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Volume 5
Number 44
November 2, 2000

Editor: Joseph Trainor

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On Thursday, October 19, 2000, at 7 p.m., teacher Joan Rojas Moffett was chatting with some colleagues in a second-floor classroom at the Escola San Francisco (school) in Chiu-Chiu, village in northern Chile about 40 kilometers (25 miles) from Calama, when he saw a bright light in the dark sky.

"It appeared in the northeast, split in two and then lost itself in the south," Rojas said, "I thought, What the hell!? but didn't comment on it to anyone until later in the evening when everyone saw the object and heard the noise."

That was the beginning.

Three hours later, at 10 p.m., 35 adults, members of the local branch of the General Center of Parents and Attorneys (a kind of Chilean PTA--J.T.), were holding a meeting at the school. Twenty children were playing in the schoolyard, waiting for the meeting to end. They heard a weird sound, and then the UFO appeared.

"Students Rene Calpa Carranza and Walter Anza Vilca stated that the object, which was predominantly white in color with blue, red and yellow flashing lights" hovered above the schoolyard. "A number of the children also recalled 'a burning odor.'"

As the UFO hovered overhead, a panel slid open on the underside of the craft, and a dazzling light beam stabbed downward, bathing two people in its unearthly glow-.

Struck by the beam were Sra. Fresia Vega, the school custodian, and student Valentina Rojas Espinoza, age 8. The pair instantly vanished.

"According to Monica Espinoza Fernandez (the girl's mother--J.T.), 'the children were outdoors and were the witnesses, although not in the same way as Fresia and Valentina, and they (the other children) called for the meeting to end and the parents to come outside and see for themselves what was taking place. However, at this precise moment, we heard an enormous blast, much louder than the shattering of glass. It was not an earthquake or explosives or anything like that. The meeting went was ended, and everyone went outside for a look.'"

The stunned adults saw "a spaceship that was hovering no higher than 'a four-story building' (40 feet or 6 meters above the schoolyard--J.T.)" The eye-dazzling beam then switched off, and the UFO zoomed away "to the south and disappeared as it reached the Chiu-Chiu cemetery."

Fresia Vega and Valentina Espinoza were found, dazed and shivering, a short distance away.

In an interview with the newspaper El Mercurio de Calama, Fresia Vega said, "It was a very large ship, about the size of a soccer field, surrounded by lights of every imaginable color. In the middle of it there was a door from which there came a light that blinded me and left me paralyzed. I felt myself being sucked in through the door, and I felt a tingling sensation all over my body. Voices became far, far away, and I froze. That's when I realized I must have passed out because I remember nothing at all. I then felt the door was being shut with a sound like that or iron, and the shop looked like it was surrounded by light. Twenty-four hours have gone by, and I still haven't recovered from it."

"Much like the custodian," Valentina Rojas Expinoza said, "I felt cold, and my blood froze. I was very scared, and I hid behind Fresia, but then I looked up and everything was clear, as when day breaks. I would speak to Sra. Fresia but she didn't answer me. She couldn't speak, and it was as if she had gone away. I was very scared."

There is an intriguing time discrepancy in the accounts of the eyewitnesses. Both Fresia and Valentina reported being "in the light for two or three minutes." But the children in the schoolyard said they were "gone for two or three seconds."

Monica Espinoza Fernandez, who was still inside the school, reported, "I felt nothing, but my daughter (Valentina) who was with the children and suddenly came in to tell me. I paid her no mind until I saw that Fresia was frightened."

UFO reports poured into the regional office of the Carabineros (Chile's national police--J.T.) from all over El Loa province, also known as the Second Region.

"Parmedic Enrique Alvarez said, 'My colleagues in Ayquina and Caspana also saw the object.'"

Earlier, at 7 p.m., "a veritable flood of sightings took place in the towns of El Loa province, particularly in Calama, Chuquicamata and the towns bordering Argentina," such as San Pablo de Atacama.

"In Calama and Chuquicamata, there was a single sighting at 10 p.m. of a spacecraft the size of a soccer field that filled the area with light and turned night into day."

"In Caspana, in the foothills of the Cordillera, a witness suffered a nervous breakdown after seeing the craft."

""Eyewitness accounts forced the Carabineros to open an investigation which is being conducted with great secrecy. But there are police officers who were in the middle of their rounds who had seen the lights." (See the Chilean newspapers El Mercurio of Valparaiso for October 22, 2000, "UFO causes commotion in the northern region;" El Mercurio de Calama for October 21, 2000, "School custodian beamed up by a huge spaceship;" and La Estrella del Loa for October 21, 2000, "Massive UFO sightings on the Loa River." Muchas gracias a Scott Corrales, autor de los libros Chupacabras and Other Mysteries y Forbidden Mexico, a y tambien a Dr. Virgilio Sanchez Ojedo y Lilliana Torres para esos articulos de diario.)

(Editor's Note: Calama is where three Chupacabras were reportedly captured by the Chilean army earlier this year. See UFO Roundup, volume 5, number 23, "Chileans say NASA took custody of captured Chupacabras," page 1.)


On Tuesday, October 24, 2000, teacher trainee Jenny Cook, 18, of Osbourne Road, Hartlepool, UK "looked out her car window and watched as an object made of metal fell from the sky."

"The Hartlepool teenager was an eyewitness to a drama yesterday (October 24) when a five-foot (1.6 meter) piece of silver metal was spotted plunging to earth."

"Jenny was waiting in her car for a friend yesterday morning when the mystery object fell to ground near houses in Sunderland."

"Sunderland University student Jenny said, 'I was just looking out my car window, not staring into space, and I saw what looked like a teardrop-shaped piece of silver metal falling from the sky.'"

"The 18-year-old teacher trainee added, 'It almost looked like a piece of blown glass, but it was about the size of a small car. I thought it might have been a small model plane, but it was larger than that.'"

"'It was coming down from the sky to the left of me really, really fast and was burning white-hot at the tip. I seemed to be watching it for four or five seconds before it disappeared behind the building. This was not an aeroplane or anything like that.'"

"Jenny added, "I think it might have been something that had fallen from an aeroplane or something like that, but I really don't know what it was.'"

"Inspector Pat MacDonald of the Hartlepool Police said they were investigating the report of an object falling from the sky in the Hendon area."

Inspector MacDonald said, "Officers were sent out to make enquiries and to make a search of the area, but nothing was found. The investigation is continuing." (See the Hartlepool Mail for October 25, 2000, "Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's a UFO!" Many thanks to Gerry Lovell for this newspaper article.)


"Locals report mysterious sightings, streaks of bright lights and plumes of smoke zooming through the sky."

"A central Kansas farmer finds flattened and charred chunks of debris."

"This isn't science fiction."

"Paul Wereb, an adjunct faculty member at Butler and Cowley Community College says Rush County farmer Craig Nixon found fragments of a Russian rocket."

On Friday, October 13, 2000, a spectacular fireball was seen by thousands of people in Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska. There were initially reports of "a UFO crash" in Hammond, Oklahoma. But last week NASA said the fireball was caused by a Russian Proton rocket burning up on re-entry.

"Wereb, who is also a space science educator, at the Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center in Hutchinson," a city on Highway 50 about 60 miles (100 kilometers) northwest of Wichita, "was called on to identify the space junk."

"Nixon said he saw the pieces in the sky but didn't have any idea where they fell until days later."

"'I was out fixing fence and stumbled across it,' he said, 'It was in a place you couldn't drive with the pickup.'"

"Nixon said the charred fragments caught his attention because they looked so unusual."

"'It didn't look like it should be there,' he said, 'I thought it might have been part of what flew over. That was the first thing that crossed my mind.'"

"Nixon called Rush County Sheriff Jack Mendenhall, who had seen the sky light up (October 13) while at a high school football game in LaCrosse (population 1,450)."

"'Everybody in the stadium saw it,' Mendenhall said of the phenomenon that lit up the sky. 'Pieces of it flared off the sides like a Roman candle.'"

"Mendenhall thought it was an aircraft dropping flares, but as it passed overhead, he saw a big smoke trail."

"After Mendenhall got Nixon's call, he shipped the sample to Wereb, who had identified many meteorites, and to astronomy teacher Rob Kuhn, director of the McConnell Air Force Base branch of Butler and Cowley County Community College."

"Wereb said the largest piece measured a foot and a half(18 inches or 45 centimeters--J.T.) and eight inches (20 centimeters) wide. A second piece was 10 inches (25 centimeters) long and six inches (15 centimeters) wide. Numerous small fragments were scattered on the ground." (See the New York Daily News for October 25, 2000, "Farmer finds space junk." Many thanks to Steve Wilson Sr. and George A. Filer for this newspaper article.)


""It was probably inevitable that Republican vice presidential candidate Dick Cheney would have a close encounter of the strange kind during a campaign stop in Roswell," New Mexico.

The city of Roswell is "the legendary site where some say a spaceship crashed in (July) 1947. So when he arrived at the Chaves County courthouse for a rally Wednesday," October 25, 2000, "he was greeted by a sign that depicted a little green man with a heart and the name 'Cheney'--as in 'Space Aliens Love Cheney.'"

"UFO cultists revere Roswell as the place where they say a spaceship with a crew of five aliens crashed, killing all the extraterrestrials. The Army is said to have covered up the event for all these years. The TV series The X-Files often has dealt with 'the Roswell incident.'"

"(USA) Defense Department Area 51, a secret base, is near Roswell. Conspiracy theorists have long said that the military has projects there relating to human-alien relations."

"Cheney, as Defense Secretary from 1989 to 1993, was privy to Area 51's secrets, but he didn't reveal them to the (Republican) partisan crowd of 2,500." (See USA Today for October 26, 2000, "Cheney woods 'alienated' voters in Roswell," page 4A.)

(Editor's Comment: I find it very interesting that Cheney flew into Roswell just a day after the mysterious mass death of 24 cattle in that community. Was he on some kind of clandestine mission for the Pentagon? Fore more on the mysterious cattle deaths, see UFO Roundup, volume 5, number 43 for October 26, 2000, Mysterious mass death of cattle in New Mexico," page 3.),


On Friday, October 6, 2000, the male witness and his family arrived at a cabin near Sedona, Arizona for a week's vacation. He re[ported, "As soon as I arrived, at about 7:15 p.m., I was at my (car) trunk, removing luggage, and looked to my right (west) and saw something very bright in the sky, which got real large and small again and repeated."

"My brother, Mom, and her two friends also saw this. It looked like it could be a plane but was two or three times brighter and was low on the horizon."

Until the family left on Friday, October 13, 2000, "each night we looked for it, and while we were looking at it, it was as if someone had flipped the switch to off, but it would reappear in another location."

"Through binoculars it appeared to be red on the underside but didn't look like a craft."

"When I got back, I was listening to the Whitley Streiber show and some guy called and described the same incident in Phoenix. He said the same thing--that he couldn't tell if it was a craft. Did you hear anything about this?" (Many thanks to George A. Filer of MUFON for this report.)


On Friday night, October 27, 2000, Awais M. reports, "My girlfriend was driving to San Antonio to pick me up when this unidentified object flew towards her car. At first the thing might have looked like a plane, but after closer inspection, it seemed otherwise, and she could not decipher (identify--J.T.) the object."

"The unidentified object hovered and it came very near her car. It seemed like it was targeting her for several seconds. She wanted a closer look at it, but driving made things difficult. She also saw a white light and red flashes along the side."

"While we were coming back to Corpus Christi, she saw it again and pointed the object out to me."

He described the UFO as "stagnant (stationary--J.T.) and hovering perfectly. The object seemed to follow us back to Corpus, and before heading to my house I saw it up high."

"The next day (October 28, 2000), I saw it again and wondered what the origin was. So I called the naval station (U.S. Navy base in Corpus Christi--J.T.) and not surprisingly, they had no idea what it was." (Email Form Report)


On Saturday, October 7, 2000, during the early morning hours, the witness, a 16-year-old male student at Howell High School, climbed into his hunting blind in the woods off Layton Road between Howell and Fowlersville, Michigan. He had his bowhunting permit, his compound bow and waited for the first whitetail deer of the season to come into range.

But while sitting quietly in the blind, located on a platform about "15 to 20 feet above ground," the young man "fell asleep in his blind. Then something occurred just after 4 a.m. When he awoke, it was still dark. The weather was cold and overcast."

"Suddenly, he became aware that a bright red light of some size approached his position from the northwest, heading in a southeasterly direction at a very high speed. He estimated that the object was 75 yards (225 feet or 70 meters--J.T.) away from his location and was moving just above treetop level (60 feet or 18 meters) and traveling at incredible speed. He said the object covered his entire field of view in less than one second."

"In estimating the size, he said the object appeared to be the size of a half-dollar (USA 50-cent coin--J.T.) at arm's length. The object itself had a bright red light in the center, and the light seemed to diffuse to the edges of the object, as though it was a translucent sphere of some kind." (Many thanks to Doug Parrish for this report.)


"Four new moons have been discovered in orbit around Saturn, giving the giant planet a total of 22 moons, a group of astronomers announced Thursday," October 26, 2000.

"A telescope device which amplifies light helped the astronomers spot faint pinpoints of light in orbit off Saturn," a gas giant with bright orbiting rings located two billion miles (3.2 billion kilometers) from Earth, "that is the second largest planet in our solar system."

"If the discovery is confirmed by others, it will mean that Saturn has one more moon than the 21 known to orbit Uranus, the third largest planet in the solar system."

(Editor's Note: Sunlight reaching Uranus is so dim that standing on the planet's equator at high noon on Midsummer Day, you would get as much light as standing in a pitch-dark room with only a lit match for illumination.)

"The astronomers estimate that the new moons, based on the amount of light they reflect (also known as albedo--J.T.), are six to 30 miles (9 to 48 kilometers) in diameter. They are seen only as faint dots of light moving around the planet."

"The discovery team included Joseph Burns and Philip Nicoison of Cornell University; Brett Gladman of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique in France; Jean- Marie Petit and Hans Scholl of the Observatoire de la Cote d'Azur in France; J.J. Kavelaars of McMaster University in Canada and Brian Marsden of the Harvard- Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA." (Many thanks to Steve Wilson Sr. for this news release.)


In the southeastern corner of Bolivia, a land- locked nation in the middle of South America, lie vast tracts of jungle called La Selva. For years, archaeologists have ignored the region, preferring to concentrate their efforts in the Andes. However, recent developments have persuaded them to take a second look, particularly at the region known as the llanos de Mojo (Plains of Mojo).

Instead of "just oppressive jungle, biting bugs and primitive tribes," scientists now believe that "much of scientific significance" lies "hidden under the lush greenery."

"We are now learning that some of these Amazon (Basin) peoples were extraordinary earthmovers. Having little stone to work with, they matched the achievements of the Incas in the (Andes) mountains just to the west with many miles of earthen causeways. Canals just as long were dedicated to fish-farming. Huge mounds rising above the floodplains supported villages."

"Even the mounds hold mysteries. One of them, named Ibibate, has been described by anthropologist W. Baiee as being, 'as close to a Mayan pyramid as you'll see in South America...Beneath the forest cover is a 60-foot (18-meter) human-made artefact.'"

"Ibibate is only one of many such mounds in the Bolivian Amazon. Called 'lomas,' they are obviously quite distinct from any Mayan pyramid we know of. Rather, the lomas are enormous islands of pottery shards mixed with black soil. Hundreds of these mounds prove that a large population once occupied this region of Bolivia called the Llanos de Mojos."

"Anthropologist C.L. Erickspon and a team from the University of Pennsylvania have discovered that the Llanos de Mojos once supported a Precolumbian complex of societies linked together by networks of communication, trade and alliances."

"Erickson asserts that these cultures erected 'thousands of linear kilometers of artificial earthen causeways and canals...large urban settlements and intensive farming systems.'"

"Indeed, aerial photographs of this immense region show patterns of canals and causeways that stretch from horizon to horizon. This is truly a remarkable, if virtually unexplored region of ancient human endeavour." (See Science Frontiers #132 for November-December 2000, "Earthmovers of the Amazon," page 1. Many thanks to William R. Corliss for this news story.)

from the UFO Files...


One of the strangest UFO incidents of the Nineteenth Century--a true Close Encounter of the Second Kind--took place on the shores of Lake Maracaibo in Venezuela back in October of 1886.

Here is the text of the actual report Warner Cowgill, USA Consul in Maracaibo, to the magazine Scientific American.

"During the night of the 24th of October last (1886), which was rainy and tempestuous, a family of nine persons, sleeping in a hut a few leagues from Maracaibo, were awakened by a loud humming noise and a vivid, dazzling light which brilliantly illuminated the interior of the house."

"The occupants, completely terror-stricken, and believing, as they relate, that the end of the world had come, threw themselves on their knees and commenced to pray, but their devotions were almost immediately interrupted by violent vomitings, and extensive swellings commenced to appear in the upper part of their bodies, this being particularly noticeable about the face and lips."

"It is to be noted that the brilliant light was not accompanied by a sensation of heat, although there was a smoky appearance and a peculiar smell."

"The next morning (October 25, 1886) the swellings had subsided, leaving upon the face and body large black blotches. No special pain was felt until the ninth day (November 1, 1886_ when the skin peeled off and these blotches were transformed into virulent raw sores."

"The hair of the head fell off upon the side which happened to be underneath when the phenomenon occurred, the same side of the body being, in all nine cases, the more seriously injured."

"The remarkable part of the occurrence is that the house was uninjured, all the doors and windows being closed at the time."

"No trace of lightning could afterward be observed in any part of the building, and all the sufferers unite in saying that there was no detonation, but only the loud humming already mentioned."

"Another curious attendant circumstance is that the trees around the house showed no signs of injury until the ninth day, when they suddenly withered, almost simultaneously with the development of the sores upon the bodies of the occupants of the house."

"This is perhaps a mere coincidence, but it is remarkable that the same susceptibility to electrical effects, with the same lapse of time, should be observed in both animal and vegetable organisms."

"I have visited the sufferers, who are now in one of the hospitals of this city and although their appearance is truly horrible, yet it is hoped that in no case will the injuries prove fatal."

(See Scientific American volume 55, page 389 for 1886, "Curious Phenomenon in Venezuela" by Warner Cowgill. Reprinted in Strange Phenomena, Volume I by William R. Corliss, The Sourcebook Project, Glen Arm, Maryland, 1974.)

(Editor's Comment: We know a lot more about radiation today than we did in 1886. It almost sounds like a miniature neutron bomb, doesn't it?)

Readers in the USA, don't forget to vote in the election next Tuesday. At stake is the big prize-- the Oval Office itself. It's the Republicans versus the Democrats...Texas governor George W. Bush versus USA Vice President Al Gore...or, as some put, "The Texecutioner" versus "The Great Prevaricator."

Join us again next week for more UFO and paranormal news from around the planet Earth, brought to you by "the paper that goes home--UFO Roundup." See you then.

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