Sunday, October 4, 2015

In 1968 More Than 200 People Saw A UFO In Redlands California

There was a UFO spotted in the skies over Redlands in 1968

There was an unexplained celestial event right here in Redlands, California, on a night in 1968.
It was Feb. 4, shortly before 7:30 p.m., when an object, which did fit the classic definition of a “flying saucer,” appeared over North Redlands for some two to three minutes. Besides its appearance, it attracted peoples’ attention because, as one witness said in a story in the Daily Facts, it made “a swishing sound.”
Dogs barked. Frightened children hid in their homes. Adults were spooked, and some were even sickened by the appearance.
Soon police lines had received numerous calls about the thing, and by the time the event was over, around 200 witnesses had seen what appeared to be a craft, about 50 feet in diameter, with a row of windows, as it hovered some 200 to 300 feet above the ground before moving slowly northwest across the city, disappearing in the direction of the then operational Norton Air Force Base. Later that evening a similar object was seen above Victorville.
Shortly after the sighting, Dr. Philip Seff, then a University of Redlands geology professor, was contacted by a UFO study group at the University of Colorado and asked to look into the event. Seff was joined on the team by Dr. Jay Krantz, a professor of chemistry, and Judson “Sandy” Sanderson, the math department chairman.
After a three-month study, none of these serious scientists could explain what Redlands residents had seen. While sure that it was not a natural phenomenon, they couldn’t attribute it to any known terrestrial technology either.
None of these men is with us today, but Sanderson’s wife, Beverly, who’s now in her early 80s, still holds many vivid memories of the time her husband became an expert on UFOs. I had a chance to sit down with her over the summer in the Redlands home she’s lived in for almost 50 years.
Sanderson began by telling me that the University of Colorado wanted a mathematician like her husband “on board” because witnesses would say, “’Well, it was above that tree,’ or ‘It was above that house.’ Well, you get all those different coordinates around and you figure out how high that tree is—back to your basic algebra—and then you can estimate how high above that it was flying.”
Also called in to help was U of R art instructor John Brownfield, who produced a drawing from a composite of what the witnesses told him. Sanderson said Brownfield was meticulous in his efforts not to lead the witnesses based on what others had said, and even tested them in various ways to see if their stories would vary. He based his final drawing on what turned out to be remarkably consistent descriptions.
Witnesses were told not to discuss the UFO sighting
Mrs. Sanderson still feels that many credible UFO witnesses through the years have been told to keep quiet about what they’d seen.
“I always thought it was interesting that none of the airfields around ever had any record of anything. I think they were told: ‘You don’t have a record of anything. No, you did not see that.’ If you’re in the military and you’re told you didn’t see that, you didn’t’ see it. It’s that simple.”
These days Beverly Sanderson still keeps an open mind when it comes to flying saucers.
“I’m still not sure if they’re really there, or if they’re something else. Well, obviously it was something.” She allows that the Redlands object may have been some sort of secret military craft, but notes that sightings haven’t happened “just here. They’re sighted all over the world.”
She thinks keeping an open mind is important and that this same attitude was the one taken by her husband and his colleagues.
“That was one of the first things Phil (Seff) said when he was interviewed: we’re scientists and so we need that open mind.”
Sanderson remembers that her husband later became a sort of “father confessor” when it came to UFOs and told me a story about the time a couple came up to him at a party in the ‘70’s and asked if they could speak with him for a minute.
“They’d been going west on Highland,” Sanderson says. “They saw something and pulled over to the side of the street to watch it. And it just hovered there for ever so long. Their conclusion was: don’t tell anybody—until that night. They finally came up to Sandy and said, ‘We did see this.’”

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