Gary was a Kansas City Police officer in 1960. He and his partner Richard were working the “dog watch” from midnight to 8 a.m. one Saturday when they saw something strange in the sky.
“About 2 a.m., we drove to St. John and Hardesty and were sitting at the northeast corner of Budd Park,” he said. While they were filling out reports, a bright light appeared and hovered above their car.
“There was no engine noise at all,” he said. “Just as suddenly as it appeared, it shot away into the western sky from a dead stop to gone in the count of three.
“Dick and I just sat there and stared at each other and then I said, ‘should we put this in our log report?’ His response was, ‘well, I guess that depends on how much you like psychiatrists.’”
They had seen a UFO. And, no, they didn’t report it.
Twenty-one Missouri UFO cases were reported this year to the Mutual UFO Network, an international investigation group. The cases range from witnesses reporting glowing spheres to seeing unidentified craft. On rare occasions, a case will include contact, or telepathic communication.
“I was about four and a half years old. I was sitting on the front steps to my house,” Fred of Kansas City wrote in his MUFON report. “I saw, suddenly from the east, a UFO come into view. … I kept mentally asking for a ride. I suddenly got a reply, ‘no. Not now. Not yet.’ Being a kid I got angry and shot three rolls of single-shot caps at it. A few minutes later, it flew back east.”
This was in 1950.
Most reports don’t include contact. Jim Johnson, director of the Kansas City chapter of MUFON, said the group’s objective is to apply scientific methods to the investigation of UFOs. But simply seeing a strange light or reporting mental contact isn’t enough to attract MUFON’s attention. The group needs physical proof, or at least corroboration in order to make the investigation worthwhile.
“It’s hardly credible if only one person saw it,” he said.
But, one-person reports make up the majority of UFO sightings, so the Kansas City area only has “one or two” UFO cases a year MUFON considers worthy of an investigation.
Gary’s second encounter in 1979 might fit into that category.
Gary and another officer, Paul, decided at 11 p.m. to drive to Bennett Spring for trout fishing. Gary stopped at his house to pick up his son, fishing equipment, and coffee.
They stopped in Cole Camp to use the outdoor restroom at a closed gas station.
“When we walked outside we were enveloped in light,” he said. “We looked up and just like the first time, hovering right above us was a UFO.”
The three of them rushed into the car and the UFO “left in a blink.” They continued to Bennett Spring, but didn’t sleep much that night.
“I occasionally see a show on the History Channel about UFO sightings and find myself thinking how incredible some of those stories are,” Gary said. “If I find them hard to believe, how can I expect those who have not seen to believe?”
Copyright 2006 by Jason Offutt
Got a scary story? Ever played with a Ouija board, heard voices, seen a ghost, UFO or a creature you couldn’t identify? Let Jason know about it: Jason Offutt c/o The Examiner, 410 S. Liberty, Independence, Mo. 64050, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Include your name, address and telephone number. Your story might make an upcoming installment of “From the Shadows.”
Jason Offutt is a syndicated columnist, author and fan of all things Fortean. His book of ghost stories, “Haunted Missouri,” will soon be available at www.jasonoffutt.com and all major bookstores.