Saturday, March 26, 2011

Damon,Texas comments, by request from Kandinsky

Kandinsky brought up two interesting questions about the Damon TX CE2p case of 1965 written [a bit] about earlier in this blog as I plowed through the CE2p case file collection [which I promise I'll finish in my own strange pattern]. The first was the idea of this being such an early case of a big triangle. The second was that it was reported that there was some MIB involvement. Without making too strong a claim for the following responses, here are my inadequate thoughts.
The idea that this case had a triangular object involved comes directly from one of the witnesses' Project Blue Book testimonies, as you can read above. Kandinsky jogged my feeble memory, as I now recall thinking that the "triangular" element of this case might not be really what we would at first think, way back when I first read this thing. In fact I believe that what the officers meant by this was not what we today would consider one of our typical triangles at all.

What I believe that they were describing was a rough shape as seen in silhouette. I thought that when I first read this thing because their language seemed to relate to an object seen head on and "triangular" only roughly as an elongated UFO which was gradually thicker/taller in the middle. I always felt that they were viewing an object which had a sort-of swelling in the middle-top and who knows what plan-form shape if you saw it either from above or below. And two really huge lights at the two [note: not three] ends.

This was reaffirmed for me [right or wrong] by the witness sketch of the craft in the original Blue Book file. This sketch was not to represent the planform shape of the object, but rather the face-on shape.

I've wondered if the object wasn't more like a flying flattened pyramid, only looking "triangular" when viewed in silhouette from the side. For our Egyptian pyramid to the left, we'd have to flatten it a bit more, put two gigantic lights on the left and right edges, round the top a little, and get it into the air.

But, it may have been even more conventionally UFO-like than that.
I say that because of two further things from the Blue Book file. There is another drawing there which indicates that the object flew horizontally [this is the very strong implication at least of the document above]. The second reason for a more conventional feeling is the diagram below.
This as you see is the "interpretation" of what he was seeing by Officer Goode. Here the craft is pictured VERY roughly triangular in silhouette and well-rounded on the ---what shall we call it??---a Dome??? Witnesses DO struggle to make their words fit their eyeball memories, and it is not at all "odd" that someone might say this shape [silhouette-wise] is somewhat "triangular". The point should be, I suppose, is that we do not know really what the shape of this thing is/was. My guess is that it was a huge thing with a topside elevation gradually rising towards the center, which was gently sloped and maybe even a bit rounded on top.

What about Men-In-Black??? I couldn't find out where this claim comes from. Allen Hynek, Jacques Vallee, Dick Hall, James McDonald, and even one of our wildest characters, Frank Edwards, do not mention it---nor of course Blue Book. Until I find the original source for this [I have none of Coral's books nor my APRO bulletins with me, for instance] I can't even guess if there's credibility here. My intuition would say there is not. Our two witnesses [to the left] were veteran policemen and apparently tough old dudes. Not the type to be intimidated nor not talk about the fact that somebody tried to. Plus, such stuff was getting much less in the credible UFO literature by the time 1965 rolled around---at least by any legitimate government authorities. The only thing we have in the research files is the statement below. That statement pictures two guys going about their normal police business and lives and talking about this quite a bit. We UFOlogists should constantly be aware that there are a lot of people in our field who are happy just to make things up.

Kandinsky: hopefully this is a little helpful, but please research it yourself and let us know if there is more to this than my incomplete essay.


  1. Thanks for your additional information and commentary. It was the Blue Book file that ignited my interest in this old case. I have photos and reports from BB, but the sketches must be in a different roll from the main body of the report. The sketches certainly answer my questions of it being amongst the first reports of a ‘big black triangle.’ For now, I’d say unlikely with an element of maybe.

    The additional information that extends beyond the actual sighting also attracted my attention. Witnesses can sometimes embellish their accounts as time passes. This feature of human psychology and memory-processing isn’t limited to UFOs, it’s a factor of witness testimony or childhood memories. With this in mind, I wanted to find out how close to the events were the claims made and who investigated the reports?

    In the case of Deputy Goode, he set out that night with an alligator bite on his finger. According to the different contemporary accounts, it varied from ‘bleeding’ to ‘sore and swollen.’ After having his left arm outside the window of the car (McCoy was passenger with windows closed), Goode felt heat from the purple light shining from the UFO and within a couple of hours the discomfort had gone; the bite was almost healed by daylight. McCoy testifies to this being the case. They were interviewed by Tim Beckley for ‘Saucer News,’ and the claims investigated by NICAP (Bulletin Aug-Sep ’65 page 3), APRO (Aug ’65) and Jerome Clark (FSR Vol 12 No2, page 8). The healed bite was also mentioned briefly in NICAP Bulletin Nov-Dec 1965 page 4. A further reference was made by Preston Dennet in the MUFON Journal of October 1996 ( UFO Healings pp4-5).

  2. Bearing in mind the wound was almost healed within such a short period of time, subsequent field-investigators will only have seen a slightly marked finger. In that light, the supporting testimony of McCoy is important. The story was also posted in the local press (three articles). One would suspect that if the bite had never occurred, locals and family would be quick to cry foul.
    The claims of a visit by mystery men also caught my attention. Whereas McCoy has had the experience of seeing a large UFO, Goode has had healed wounds and visits from peculiar people. It made me wonder if Goode was prone to confabulation or playing jokes on reporters? Once more, McCoy supports Goode’s claim in an interview he conducted in 2009.

    “I was out of town. Two guys dressed in black, described as being small people, came to the courthouse asking for me,” McCoy said. “Dispatch told them I was out of town, and they said they’d like to talk to the other officer who was with me when we saw the UFO. The dispatcher was kind of surprised, because there had been no publicity on it.”

    The dispatcher called Bob Goode, who agreed to meet the men.

    “He said before he could tell them anything, they began telling him what we had seen and the whole circumstances,” McCoy said. “They told him that if we had stopped and not run away, the craft would have landed, we would have been greeted by beings much like we are, and we would have been invited aboard and taken for a ride and brought back unharmed as long as we didn’t say anything about it or make any report.”

    The two men told Goode they were reporters from Pasadena. They never came back to talk to McCoy.

    “Monday morning I started calling every state that had a Pasadena in it. We found nobody that had been sent here, because nobody knew anything about it,” McCoy said.

    When combined with the early APRO report, this seems to confirm the accuracy of Goode’s account that two men visited him. McCoy would have known otherwise through dispatch if Goode was making it up and wouldn’t be supporting the claims 30 odd years later. Jacques Vallee does indeed mention the bite and the visit in the appendix of ‘Magonia.’
    A few weeks ago, I emailed the local newspaper and was informed that the interviewer for the above no longer worked there. The reply was one sentence and didn’t invite further contact. I’ve tried to locate the reporter without success; she appears to have been an occasional writer. Further attempts to make contact with the families of Goode and McCoy have also failed. Essentially, the trail from here in England had run cold, hence my asking if you could add any more information.
    For anyone interested in any of the references above, I put together a 30 page collection of the images, clippings and interview and uploaded it

  3. I am confident of the "healing" element of the case as nearly every early investigator mentions it. The only issue about the healing is whether Goode's feeling of "heat" was the result of this "sunburn" like energy we see elsewhere so often in the CE2 pile of incidents [which it very likely was] and whether that energy [which usually seems to be a "general" energy rather than a specific "beam"] was, in itself, capable of stimulating Goode's system to do its own healing [rather than this being some action of "intent" on the UFO's part]. The Damon case has the feeling of "accidental" healing, but who can say?? The "purple-ness" of the light makes one think of near-ultraviolet, while the "heat" makes one think of invisible infrared or microwave. Either end off the visible spectrum might be the cause of "heat" sensations and body stimulations in their own ways. [i.e. both UV and IR will "agitate" biochemical and macromolecular structures in their different ways of assault.

  4. Regarding the MIB: who knows??? It wouldn't be the first time some guys played a joke on their buddy. So it's too bad that we have no early hint of any detail of this alleged "incident" in the files. There is no doubt that both of them were visited by the USAF or we wouldn't have Leach's report. They could have been seen more briefly by others as well. APRO associates were not all of equal quality. Just as with current day MUFON, there were solid people and there were ones who were extremely gullible and looking for the wildest possible ideas. Whichever associate heard about this case may have made an emotional leap about the nature of one of these "visits" back then. With so many opportunities to mention this to quality investigators across the next few years, and never doing so, it's hard to be too enthusiastic about this claim. A vague overly speculative APRO report followed by a trick on a buddy could modify the intrigue of this claim. So could a "visit" from meddling UFOlogists which was not unknown at the time [people from fringe UFOlogy who would insinuate themselves into witnesses' homes to get "inside" info, snatch pictures, or apparently "have fun".] And the last element would be the accuracy, especially as regards exactly when the alleged visit occurred, in the interview many years later. This is why the quicker we get info the better. WAY better.

  5. Thanks for your comments; the odd aspects have been a bee in my bonnet for a while now. Goode's experience was so distinctive from McCoy's that it would be interesting to ask his friends or relations if he ever deviated from, or embellished the account.

    Unfortunately, like you point out, it's important to get these details ASAP. All these years later is no place to start expecting progress. On the other hand, who knows? Perhaps a small detail may arise?

    The sighting and the healed wound remain quite solid...the visitors less so. Even if they did exist as described (as you point out), there's no way of knowing if they were officials, ufologists or tricksters. McCoy's suggestive comment that they were 'small' could be an apocryphal addition from years of contamination by the mythology of the subject. On the whole, I tend to view the 'MiB' mythology as a red herring although there are exceptions that have been supported by FOIA requests and file releases in the UK.

    Thanks again for sharing, however briefly, an interest in the case. I appreciate it.

  6. Hiya Prof, as luck would have it,I was listening to one of Wendy Connors' CDs and there's an interview with McCoy. It's on the Audio Primer II CD and at 17 minutes into segment 50 and isn't specifically listed in the contents document provided with the CD.

    Understandably perhaps, McCoy stuck to the bare details of the account and didn't mention Goode's bite or apparent healing. The point that stands out here is that he described how they left their vehicle to look at the light through binoculars.

    It's a minor thing, but the BB interview files, and any subsequent record of the incident, don't mention getting out to look. Incidentally, the radiation tests detailed in the BB file don't include tests on the binoculars

    The interview reinforces a couple of sentiments that your blog has cultivated;

    1, Witness interviews need to be conducted ASAP and be detailed.
    2, Archives can be greater than the sum of their parts.

  7. Thanks for that information. Ironically, it's possible that the tape that Wendy used is currently in my basement. She and Mike Hall and Jan Aldrich and, I think, Tom Tulien came for several days years ago and "mined" the place. I had many CUFOS tapes from the Hynek and NICAP collection that I was caretaking for them/us. Wendy spent all her time re-recording them or snapping shots of my historical picture collection [which became the early core of her "UFO products" that she has sold]. Many of those tapes had multiple "topics" on them. Thanks for the "news" as I could never listen to nor remember them all.

  8. With today's easy internet access to information, I noticed that the phase of the moon on September 3, 1965 was about one day past the first quarter or what is commonly referred to as a "half moon", so McCoy is mistaken when he says that it was "almost full". He also stated that it was almost directly overhead. However, moonset for that location was 12:19AM on the night in question, so even assuming that the deputies made their observation at 11:00 PM the moon could not have been more than 15-20 degrees above the horizon. With the moon that low in the sky, it also could not have cast a shadow directly beneath the object as the deputies stated it did.

  9. Yeah, I noticed that too. In fact, going by McCoy's statement that the "object" was 150' away and 100' above the ground, we can imagine a right triangle with a base one and one half times its height. Such a triangle will have angles of 90, 57 and 33 degrees, which means that he must have seen the object as being 33 degrees above the horizon. However the Air Force reported that the moon was 15 degrees above the horizon and yet McCoy remembers it as being above the object and casting a shadow from it. Well, we can just say that McCoy actually did see the moon above the object, meaning that the object was lower than 15 degrees, maybe actually about 10 degrees. But if it actually was 100' in the air, we're now left with a triangle with a base about 6 times its height or 600'. And yet Goode (but not McCoy who was 3' from him) felt heat from the object at this distance. Isn't the more reasonable explanation simply that Goode felt heat from the engine and exhaust of the car?

    These guys were so spooked that it's impossible to know what's valid in their report.



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