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Coyne UFO Case - Army Helicopter's UFO Scare Still A Mystery, 40 Years Later.

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posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 04:35 PM
The full Huffington Post article can be read at the link below but did think this was quite a refreshing UFO piece from the mainstream media about one of the most mysterious UFO incidents of the lot.

Army Helicopter's UFO Scare Still A Mystery, 40 Years Later.

Forty years ago today, a four-man crew of an Army Reserve helicopter was flying over Mansfield, Ohio, around 11:00 p.m. when they "encountered a near midair collision with an unidentified flying object," according to the official report, signed and submitted by the crew after the incident.

A full explanation for this terrifying UFO close encounter has never been offered, and to this day, the helicopter-UFO incident remains one of the most credible -- and terrifying -- in the history of the subject.

The commander of the helicopter, Maj. Larry Coyne, and his crew, thought at first that the light on the horizon was a radio tower beacon.

"We were flying along at about 2,500 feet when the crew chief on the helicopter observed a red light on the east horizon. He then informed me that the light was closing on the helicopter -- that it was coming at us on a collision course," Coyne told this reporter in 1975.

"I looked to the right and observed that the object became bigger and the light became brighter, and I began to descend the helicopter toward the ground, to get out of the collision course path. We were descending and this object was like a missile locked onto the helicopter, only it came at us on a perpendicular angle, to hit us almost broadside.

"It looked like we were going to collide with it and we braced for impact, and then I heard the crewmen in the back say, 'Look up!' and I observed this craft stopped directly in front of us -- stopped -- it was hovering, right over the helicopter!"

Watch this video excerpt of the Coyne account from a documentary report. The story continues after the video.

With the unknown object hovering in the air above the helicopter, Coyne and his crew suddenly noticed a light coming out of the aft end of it -- a light that swung 90 degrees and came into their cabin.

"It was a bright green light. And all of the red night lights that we utilize for night navigation were dissolved in this green light -- the whole cabin turned green. It hit all of us directly in the face."

Coyne and his crew knew they were encountering something extraordinary.

"We assumed it was a high-performance fighter, but when it stopped directly in front of us, then all four of us realized that was no high-performance aircraft. This craft, from the angle that we saw it, was cigar-shaped. It had no wings, no vertical or horizontal stabilizer, was approximately 60 feet long, 15-20 feet in height."

What occurred next was like something out of science fiction.

"We were at 1,700 feet," Coyne recalled. "Then this craft began to move slowly to the west away from us. At this time, I was worried we were going to hit the ground, and I looked at my altimeter and our helicopter was at 3,500 feet, climbing 1,000 feet a minute with no changes in the control. We went from 1,700 feet to 3,500 feet in a matter of seconds and never knew it!"

The helicopter topped out at 3,800 feet and the four men felt a bump, "like turbulence, at which time we had control of the aircraft again. I had control and we went back down to 2,500 feet and then continued on to Cleveland," Coyne said.

"As far as the vehicle itself, there's no doubt in our minds what it looked like. A craft that can move at terrific speeds in excess of 1,000 knots, and then stop on a dime, maintains altitude, can change altitude, climb, descend. To encounter a UFO when it approaches your aircraft, you have no idea what it is. I think if it wanted to collide with us, it could have. You can't get away from it -- you don't have that much time to respond!"

Lending credibility to this case were eyewitnesses on the ground who observed the UFO-helicopter encounter. The Army didn't prevent Coyne and his crew from speaking out about their experience. In fact, Coyne was allowed to recount the UFO incident to the United Nations in 1978, as seen below, under the sponsorship of Grenada..

Huffington Post

For those folks who have never heard of the Coyne incident (or want to know more about it) then there's a great old thread by Internos linked below and although many of the video/picture links are now defunct it still contains some truly interesting information.

The Coyne incident, Mansfield, Ohio, 1973

Also there's some relevant government documents, news articles, images and links on this page..

Captain Lawrence Coyne UFO Helicopter case 1973

as well as fixed videos and pdf files below exploring aspects like testimony submitted to the United Nations UFO hearings in 1978, pilot interviews, separately located witnesses on the ground and (IMHO) the highly dubious 'debunk' from Philip Klass.


Twilight Zone's Rod Serling presents the case:

Huff Post's Lee Speigel on the case and how it went to the United Nations:

Rare interview with one of the other pilots - see 47:20:

PDF Files:

Separately located witnesses - see page 49:

Regional Encounters - the FC files. A century of UFO sightings and Close encounters in the Mid West. - Francis Ridge. (PDF File)

Jenny Ziedman examines the case (and the debunk by Philip Klass):

UFO Helicopter Close Encounter Over Ohio (PDF File)

posted on Oct, 26 2013 @ 04:41 PM
Wow, that's some background work you dug up on this !!!

Excellent stuff!!!! Thanks!

posted on Oct, 27 2013 @ 04:42 AM
Interesting! Pity I can't see the youtube vids but found a vid on

Coyne UH-1H Helicopter UFO Incident 1973

Good to have credible witnesses to UFO encounters. Make the case for UFO existence even more plausible!

posted on Oct, 27 2013 @ 06:20 PM
reply to post by karl 12

Yet another interesting case, adding for future reading.

posted on Oct, 30 2013 @ 01:07 AM
Appreciate the replies guys and when it comes to freaky UFO cases I'd say this one is definitely up there in the top ten -the close range testimony from the chief pilot just about sums things up:

"The object that I viewed that particular evening had a high degree of technology and was composed of a structure and a design that we do not have - the object could move through the atmosphere without causing any turbulence, it could move at high speeds below ten thousand feet and there were no vertical or horizontal stabilizers, no landing gear, no source of propulsion reflected on the craft - it looked like it could fly in space".


Also interesting to note this incident occurred in the middle of a huge UFO wave in the area and Kenny Young's site below does a great job of listing all the other reports:

The Great UFO Wave of Ohio

The unusual aerial events happening during the October 1973 time-period remains one of the most fascinating of all UFO happenings, an intense and disturbing siege that no dismissive hypothesis or explanatory venture will easily rob of its strangeness.



posted on Oct, 30 2013 @ 01:39 AM
Frederich Valentich an Australian pilot had the same experience before he disappeared. His encounter, which was recorded at the time, has a good percentage of the same given information.

posted on Oct, 30 2013 @ 03:28 AM

Frederich Valentich an Australian pilot had the same experience before he disappeared. His encounter, which was recorded at the time, has a good percentage of the same given information.

Good point Sussy and there's a great thread below about the incident from OzWeatherman:

19:10 FS Delta Sierra Juliet, roger and how large would the - er - object be?

19:10:19 DSJ Delta Sierra Juliet, Melbourne, it seems like it's stationary. What I'm doing right now is orbiting and the thing is just orbiting on top of me also. It's got a green light and sort of metallic like, it's all shiny on the outside.

What Happened to Frederick Valentich? Possibly the scariest UFO case ever

This case from the Mona Channel near Puerto Rico on 28th June, 1980 is also very similar (right down to the fact that the pilots in both aircrafts were never seen or heard of again).

“Mayday, Mayday, Ercoupe ocho cero, eight zero, zero, Hotel. We can see a strange object in our course, we are lost, Mayday, Mayday.”

“Ah we are going from Santo Domingo to ah San Juan International but we found ah a weird object in our course that made us change course about three different times we got it right in front of us now at one o’clock, our heading is zero seven zero degrees…our altitude one thousand six hundred a zero seven zero degrees…our VORs got lost off frequency…”

“Right now we are supposed to be a about thirty five miles from the coast of Puerto Rico but we have something weird in front of us that make us lose course all the time I changed our course a second (unintelligible) our present heading right now is three hundred we are right again in the same stuff sir.”

The Disappearance of flight N3808H, Puerto Rico, 1980


posted on Oct, 30 2013 @ 11:48 AM
The description of the green light, the way it flooded the cabin and washed everything out, makes me think that it was a laser of some kind. Sounds a lot like it.

But having it remind me of a laser, something I understand as a human manufactured thing, tends to make me think the rest of it was human manufactured, too. Some kind of very experimental black project craft.

Don't know, though. Wasn't there.

posted on Aug, 26 2014 @ 11:59 PM

originally posted by: Blue Shift

Some kind of very experimental black project craft.

Who knows mate, maybe it was - does sound like a very bizarre one capable of some pretty nifty flight characteristics though.

Crew Chief Robert Yanaksek also states in the video above that the object was huge and the object was described as having 'no vertical or horizontal stabilizers, no landing gear, no source of propulsion' so god knows what was flying about over Ohio 40 years ago -that's without even mentioning the 'levitating helicopter' aspect.

Could be bunk but Jim Carver from the 'Rust Belt Chronicles' also claims he and his family were witnesses to the event and goes into lots more detail at the link below - researcher Kevin Randle also brings up the debunking shenanigans of Philip Klass in this article.

Whenever I recall the Coyne/Helicopter/UFO incident in Mansfield, Ohio on October 18th, 1973 I get goose-bumps. 40 years later, it’s still considered one of the greatest UFO events in history. My family, neighbors, other residents and 4 Army Reserve crewman above Mansfield, Ohio were about to witness a event that defied logic and change our opinion forever..

My brother, Bill recalls the UFO shooting across the sky towards the chopper. Everyone thought a mid-air collision was about to happen. Captain Coyne set the throttle for a 20-degree dive to avoid the crash. The UFO was travelling at an estimated 600 knots and incredibly the object stopped above the chopper. My brother recalls watching the UFO and helicopter climb from 1,700 feet to 3,800 feet straight-up in the air. Captain Coyne still had the chopper set to a dive position.



posted on Feb, 26 2015 @ 12:01 AM
More info, photographs and witness sketches in this short vid.

The Coyne case (or "Army helicopter incident") stands out as, perhaps the most credible (in the "high strangeness" category) of the 1973 wave. An Army Reserve helicopter crew of four men encountered a gray, metallic-looking, cigar-shaped object, with unusual lights and maneuvers, as they were airborne between Columbus and Cleveland, Ohio.

posted on Mar, 21 2015 @ 01:12 AM
More from Professor Swords on the case - stated the witness family in the car on the ground still talk of the event decades later.

"I remember that the whole top of the sky was lit up a dull fluorescent green."

Charles Cyrus.

Also more on Jennie Zeidman's monograph:


posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 06:57 PM
Researcher Kevin Randle discusses this case and debunker Philip Klass.

October 18,1973: The Coyne Helicopter Case and Philip Klass

posted on Jun, 24 2015 @ 07:03 PM
Thanks for this thread!

posted on Jun, 25 2015 @ 02:48 PM
Great case. I love these older, hard to explain cases, and this one is one of the best. I thinking the skeptics explanation was a meteorite

posted on Jun, 25 2015 @ 06:39 PM

originally posted by: Jay-morris
Great case. I love these older, hard to explain cases, and this one is one of the best. I thinking the skeptics explanation was a meteorite

Well, to be fair, a lot of bolides containing copper glow a very bright green when they burn up in the atmosphere, and as bright as they can get it can really be hard to tell how far away they are. The encounter didn't last a very long time, and as surprised as the pilots were the "tractor beam" effects couldn't necessarily be ruled out as them jamming at the controls as a reaction to what they saw as a potential collision. Nice drawings, though.

posted on Sep, 13 2015 @ 09:20 PM
Recent news article in the Mansfield News Journal brings new witnesses forward:

UFO witnesses come forward decades later

Calls began to the News Journal just hours after a story was published Sunday in the print edition and on the News Journal’s digital platforms. It was about a well-known UFO incident in the Mansfield area on Oct. 18, 1973. An investigator is seeking witnesses to what happened that evening.

Several current and past area residents contacted the newspaper and a handful called Mutual UFO Network investigator Terry Hamilton.

No one can say for sure just what was in the sky that fall day more than 40 years ago. But many who saw it say it was strange enough they can remember it as vividly as if it happened yesterday.

Brian Stevens describes what looked like an orange ball fixed in the sky and reflecting the light of the setting sun.

“I couldn’t take my eyes off it,” said Stevens, who was 13 at the time. “The next day, when it was on the front page of the paper, I felt privileged to have seen it.”

Stevens said when he saw the object, he was walking on Ohio 39 in the Roseland neighborhood and looking toward Westbrook Country Club, which was where the object appeared to be hovering.

Later that night, Glenn Stout was on break from his job at Mansfield Tire and was standing on the back dock with some coworkers when he saw what he describes as “a crazy looking light” moving toward and nearly colliding with a helicopter in the area of Westbrook Country Club.

When he saw the news that a UFO had interfered with the flight path of an an Army Reserve helicopter over Mansfield, he was sure he had witnessed the same incident..

Earlier in the day, Judith Hamm was outside a home near Pavonia when she saw what looked from afar like a plane flying at an alarming speed toward another plane. The object then veered away and disappeared.

“I almost screamed because I thought they were going to hit,” she said. “It actually was headed right toward the plane like it was deliberate.”

Hamm said she thought the object may have been a military craft, but it moved more quickly than any plane she has seen before or since, and oddly, it seemed to move just as easily backwards as forwards.

Les Kiser has no doubts about he saw that day— a UFO.

“I’m a big believer in UFOs now because I know what I saw, and it wasn’t anything military,” Kiser said.

He was 13 years old at the time and was working in the back yard of his Burger Avenue home with his 30-year-old sister when he saw an oval-shaped craft with two red lights. The red lights disappeared, and then a green light appeared and lit up a nearby helicopter.

Kiser estimates the craft appeared to be about the size of a semi-trailer. He recalls worrying the craft would make the helicopter crash.

“My sister said, ‘That’s an Army helicopter, so it’s probably the military. Don’t say anything to anyone about it.’ So I didn’t,” Kiser said. “It was so strong for me that I never lost it in my mind even though I haven’t talked about it in 40 years.”


posted on Jan, 11 2016 @ 12:35 AM
Dr Peter Sturrock discusses the Coyne case in a recent article and also addresses the theory from debunker Philp Klass about the object being a fireball from the Orionid meteor shower.

Peter Sturrock is an emeritus professor of applied physics at Stanford University and one of the very few scientists who has publicly expressed a great deal of interest in UFOs and acted on that interest by twice surveying colleagues on the subject which resulted in some very surprising findings..

I also asked Professor Sturrock if he had a favorite UFO case and he replied, “The Coyne helicopter case.” On October 18, 1973, the four-man crew of an Army Reserve helicopter heading towards Cleveland from Columbus had an otherworldly encounter with a UFO at about 10:30 PM as they were flying near Mansfield, Ohio. “This craft, from the angle that we saw it, was cigar-shaped. It had no wings, no vertical or horizontal stabilizer, was approximately 60 feet long, 15-20 feet in height. We were at 1,700 feet, then this craft began to move slowly to the west away from us. At this time, I was worried we were going to hit the ground, and I looked at my altimeter and our helicopter was at 3,500 feet, climbing 1,000 feet a minute with no changes in the control. We went from 1,700 feet to 3,500 feet in a matter of seconds and never knew it!,” Lawrence Coyne, the commander of the helicopter recalled. There were civilian witnesses on the ground as well. “I had driven a few blocks from my house and was driving north on Paul Boulevard. I stopped the car once I saw how close the UFO was above the tree line over-looking Sunset Park. The chopper was beneath my view. Here in plain view was the UFO, green light on the front, white light and a red light on the rear on a nearly sixty-foot long dark metallic-grey object that had the appearance of a cigar shaped stogie. I sat in my car marveling at its appearance. It made no sound. Suddenly the UFO shot off towards the northwest and in literally seconds it was the size of a star in the distance. Even faster, the object disappeared from sight.” said Bill Carver, brother of Jim Carver, the author of the article linked above.

Not surprisingly, skeptic Phil Klass attempted to explain the case away but the credibility of the witnesses involved and the detail of their reports render his explanation implausible.

“Any theory of the object’s being a meteor (UFO skeptic Philip Klass maintains that the object was a “fireball of the Orionid meteor shower”) can readily be rejected on the basis of: (1) the duration of the event (an estimated 300 seconds); (2) the marked deceleration and hard-angle maneuver of the object at closest approach; (3) the precisely defined shape of the object; and (4) the horizon-to-horizon flight path. The possibility of a high-performance aircraft likewise is untenable when one examines the positions and colors of the lights with respect to the flight path of the object. To have presented the reported configurations, and been in accordance with FAA regulations, an aircraft would have had to be flying sideways, either standing on its tail, tail-to to the helicopter, or upside-down head-on.”


posted on May, 18 2016 @ 10:49 PM
Four extra pages ofUSAR documents about the case from researcher Paul Dean (and great commentary as well).

Rarely Seen US Army Documents Available Again

posted on Dec, 27 2016 @ 03:02 AM
Rare 'Sightings' episode about the case.

posted on Dec, 27 2016 @ 08:37 AM
Google Thomas Mantell and note the location.

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