If you’ve been following my weekly blogs, you may recall that I’ve written several on close encounters of the iconic kind, about my meetings with famous people, and one on close encounters of the eerie kind, on my experiences with ghosts. To round this series out, I’ll now share my one and only blog on close encounters with UFOs. Read on...
The first one I remember occurred in the summer of 1961 in Wilmette, Illinois, a northern Chicago suburb not far from O’Hare Airport. My Indian friend, Kasi, and I were visiting an elderly couple, mutual friends, in the western part of town. We were taking turns on their tractor lawn mower. During a rest, I happened to look up into the western afternoon sky. What I saw was a silver disk of indeterminate size or distance which seemingly just hung there. I pointed it out to Kasi, at the time a Ph.D. student in accounting at Northwestern University. Then, a remarkable thing happened. After a quick look, he pushed my arm down and told me in no uncertain terms not to look. The phenomenon then seemingly disappeared. I remember not having slept well that night. A summer or two later, on a bus going to the Hudson River town of Nyack, NY, from New York City, I caught a glimpse, again in the western sky, for about five seconds of what the late famed UFO researcher and long-time head of the Astronomy Department at Northwestern University, Dr. J. Allen Hynek, referred to as a “daylight disk.” Many years later, on a flight from the Twin Cities to Miami, I had a similar daytime sighting off the starboard wing of our plane. This disk, which was dark, quickly accelerated away.
The last two sightings, which happened a day apart in Honolulu, both occurred at night in fall, 1971. The first, which could have been a falling meteorite, was a bright blue-white light which fell into the ocean off Waikiki. The other, though, proved the most dramatic of all. I was beginning the short walk from our detached carport to the house when I looked up. Something up there was meandering from the ocean toward the mountains behind me. It was going to the right, then the left, then back again. So, at first I thought it was a bird. I dismissed the idea that it was a small plane, since it made no sound and had no lights. But no wings were flapping. It was in the shape of a dark croissant, white near both edges. Now sure it was a UFO, I tried to communicate with it. “If you can ‘hear’ me,” I thought, “stop momentarily where you are.” It did, then flew on as before. My next question was, “Do you believe in God?” This time I gave it no way to answer. It disappeared momentarily to the right, then reappeared. Moments later, it disappeared over the Ko`olau Mountains. During the encounter I felt that my feelings had been controlled and kept calm. After, I felt fear bordering on panic. The next morning one of my university students reported that his favorite local disk jockey the night before had been flooded with calls from my area from listeners who had seen a UFO overhead. To quote Agent Mulder of the X Files, “The truth is out there!” I’m just report what I saw.