Another U.S. Air Force Loss to a UFO?


Those who are interested in the study of UFOs are well aware of the cases where U.S. Air Force pilots and their planes were lost chasing unidentified craft. The Thomas Mantell case of January, 1948 and the Kinross disappearance of November, 1953 are the only two known situations. If a recent article is to be believed, a third incident may have occurred in Japan in the Spring of 1959.

Writing in the Spring, 1993 issue of the now defunct magazine "FAR OUT" (Vol. 1, Number 3, pp.20-22), an ex-serviceman named "C. L. Hawke" claimed to be on duty when an Air Force interceptor merged on a radar screen with a UFO, and disappeared, never to be found. "Hawke" detailed his early interest in an Air Force career as a high school student in 1954, eventually went to college and then began his Air Force career as a meteorologist in 1957. He was assigned in October of that year to the Fifth Air Force Headquarters at Fuchu, Japan. Here he reportedly learned that 4 specially instrumented F-106 "Delta Dart" interceptors were based in the Western Pacific region, with 2 at Masawa and 2 at Okinawa. He indicated that the F-106 "was a new type of aircraft that was not yet officially in the Air Force". (NOTE: Current historical data on this aircraft indicates the first F-106 flew on December 26, 1956 and that deliveries to the USAF began in July, 1959. This could possibly allow for a number of early production aircraft to enter into USAF service at the time of the incident. The F-106 was an improved variant of the original delta-winged F-102 "Delta Dagger".)

In the Spring of 1959, "Hawke" wrote that he was at the Combat Operations Center at Fuchu, monitoring weather conditions, when one of the other men at the Center exclaimed, "They're back again!". Upon asking what was going on, he was told that unidentified flying objects were again being tracked on radar in an area south of Masawa, between Honshu and Hokkaido. These craft, according to the servicemen at the Center, were found to travel at 2,000 miles per hour, and then suddenly stop and hover, sometimes for as long as 2 to 3 hours. The UFOs would then head off between the two islands and disappear off the radar screen over the Sea of Japan.

A request came back on the base radio, "Shall we scramble?". When "Hawke" asked what that was all about, he was told that two specially-equipped F-106 interceptors were to be sent up to engage the UFO. However, only one plane went up, as the second craft's instrumentation was not working properly. "Hawke" was asked for a weather forecast and indicated "some low clouds and then a middle layer of clouds, oh maybe 15 or 16 thousand feet", but then "clear on top with some cirrus-stratus above that and a big full moon". Perfect for tracking the plane and the UFO, according to his colleagues.

The lone F-106 went up, and soon had the UFO in sight. The pilot was put on the Center's intercom through a down-link, allowing those in the room to hear the pilot's side of the conversation with Masawa. The pilot described "a circular object hovering...metallic and has a cockpit on top". The pilot then asked if he should make a firing pass, with the reply from the commander being, "We better get authority for that". Apparently, a communications link was established with the Pentagon and within five minutes came the answer, "Yes, make the firing pass".

The pilot then rolled in and fired off his rockets at the UFO. In what "Hawke" described as "the highest falsetto I've ever heard", the pilot exclaimed that he had fired the rockets and that "they detonated but did not hit it (the UFO)". It was "like an invisible shield...it didn't look like any shrapnel had penetrated". The pilot was then heard to virtually scream, "Oh my God, they've turned on some sort of beam and they're turning. They're coming after me". The pilot then went into "a vertical diving maneuver", while the radar operators "started screaming out that it's moving and vectoring toward (the pilot)", and they started "counting out the ranges as it (the UFO) was coming down". The pilot then said, "It's moving closer", and continued to describe how the craft was closing in on him and how he could see "this beam passing him by".

Suddenly, the two blips on the radar screen merged as the radar operator said "Contact". One blip remained on the screen for a while, with nothing else showing. "Hawke" stated that he then gave weather forecasts for 4 straight days while the Air Force searched for the F-106 and pilot. Nothing was ever found.

True story? Misinformation? Disinformation? Perhaps someone else out there has additional information to provide on this incident. Although there are similarities to the Kinross case (Pilot Felix Moncla, Jr. and radar operator R.R. Wilson disappeared in their F-89 Scorpion interceptor over Lake Superior when radar saw their plane merge with a UFO and vanish), the fact that the then state-of-the-art F-106 was entering into service at that time and was probably considered an equal and powerful force against any "unknown" seems to indicate possible validity. Yet, this story has never appeared anywhere else. Only time, and additional witness testimony, will shed any light on this case.

This summary by James J. Bjaloncik jjbjal@gwis.com


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