before four in the afternoon. We were waiting for the shifts to change preparatory to going on duty. My good friend, but most confirmed skeptic, Richard Butterfield, was with us. While we were talking idly, an apparently ordinary two-engine airplane came into view over the hills.

Butterfield's attention was attracted to the craft. He arose from the bench and stared up at it as though he was spellbound. His behavior reminded me immediately of Jane Vanderlick's actions a few days previously. Her eyes had been attracted to that particular plane just as Butterfield's eyes were now drawn to this one. Yet neither of the planes had any effect upon me. The crowd all noticed Butter-field's deep absorption in the small plane. Some of them started laughing and began ribbing him. I remember someone shouting: "Look! He ain't never seen an airplane before!" But Butterfield paid no attention. Finally, almost as though talking to himself, he said: "What is that?"

Several voices helpfully jibed in with wise-cracks about his being sorely in need of an optician's advice. One fellow remarked scathingly: "Any dope can see it's nothing but an ordinary two-engine airplane."

I didn't say anything, for I had noticed by then how flat-toned the craft was and how it failed to reflect the rays of the afternoon sun.

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Suddenly there was an instantaneous flash that appeared to envelope the plane. When the flash was over there was no sign of a plane to be seen anywhere in the sky. The droning of its motors too had ceased. Many of the group had seen the phenomenon. They were startled and confused and everyone started talking at once trying to explain just what had happened. Others continued to stare into the skies searching for the vanished plane.

Butterfield dazedly brushed his hand across his eyes. It seemed difficult for him to come back to the norm of this world. He didn't say much, but for a long time after we had gone on the job he appeared to be in deep thought. I didn't volunteer any explanations, for the sudden disappearance of the plane in a brilliant flash was a new development for me. I kept mulling it over in my mind as well as the two previous experiences in which I had seen airplanes simply disappear into thin air. But I didn't give the incidents too much thought as I had more than enough to do to try and unscramble the puzzle of my previous experiences with the extraterrestrials without adding more problems.

Within a week most of those who had seen the plane disappear had either forgotten the incident or had figured out some explanation that satisfied them. I saw then that the human mind does not want to believe anything it cannot understand; it will rationalize to any extent rather than face the unknown.

As the weeks passed I continued to be ribbed more

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and more. Some of my fellow workers were even inferring that I was lying just for cheap publicity. I would joyfully have dropped the whole thing like a red-hot coal, if I had not had the deep sense of loyalty and responsibility to those Greater Beings that neither I nor my fellows could begin to understand.

As the situation became more unpleasant at the plant, I finally decided to turn in my notice; for by then my experiences were fairly well-known throughout Southern California and thus I was in for constant ridicule. I knew I'd either have to shut up about space visitors or else quit my job. I decided on the latter.

My last three weeks at work were rather memorable. On August 14th Ernie Oxford and I were working on an airplane part outside the building. He, like all of the others when they got me alone, was harping on the space visitors and my "wild story in that Twentieth Century Times." He was contentiously declaring that neither he or his girl friend could swallow such a story.

I told him that it was his right to believe only what he wished to believe. Then I suggested that we forget the subject and concentrate on the job we had to do. But Ernie couldn't be stopped. He kept on telling me what a big mistake I was making.

While he was berating me, I looked toward the Burbank mountains and there directly over a ridge top was a flying saucer. I touched Ernie on the shoulder and pointed to the saucer. He dropped his

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tools and stared. Don Quinn, working nearby, saw us gazing into the sky and came running over.

While we were watching the thing it appeared suddenly to "flip" and vanished. Ernie kept asking: "Where did it go?" And after that experience he was quiet for a while. Then he began talking about the saucers and nothing else. He still didn't believe my story, but he knew he had actually seen a saucer.

Friday, August 21st, at 9:15 in the evening, the entire shift was hard at work. My mind was preoccupied and I was busy on an airplane part. Suddenly a tremor passed over me. I knew it could mean only one thing. I put down my tools and walked to the huge door, which was open only about a foot. As I looked out into the night I saw a light in the skies which appeared to be approaching the plant. While I watched, the light stopped in midair and changed from amber to red. There was no doubt in my mind about what it was.

I called to some of the fellows in the plant and beckoned them to join me. A number of them hurried over and we pushed open the door and went outside. All who came were rewarded. Every one of the men saw the red disk hanging overhead in the sky. While they were staring I glanced at their faces and I was deeply impressed with what I saw. Momentarily, they were like changed men. Wonder, awe, and belief were in their faces. Thus I was struck with the realization of what the mere sight of a single disk can do to the thinking of a number of persons.

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While I was watching their reactions, they all turned suddenly and looked questioningly at me. I glanced up into the sky to see that the disk had vanished and only the moon and the stars were overhead. I asked where the disk had gone and all of them started to tell me.

From the many explanations I learned that the saucer had appeared to move until it was directly below the moon where it began to ascend. As it ascended it changed in color from red to amber and then to the silvery color of the moon. As it climbed higher its color became indistinguishable from the moon so that they could not tell what actually happened to it. But it had vanished. All of that had happened while I was watching their faces.

We trouped back in to work and all of the men were quiet and thoughtful. At the ten minute break I told them that on the following night at the second break I was going to ask each one of them to tell his story of what he had seen.

Every man told precisely the same story. In all there were twelve men. I failed somehow to get the names of two of the fellows but here are the names of the other nine: Dave Donegan, Al Durand, Dave Remick, Michael Gallegos, Richard Becker, Richard McGinley, Bruce Bryan, Ernie Oxford and Louis Pasko. Every one of these men will affirm the details of this sighting. The phenomenon did not happen fast; they all had plenty of time to observe and impress details on their minds.

All of them believed they had seen a flying saucer.

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[paragraph continues] Hence, I was enabled to leave my job with much of the stigma of untruth taken from the account of my experiences I had printed in all good faith in my Twentieth Century Times.

Among those twelve men there are two who are still deeply perplexed. They are Ernie Oxford and Michael Gallegos, for they had seen me drop my tools and go to the door as though beckoned by an unseen force. They said I behaved as though I were under a spell. Both of them started involuntarily to follow me, but on second thought remained on the job until I called them to come out.

Both of them insist that I must have received a message of some kind from the disk. When I told them that it was only a physical reaction and a deep intuitive feeling that space visitors were near, they believed I was holding something back from them. For they said that for a moment they too had felt something indescribable. With that I agree fully and I was happy that I was no longer alone.

Friday, August 28th was my last work night at Lockheed. I was outside working on an airplane part. That night Don Quinn was my partner. He was among those most skeptical of my saucer experiences and like the others he always insisted upon talking about them when we were together. He was telling me what a big mistake I was making in giving up my job and getting myself generally ridiculed. But I was used to such talk, and let him talk on. I glanced up into the sky and saw a silvery disk moving southeastward along the mountain rim.

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[paragraph continues] I immediately called Don's attention to it. He dropped his tools and stared and immediately began demanding to know what it was. "Why does it behave that way?" "How can it hang in the air like that?" I didn't reply to any of his questions.

Suddenly, it too just disappeared. Poor Don stared at me incredulous and bewildered. He admitted its flight characteristics were like nothing he had ever seen or heard of; yet he would not fully go along with the flying saucer explanation. Actually, he could not quite believe his own eyes. Thus seeing is not always believing. For I have seen other persons actually see a saucer and refuse to believe the evidence of their own sight.

It was during August that many of the strange events included in this chapter occurred. It was also in August that a revealing press release came through International News Service which recalled to my mind those cases of the airplanes which mysteriously vanished in thin air. The news item follows:


Washington, Aug. 1 (INS). An Air Force spokesman disclosed today that roughly twelve unidentified airplanes have penetrated the U. S. defense perimeter in the Arctic within the last year.

The spokesman said that the "invaders" were not identified as Russian so no protests could be made to Soviet authorities.

Some of the planes were tracked on radarscopes while others were seen to give off white vapor

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streaks. But before U. S. fighter pilots could give chase, they would mysteriously disappear out of radar range, the spokesman said.

He asserted that the "raiders" crossed the edge of the U. S. radar perimeter in Greenland and Alaska, but added they also flew elsewhere over the North American continent.

The Air Force has given pilots strict orders not to fire upon any unidentified plane unless a "hostile" act has been committed or is about to be, such as a bomber flying over U. S. territory with its bomb-bay doors open.

Could it be that those mysterious "disappearing airplanes" I had seen had penetrated the U. S. defense perimeter in the Arctic?

On the following day a counter-release came through International News Service. This counter-release negated all of the information given out in the first release.

These contradictory reports followed an already definitely established pattern. Official news releases of a mystifying nature concerning the saucers are invariably followed up by counter releases or actual retractions of previous statements.

As irritating and confusing as such contradictory reports are to the public, nevertheless this method of handling UFO information by the authorities is best for everyone concerned. For with a little thought, it is clear that such mystifying news stories without an official damper placed upon them immediately, might easily flare up into a nationwide

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conflagration of panic and hysteria. Official headquarters would be snowed under with avalanches of telegrams, letters, phone calls and personal inquiries. Thus only further confusion would result.

The story of the extra-terrestrials is one that no one can or will ever be able to finish with any degree of finality. It is my sincere personal belief that the Air Force and other responsible offices have responded to and handled the problems of space visitors precisely as those visitors have anticipated and desired them to do. As more and more thinking persons realize this significant fact, we will be prepared for greater revelations to come.

Perhaps it would be well to state here that in the cases of disappearing aircraft I do not believe the .ships dematerialize or dissolve into nothingness, as it would appear. Being composed primarily of a crystalline substance the ships may give the illusion of complete transparency or, if so controlled, they can be rendered entirely opaque. Thus, also, they can manifest any color or combination of colors, depending upon the energy employed and its control on the molecular substance of the crystal body.

It is no problem for the crystal disks to project visual images of ordinary aircraft and similarly to produce the auditory vibrations of aircraft engines. These projections may be easily picked up on a radar screen.

Next: Chapter VII. Flying Saucer Convention In Hollywood