Abductions and Encounters, part one: Beginning Awareness of Activities and Agendas
Updated: Mar 3
by Mike Jamieson
In the paper highlighting samples of close encounter of the third kind cases from 1951 through 1961, two well-known cases in particular were noted as representing a preliminary view of cases commonly characterized as "alien abductions". See:
In that same paper, and the others also describing close encounter of the third kind cases from earlier time periods, there were also examples of abduction incidents that didn't become as well known as the Villas-Boas case in 1957 from Brazil and the Hill case in 1961 from New Hampshire.
The 1961 Hill case received high profile attention in 1966 with John Fuller's book, "The Interrupted Journey", and it's serialization in Look magazine. The Hill story didn't appear to inspire copy-cat stories shared by others, as Thomas Bullard, an university academic and folklorist, notes (UFO Encyclopedia, vol 1, pg 3): "Despite the wide audience and public interest, no further abduction reports followed in the immediate wake of Fuller's book."
Bullard in the above "Abduction Phenomenon" article for the 2018 edition of The UFO Encyclopedia noted that in 1967 there was a case involving a sighting by a Nebraska police officer who experienced 20 minutes of missing time, but it would be not until the fall of 1973 during a peak in close encounter activity that more abduction cases came to the public's awareness (with some not heavily publicized, and a few very heavily so).
One such case of a October 1973 encounter was later reported by a divorced mother of seven children, who was living somewhat isolated on the outskirts of Lehi, Utah. Pat Roach thought a prowler had awakened her and the children, she seeing a bright light shining through the window from an open field and hearing her cat hollering and a dog outside barking. She called a neighbor who in turn called the cops. The cops shortly arrived and checked the area. Nothing out of the ordinary was found.
Two of Pat's daughters told her after the cops left that the prowler was in fact an alien, a "spaceman". This was something she didn't remember, so she was skeptical. She did get apparently curious a year and a half later when reading of an abduction case in a UFO newstand magazine ("UFO Report"). At that time she wrote to the magazine with the editor there passing on her letter to Kevin Randle, at the time field investigator in the Tucson area for the Aerial Phenomena Research Organization (APRO).
Randle initially confirmed basic facts with the Lehi police concerning their midnight response to the Roach household in October 1973. The police also noted her good reputation. Randle next went to visit the family to interview them. He was joined by APRO research director James Harder who hypnotized Pat after the interviews.
One of the daughters (Debbie) had great recall, naturally without any need for hypnosis. Nevertheless, "Randle noticed that 'the more I questioned her, the less she remembered. I had the impression that she had been programmed to forget if anyone outside the family began to press her about her experience' ". (Jerome Clark, UFO Encyclopedia, vol 2, pg1012)
Debbie saw her sister Bonnie and two neighbor boys standing in line. Onboard she saw a floating table and reported that they communicated telepathically (they "thought at me with their heads"). One of the beings told Debbie she wouldn't be sick anymore, which her mother told investigators was so, that an illness had cleared up suddenly that night.
Bonnie was hypnotized by James Harder and reported seeing her mother naked on a floating table. There were small humanoids (a little over four feet tall) with white pasty skin and huge eyes, gloved hands of two long fingers and a claw like thumb. They wore shiny outfits. Surprisingly, like her mother's hypnotic recall, she saw a human male with the small humanoid figures.
Harder successfully hypnotized the mother. Pat was able to recall waking up to a bright light shining on her and two thin and small humanoid beings standing over her. She saw Debbie, Bonnie, and son Shawn struggling with other short and thin humanoids.
The beings seemed cold or business-like but she felt they were trying to convey friendliness. Badly nearshighted, she was still able to see that she was in a round, bright room with four or five small humanoids. The beings communicated with telepathy. She also saw a bald man wearing horn-rimmed glasses and black clothing.
In the room were computer-like devices and liquid-filled containers. The beings telepathically directed her to undress which she reluctantly did. They next had her on a table and attached wires to an arm and a leg. They performed a gynecological exam and without pain inserted a needle into her abdomen and also head.
During the exam she had the visionary experience of being on a cliff observing the ocean and waves rythimically hitting the shore. With her voice becoming a quiet monotone in the hypnotic session at this point in the recall, Randle and Harder speculated that the beings were utilizing a form of hypnosis during the exam.
The beings also asked her all sorts of questions about "what I love, what I hate, what animals I like. They asked me about my family....They need us....I don't know why they need us. They're very intent. They need information quickly. I don't know if it's my imagination but they [have limited time]". Pat did not have a favorable impression of the beings.
She was floated back to inside her house and saw that her kids had also been returned. The beings retrieved a briefcase-sized machine and left. Pat's next memories involved her waking up with her son Kent screaming and she having vague memories of a prowler and bright light.
Randle and Harder found the Roaches to be intelligent and sincere. They questioned community members who all attested to their good character. Pat Roach was on the verge of obtaining her teaching credential at the time of this investigation. For awhile wanted to remain anonymous so in initial literature was known as Pat Price.
UFO historian Jerome Clark made this key point about this case (UFO Encyclopedia, 3rd edition, volume 2, pg 1012): "The Roach abduction case is also interesting because it anticipates elements of the abduction Phenomenon either obscure or entirely unknown in 1975..."
While the Roach case was published just in UFO field literature, thus with very few of the public aware of it, a few months after Randle and Harder visited the Roaches in July 1975, a case involving a logging crew in Arizona became highly publicized national news when the crew chief went missing for five days after the group witnessed an apparent UFO.
The story is that the crew chief was hit by some sort of beam and the crew went quickly off scene in the truck. Travis Walton did return, claiming to have been on board an alien craft during those days of him missing.
The story is famous to this day, the subject of books and movies. And, there are many issues and elements of the story that have caused many to question it's veracity.
There was another abduction event from October 1973, that like the later Walton event of November 5 1975 sparked national headlines, which on the other hand actually gained in credibility as key evidence surfaced in later years (the release of the sheriff covertly taping the two witnesses and others witnessing the craft). Two shipyard workers from Pascagoula, Mississippi, Charles Hickson and Calvin Parker, were fishing at night when they were abducted by odd looking beings and examined.
On October 20 1975 NBC aired a TV movie based on the Betty and Barney Hill story and that presented a quandry as Thomas Bullard noted (volume 1 of UFO Encyclopedia, 3rd edition, pg 3): "So began a controversy that has continued down to the present---does publicity create abduction stories, or does publicity guide abductees toward awareness and help?"
As it turns out, many abductees admitted that widely published or aired accounts resonated with their own puzzling experiences (of such things like missing time associated with a UFO sighting) and caused them to seek out investigators to help uncover possible repressed memories.
But prior to the NBC tv movie there were two notable cases that were shared, bringing more features of the experience to light for UFO investigators (but since not widely published, not impacting public awareness).
On the night of August 12 1975 14-year-serving Air Force Sgt Charles L. Moody went home after his shift ended at 11:30 pm. He was based then at Holloman Air Force Base near Alamogordo, New Mexico. At home, he prepared to go out for a drive into the desert to see a meteor shower that he had read about in the local paper.
The news item about the meteor shower noted that 1 am was the best time to view it so he headed out to a remote spot away from city lights around that time. Soon after arriving, he saw a slightly illuminated disc-shaped object (50 feet long, 20 feet wide) descending a hundred yards away. At first he didn't think he was seeing a UFO, something he didn't believe in and in fact ridiculed others claiming to see him.
The craft when descending to 20 feet started gliding towards Moody, sitting on the front fender of his car. He stopped and hovered just 70 feet from him. Now he could see clearly that he wasn't seeing something ordinary and familiar, and be became very uncomfortable. Running into his car, he tried to start his car, but without success.
The craft was close enough for him to see shadowy figures in it through an oblong window. He then remembers next hearing a high pitched sound and feeling numb as he watches the craft rise and quickly disappearing in seconds. At this point, the car started and raced back home.
He sees that the clock in the kitchen reveals that it's 3 am, which doesn't make sense because it was just after 1:15 am when he saw the craft. He told his wife about seeing the craft without mentioning the missing time.
Moody experiences lower back pain and a rash on his lower body in the aftermath. He also continues to be bothered by his sighting so, like Pat Roach, writes to the editor of a UFO magazine on the newstand. The editor passes the letter on in this case also to Jim and Coral Lorenzen of APRO.
Jim Lorenzen initially interviewed Moody on the phone and on September 1st he visited in person, also interviewing Moody's wife (a nurse who noted her husband came back home pale and feeling sick that night). They went to the site of the sighting also.
A friend suggested to Moody the practice of meditation to help restore memory of what happened during his hour and a half of missing time. This seems to help and on October 6 Moody calls Lorenzen and related that memories were starting to surface. In November Moody is transferred overseas and when he significantly remembers more Lorenzen flies over there to interview him.
After Moody tried to start his car that night, and failed, a light surrounded him and he saw two beings gliding towards him. They were just under five feet, with large and hairless heads, larger eyes, very small noses and ears with thin lips. They were in skin tight black suits without zippers or buttons.
He assaulted both, hitting one by opening the car door and the other with his fist square in the face. He was immediately paralyzed and unconscious till waking up soon after on a surface inside the craft. At that time, a slightly even shorter being in a silver suit, seemingly the leader, told him (telepathically, no lips moving) that if he refrained from violence that he would have mobility restored. The being did that, using a rod-like device moved over his back and legs.
The being took him on a tour and discussed various things, including specific time periods related for the conditions of them emerging into human awareness (which didn't pan out, a typical outcome for many related predictions in other reported encounters).
UFO historian Jerome Clark noted this about the case (vol 1, UFO Encyclopedia, 3rd edition, pg 771):
"Many elements of [this case] would become familiar features of the abduction Phenomenon, just then coming into prominence. These include not only such obvious features as impaired memory, grayish-white humanoids, and vehicle interference, but more subtle ones such as lighting without a visible source, a black box, burned-sugar air, hemispheric crystalline structures associated with propulsion system, and false claims of open contact."
Also in 1975 was a case involving three people reportedly experiencing an encounter and abduction while traveling in a car from Fargo, North Dakota to Bismark, North Dakota. Their experience happened beginning at 3:15 am on August 26 1975 and would be investigated personally by Jerome Clark with University of Wyoming psychologist R. Leo Sprinkle doing hypnotic sessions on the older witness, Sandy Larson.
The witnesses to the sighting of crafts (with one large one standing out) only remembered sighting objects but couldn't explain an hour of missing time. Larson had no interest in and little awareness of UFO lore but on October 20 1975 she saw the NBC tv movie on the Hill case. This moved her to talk about her missing time experience with a musician friend, who as it turns out knew Jerome Clark (who is also a songwriter!) This brought Clark into the case.
The year 1975 was also when a man first stepped on a path where over the next several years he became what author C.D.B Bryan would report 2 decades later was the "dean" of UFO abduction investigators (pg 15, "Close Encounters of the Fourth Kind", Knopf, 1995).
A well known and highly regarded NY artist named Budd Hopkins would hear a story from an aging friend who owned a liquor store across the street from his Manhattan residence, starting for Hopkins a parallel "vocation".
Budd Hopkins (1931-2011) was "a painter and sculptor whose works are in the permanent collections of Whitney, Guggenheim, and Hirshhorn Museums as well as the Museum of Modern Art, the Carnegie-Mellon, the Brooklyn Museum..." (Volume 1, UFO Encyclopedia, 3rd edition, pg 613). His ties to the UFO subject began in 1964 when with two others he had a daylight sighting of a disc shaped object for a few minutes. He joined the UFO organization NICAP after that.
Hopkins knew the co owner of the liquor store across the street from him for 15 years. One night as he was buying wine he noticed that 72 year old George O'Barski was upset, first complaining of knee pain and then muttering about how just about anything can happen, one could be driving home and see something that scared one alot. Hopkins asked what was wrong and O'Barski hesitantly began sharing a story that Hopkins would have him repeat the next day on tape.
A little after 1 am on January 12 1975 O'Barski locked up the liquor store and headed home towards North Bergen, New Jersey, on the other side of the Hudson River. He did so, as was his habit, going through North Hudson Park.
He had his window down as he entered the park. At that point his radio was suddenly full of static noise and he heard a droning sound from outside. He then noticed what looked like a brightly lit up "great big pancake that had puffed up". It began hovering ten feet over a playing field.
He saw a ladder extend and about ten small beings (3 1/2 to 4 feet tall dressed in one piece suits with either hoods or a helmet) come down it. For the next few minutes the beings collected soil samples. (The next morning he checked and saw the holes.) The beings worked quickly and returned to the craft which then departed swiftly.
Hopkins brought in MUFON investigator Ted Bloecher and an extensive investigation began which included hearing from corroborating witnesses from the nearby Stonehenge Apartments.
After Hopkins wrote the case up for the Village Voice ("Sane Citizen Sees UFO in New Jersey", March 1, 1976), he began hearing from others with experiences. The experiences that involved "missing time" in particular would open the door to what seemed to be a very well hidden but widescale alien project. Hopkins established a network of therapists and hypnotists and by 1995 had addressed 1500 cases.
This will be expanded upon in subsequent papers.......