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Bypassing Travis Walton's abduction saga to assess the reality of that 'Fire In The Sky'

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posted on Jan, 12 2019 @ 07:47 PM

NO, don't leave the thread yet!

Yes, it's an unfortunate picture (as well as unfortunate head hair) and, in terms of flak avoidance, an equally unfortunate choice to accept the Enquirer's reward, but why on earth would seven six young men refuse to stare a gift horse in the mouth? (Tellingly, Steve Pierce is missing from the pic, but we'll come to that later.) In any case, the pic has nothing to do with the UFO's veracity. In fact, all we tend to hear about the 1975 Travis Walton case is... Travis Walton's abduction. But one could argue that he is only a small part of the story, or literally a seventh of it, considering the six crew members who accompanied him are usually cast to the sidelines, especially if someone is determined to ferociously debunk the experience. Or rather Travis's experience. What if the abduction angle was a useful fabrication while the UFO sighting itself was a genuinely anomalous event that was understandably overshadowed?

By focusing on Walton, are debunkers recklessly cutting off their noses to spite their faces in the face of a potentially remarkable close-up UFO sighting by six other witnesses on November 5th 1975, all from Snowflake, Arizona? They deserve a hearing, especially when sources such as Wikipedia nonchalantly fail to even name or indulge Walton's crew members at all. Here's a very quick recap of the basics:

At 6pm, their employer Mike Rogers began driving the crew back to Snowflake when they all saw a bright light behind a hill; upon closer inspection it was a bright, shiny, silvery disc above a clearing, measuring only 8 feet high by 20 feet in diameter. Against advice, Walton ran towards it, causing the object to “wobble” and emit loud turbine-like sounds. As Walton edged back, the crew saw a beam of blue-green light “strike” him, lift him a foot into the air with limbs outstretched, before shooting him back 10 feet to land on his right shoulder, leaving him limp. Believing him dead, the terrified Rogers and Co frantically drove away before returning a while later to find Travis missing. Five days later, Walton re-materialised, and the attendant abduction story began in earnest, but let's bypass that aspect to concentrate on the other six loggers.

Ken Peterson rang Deputy Sheriff Chuck Ellison to report Travis was missing, avoiding UFO details until the six (all distressed, two in tears) met an initially sceptical Ellison in Heber who soon opined:

"If they were acting, they were awfully good at it." 

Sheriff Marlin Gillespie and Officer Ken Coplan interviewed them, Rogers insisting they go to the scene immediately, Peterson and Allen Dalis tagging along whilst the other three were too upset to join them. No physical evidence was found, and when Walton's mother was notified, her calm reaction raised suspicions although she did react very emotionally a short time later (delayed shock?). Three days later, Rogers was furious that police gave up searching the area, prompting a full-scale air and land search.

Walton's brother Duane told UFO researcher Fred Sylvanus he'd seen a similar UFO in 1963 and that both brothers had vowed to get close to one in future, despite Travis later claiming to have no “keen” interest in UFOs. Rogers also told Sylvanus he hoped the disappearance would excuse breaching the logging contract – all of which prompted marshal Sanford Flake to declare the case was faked by the Walton brothers using a “lit balloon”.

On 10th November at the Arizona Department of Public Safety, all of the crew except Dalis (who did not complete it) passed a polygraph test run by Cy Gilson, insisting they did not know Walton's whereabouts, and adamant they saw the UFO. Gilson concluded:

These polygraph examinations prove that these five men did see some object they believed to be a UFO, and that Travis Walton was not injured or murdered by any of these men on that Wednesday".

Sheriff Gillespie then stated he had no doubt they were telling the truth – a vital point irrespective of the later controversy surrounding Travis's own abduction details and debunker Philip J. Klass screaming that Rogers would use an Act Of God clause to cover the contract breach – which Rogers never did. Following the attention aroused by the movie 'Fire In The Sky' (1993), Rogers and Dalis (plus Travis) repeated a polygraph test, again conducted by Cy Gilson, the results being exactly the same as before. So, as it stands, it seems difficult to refute that Walton's six colleagues witnessed a UFO, but how has the passage of time treated some of them since?

Debunker supremo Philip Klass was alleged to have historically offered Steve Pierce (above) $10,000 to declare the case a hoax. In July 2012, researcher Kevin Randle interviewed Pierce, who said the seven crew members initially suspected the very bright, “solid” white light seen in 1975 was set up by local hunters. Dalis was the first to declare it a spaceship, and after Walton was 'struck', Dwayne Smith believed he'd been incinerated. After reporting the incident, Pierce went home, too traumatised (as were John Goulette and Smith) to return to the UFO site with police.

Pierce recalled the police speaking with his mother the next morning, and sneaked away to his girlfriend's after hearing the six loggers were potential suspects in a crime. Eventually he was the first of the six to take the polygraph test, which focused primarily on whether a crime had occurred. After Walton returned, Pierce kept away from the media circus and Enquirer photographers. It was then that deputy Jim Click allegedly visited him to pass on the offer from Klass: ten big ones to call it a hoax, later followed by multiple monthly phone calls from Klass despite Pierce moving to Texas and using first name “Jeffrey” (Klass noted the alternative name in his polygraph papers).

Pierce was tempted, but his wife objected after asking him directly if the case was a hoax - he'd said “No”. Eventually, after the constant calls, and in financial woe, he finally told Klass, “Yes, it's a hoax”, and asked for the money. They arranged a friendly meeting in Texas where Klass said he needed evidence (“stuff”) to prove a hoax (eg, a generator that created the bright light - which hints that at least Klass believed the men saw an object). However, Pierce was lying through his teeth and desperate for the money (and had endured an unrelated falling out with Walton and Rogers). Not being able to provide the evidence, the offer fell through.

But what was Klass's side of the story...?


edit on 12-1-2019 by ConfusedBrit because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 12 2019 @ 07:50 PM
[PART 2]

Klass kept a transcript of a phone call with Pierce from 6/11/78 (confirming this was the first time they'd spoken together) wherein the relationship between Click and Pierce was discussed. Klass referred him to Bill Barry's book 'Ultimate Encounter' (1978) in which marshall Sank Flake alleged Click possessed a signed denial of the UFO story from Pierce. Mike Rogers was also quoted as saying:

“Steve told me and Travis that he had been offered $10,000 just to sign a denial. He said he was thinking about taking it. We asked him, 'Even though you know it happened, would you deny it just for the money?' He said maybe he would. He was thinking about it. So I told him, 'Then you'll spend the money alone and you'll be bruised'.”

Barry's book described Pierce as “out of work, penniless”, but that he didn't take the money and signed no denial, fleeing in misery and panic, “a man-child dispossessed by his personal devils”. Pierce was unimpressed, insisting that Click had boasted of finding “someone” if Pierce could prove the case a hoax. He added that Travis was “the most ignorant, stupid person I've ever met in my life”, incapable of writing a book by himself.

Klass clarified to Pierce that the reward money was a (well-known) general offer to anybody who could prove there are ET spacecraft, and not specific to the Walton case. In fact, both men agreed that the abduction story was a hoax, Pierce admitting:

If I could ever prove it was a hoax, I'd damn sure do it.”

Pierce was furious about Walton saying they'd worked hard all day on the day of the incident, insisting Travis “didn't do one thing all day... He stayed in the truck all day. He was sick”. He also said Rogers was absent from the crew all day - “He said he was down the mountain working” - and that the crew had never worked that late before, usually quitting at 4pm rather than 6pm. Regarding the truck's seating arrangements, he claims he could “see everything... and the rest of those guys didn't even see what happened” because he was blocking their view. He witnessed what he thought was something rigged up by a deer hunter...

I couldn't see a top or bottom or sides – all I could see was a front of it. You couldn't tell if it had a bottom to it or a back to it or anything. It was, ah, I can't explain what the color was.

Klass asked if he saw Walton “disappear”, finding it hard to imagine they would abandon him. Pierce said it was Rogers' own decision to scarper, rather nastily adding that he disliked the “smart-ass troublemaker” Travis so much he didn't care about his safety anyway.

So, I think we can see through Pierce's words to Randle in 2012 via his own words to Klass in 1978, and that the $10,000 was not case-specific. However, that he saw a UFO is not in question, even if the question of a 'fake' UFO remains, but why has nobody tried to recreate such a fake sighting since 1975? And is Pierce correct in saying nobody else in the truck (aside from driver Rogers, presumably) witnessed it? Ken Peterson would disagree...

Elna Baker interviewed Peterson (above) alongside Mike Rogers in 2010 for This American Life and described his personal situation:

Ken started telling us a little bit about himself. Prior to this trip, all I knew was that he was divorced, had kids, lived alone in a trailer, and that I had to call him at his sister's because he couldn't afford to use his cell phone minutes. He told us he spends two or three days a week in the library using the internet to research his UFO theories, which he has time for because he's pretty much retired now...

Ken Peterson: "I tell everybody - I have four sons - I tell people that they put me out to pasture. Just live by myself, and I'm just totally obsessed. Everybody else realized that I'm obsessed with the UFO encounter."

Ken wishes he had been taken instead of Travis, and remains convinced the UFO was real although it played havoc with his Mormon family - even his sons and daughter dismissed his story, leaving him feeling further isolated since "nobody will hear me out on it". His isolation also seems to have increased a curious obsession with signs and coincidences that began after that night in 1975:

I believe that it was intentional, that it was a display of the symbology of the phoenix, mythological phoenix...You know, death and rebirth. And, you know, we're fairly close to Phoenix. Three of the guys were on our crew had just come up from Phoenix. And, of course, afterwards with all the media coverage and all the Phoenix TV stations there.

The interviewer is taken aback by this - as was I - and it's easy to assume Ken has perhaps lost touch with reality over time, but the incident has clearly disrupted his entire life.

I think I've rambled on long enough, and despite not covering all of of the crew in detail, Peterson and Pierce do provide some fascinating, rather controversial angles, so let's leave the last words to Mike Rogers, who claims to be deeply sceptical in general:

I'm very skeptical of anything and everything else. I even have certain skepticisms about this. I would have even doubted my own self. If something like this would have happened to me by myself, or even with one other person and that person was gone or abducted or whatever, I would doubt my own side. I think over a few years I would have just decided it was some kind of a dream or some kind of an odd occurrence that has no answer, and I left it at that. But there were seven of us out here, so it made it pretty easy to rely on the other guys for complete and continuous memory.

Although Walton's abduction will forever remain a controversy, the UFO itself (whether faked or not), via the statements of the other loggers, seems to remain a constant reality throughout. Soil samples have been since analysed for the area, providing interesting results, but testimony from the mouths of loggers themselves is enough to convince me that SOMETHING strange appeared above those trees in November 1975.

But what say YOU, ATSer?


edit on 12-1-2019 by ConfusedBrit because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 12 2019 @ 08:30 PM
So what exactly are you bypassing again?

posted on Jan, 12 2019 @ 08:33 PM
My humble opinion the incident was very real but what was it.
Once again I have two suspect's.

One is non human entity's and the other is Human entity's.
The first may be aliens or extra dimensional in nature.
The second may be field world for an ultra top secret black budget project of some kind.

I do know as entertaining as it was the film Fire in the sky bore very little semblance to Mr Walton's own account of the incident and was so heavily dramatized that it may have painted the wrong impression of the abductors in this case needlessly painting them darker than they may have really been.

If alien's it sound's like they hurt Mr Walton probably unintentionally and perhaps the beam that struck him was too powerful or something and then they actually spent some time making him better before releasing him again bewildered and in shock rather than merely knocked him out to study him, it is even quite possible he was actually dead when he fell to the ground and they resuscitated him in which case while the encounter was dangerous unlike the movie this would portray being's with a high ethical base to there psychology since they then tried to rectify the accident and restore the victim to health and even though he was not in top shape when found - he was alive.

I also think looking at human psychology there are element's in society that NEED this to be a fake for various reason's such as belief, fear and also financial and reputation reason's as evidenced by the account you have recorded above, it is sad that debunkers will often stoop to lying and creating false evidence just to win an argument but of course it could also have been government wanting the case to go away I mean Swamp Gas and Mass Hallucination (there is no such thing as a mass hallucination the closest in reality is a mirage) were used to debunk some very credible sighting's which the government wanted to keep a lid on, in any other role the guy that came up with those explanation's would have been laughed out of the scientific establishment but because it was UFO's it was taken as gospel by them instead.

Great thread you have started S&F.

posted on Jan, 12 2019 @ 08:47 PM
Interesting take and observations, CB. Some food for thought there and nicely presented.

edit on 12-1-2019 by The GUT because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 12 2019 @ 09:02 PM
As someone who happens to live in AZ and was/is interested in UFOs for almost 50 years, all I can add is that the scuttlebutt is that Walton and co accurately reported their experiences and it HAPPENED.

Everything else is noise and opinion.

As Labtech mentions, it comes down to either: something "real" and alien, something not exactly "real" but somewhat physical and beyond common understanding or humans with tech that seems too high to exist with our common understanding.

Either way, Walton was telling truth as he knew it, along with the rest of the crew to different extents for different reasons.

The common portrayals have been "Hollywood-ized" and/or edited to nonsense, though the actual testimony seems like nonsense due to most of us lacking context.

I happen to guess it was humans with "too high" technology, myself, but it's a guess based on the most likely scenarios cobbled together. The more one knows about these events, the less one answer seems likely.

posted on Jan, 13 2019 @ 12:06 AM

originally posted by: LABTECH767

If alien's it sound's like they hurt Mr Walton probably unintentionally and perhaps the beam that struck him was too powerful or something and then they actually spent some time making him better before releasing him again bewildered and in shock rather than merely knocked him out to study him, it is even quite possible he was actually dead when he fell to the ground and they resuscitated him in which case while the encounter was dangerous unlike the movie this would portray being's with a high ethical base to there psychology since they then tried to rectify the accident and restore the victim to health and even though he was not in top shape when found - he was alive.

I never thought of this, but it makes sense. D.B. does sort of come back like Buffy in Season Six.

posted on Jan, 13 2019 @ 01:17 AM
funny synchronicity here as i was looking at this case 2 days ago

i got one question about this case

1.Travis never went under hypnosis for this case,or so i found,is this true and if not are there any transcripts of said hypnosis?

As for the case itself,i believe its the real deal,Travis got too emotional when he visited the abduction place,actually emotional is not the right word,he was scared #less if you guys will excuse my phrase.He was really really afraid.Which for me is truth enough.

Which leads to another interesting question.We got so many abduction cases whereas even our scientists dont bother wildlife so much,we "abduct" one two lions,or one two white sharks tag them and let them.But the abduction phenomenon is going on for so long,what are they looking for?

Ps can the owners of the site bring travis for an AmA?

posted on Jan, 13 2019 @ 01:44 AM
a reply to: ConfusedBrit

There are some audio recordings from the week of the incident that few people know about. You'll enjoy hearing them. The guys who were with Walton made several calls to NUFORC as well as dealing with the sheriffs. To modern senses this will seem absurd, but back then NUFORC was fielding 1000s of calls a year and had somewhat of a public presence.

One of the calls did more to make me doubt the whole thing than anything else I've read or heard. I won't say which one so you can judge for yourself and, to be fair, it might sound different to me all these years later. There's also the sterling fact that we shouldn't judge how people react to experience and everyone's different. Here we go:

Travis Walton Abduction in the Apache-Sitgreaves National
Forest, AZ. November 6, 1975.
51-58 are the earliest calls recorded dealing with the Walton Incident.

051:11.08.1975 Taylor AZ mp3 link
Notification of the abduction by a friend of Travis Walton's brother. 07:00

052: 11.08.1975 mp3 link
Jerry Phillips reports to Gribble about his conversation with
the Taylor, AZ Town Marshall regarding the abduction. 04:00

053: 11.09.1975 Snowflake, AZ mp3 link
Ralph Anderson, Travis Walton's brother at 11:21 AM 12:15

054: 11.09.1975 mp3 link
Jerry Phillips and Robert Gribble discuss the investigations
progress at 6:00 PM 09:06

055: 11.11.1975 mp3 link
Jerry Phillips and Robert Gribble discuss investigation progress
at 10:15 AM. 02:45

056: 11.11.1975 Snowflake, AZ mp3 link
Ralph Anderson at 5:44 PM. 09:19

057: 11.13.1975 Snowflake, AZ mp3 link
Ralph Anderson at 8:15 PM. 08:13

058: 11.15.1975 Taylor, AZ mp3 link
Friend of Travis Walton's brother at 12:47 PM. 12:4
National UFO Reporting Center Hotline Recordings (1974-79)

posted on Jan, 13 2019 @ 01:55 AM
a reply to: IMSAM

Ps can the owners of the site bring travis for an AmA?

He's got an ATS account and posted about the incident in a number of posts in 2010. He made some good points and was certainly a ballsy guy.

posted on Jan, 13 2019 @ 02:04 AM
It is interesting.
But in my advancing years, the "UFO" phenomenon seems to be getting dimmer and dimmer, as the years pass.
Lets be honest now, hi tech beings from a galaxy far far away, travel to Earth, who knows how, flash a light at some hairless monkeys, knock one out, play with him, then let him go and travel (presumably) billions of miles back home and that's it???

As Arizona, New Mexico, Cali and Nevada are THE hot bed of US secret squirrel/black Ops/Skunk ops etc etc, wouldn't it be better to thinks that these chaps accidentally stumbled onto some secret operation, and were silenced somehow, much like they had done other people for 40 years.....??

Was there anything that was happening around that area in 1975??

Was there some space project...The Shuttle around or being tested?
Were there any Nuclear or Hydrogen bomb Tests being conducted around the same time?
Were there any other aircraft or cruise missiles about to be tested?

The 70s were quite active years for Military advances, particularly in fighter aircraft and missile defence systems.

Could have even been some anti grav tech being tested.

They may have just been passing something just at the wrong time....

What if there are "Others" sharing this planet, that we dont know about?? (no I dont mean Demons or Ghosts).

posted on Jan, 13 2019 @ 04:54 AM

originally posted by: IMSAM
funny synchronicity here as i was looking at this case 2 days ago

i got one question about this case

1.Travis never went under hypnosis for this case,or so i found,is this true and if not are there any transcripts of said hypnosis?

Don't know about any transcripts, but according to his own website, he has undergone hypnosis:

#2 Did you recall your experience only under regressive hypnosis?
No. I did not recall any experiences under hypnosis that I could not remember before. The hypnosis did help me verbalize my experience in greater detail, without being overwhelmed by anxiety, but did not help me regain any lost memories.

not a very well done website, but I'd never read on this event before, downloaded the book and will check the movie out, even though even he states that it was changed due to how studios do things.

posted on Jan, 13 2019 @ 05:06 AM
Up there with the best of them. 7 men don't keep a lie going for 40+ years.

posted on Jan, 13 2019 @ 05:48 AM
a reply to: Baddogma

cool.. perhaps you have thought about going to the place where the abduction took place ?
Bring a metal detector, camera and Geiger counter ?
edit on 13-1-2019 by Spacespider because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 13 2019 @ 06:19 AM
a reply to: Spacespider

Been close to the spot and it's really pretty country, but others did get there and there's been some strange effects noted, especially the trees growing faster than before the exposure to whatever energy was there... I think this video mentions the tree rings, along with the events as he remembers them.

posted on Jan, 13 2019 @ 06:40 AM
"They deserve a hearing, especially when sources such as Wikipedia nonchalantly fail to even name or indulge Walton's crew members at all."

If you are worried about this you can edit the Wikipedia article and enter their names and literally tell their life stories. Heck you can add a "sub topic into the article and talk about these "witnesses".It's really not that hard and not a conspiracy.

posted on Jan, 13 2019 @ 07:24 AM
a reply to: Baddogma

Thanks.. watching it now, sounds to me they should remake the whole movie.
I would love to see it the way he experienced it

posted on Jan, 13 2019 @ 11:54 AM
a reply to: ConfusedBrit

Came across this video a few weeks ago. She analyses the body languages of Travis and his friend Mike Rogers in an old interview they did. They also bring some debunker guy into the interview and the result is really funny, well worth watching.

posted on Jan, 13 2019 @ 12:48 PM
I know his book, " The Walton Experience" was riveting.

posted on Jan, 13 2019 @ 04:14 PM
Travis wants a movie made with the way it actually happened. He won't accept any amount of money unless it is factual. I would love to see that!

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