[CNI News thanks Don Allen and Errol Bruce-Knapp for forwarding this story, which was posted on the International Society for UFO Research (ISUR) web site, concerning unusual UFO photos and other information that came to light in Alabama in mid-September, 1996. ISUR's web site is located at: http://www.isur.com/articles/valley.html]
Valley, Alabama, ISUR NEWS Special -- A local radio station and newspaper received six different photos from an anonymous source that show a capsule-shape UFO hovering over a farm pasture. In a letter accompanying the photos, the source claims to have taken the remarkable UFO photographs on the 16th of September, 1996.
In his commentary the phototaker says that he was repairing a fence on his property when his dog started barking loudly. Going over to where his dog was he looked up to see a low-flying capsule-shaped UFO hovering and moving slowly over one of his cow pastures.
The UFO captured in each of the photos resembles the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo space capsules that the United States launched in the early years of its space program. Black to dark green, the cone-shaped capsule, when blown-up, shows a black teflon-like covered bottom and a flange or rim that goes around near the top of the unknown object. In each photo the UFO is shown at a slightly different position and elevation, making it more difficult to hoax, according to researchers who have examined the photographs.
The photos and a copy of the letter were aired publicly for the first time on TV-33 in Lagrange, Georgia on 26 September 1996. On the "Heston & Steve" show, the two hosts, Heston Yates and Steve Smoots, along with John C. Thompson and Jimmy Smith, field investigators for the International Society for UFO Research (ISUR), speculated about whether the UFO photos are real. All of them agreed that if the photos were part of a hoax, it was a most strange and clever one. Mr. Thompson said on the program that he was "most favorably impressed by the photos."
He also has stated since then that he has two witnesses who saw similar shaped UFOs in May and July in the LaGrange area, which is only 20 miles from Valley. Another witness that he has located says he and others saw the exact craft, incredibly, 25 years earlier in Atlanta.
Mr. Smith, a long-time investigator of UFOs, said the photos appeared genuine. He also said that he himself, in 1971, had seen a UFO with a likeness of what the photos depict. He then went on to relate that the 1971 UFO had cut off power to his pickup while he observed it.
The photos, along with a copy of the letter from the alleged phototaker, have now been sent to Jeff Sainio, a photography expert who specializes in analyzing UFO video and photos. Mr. Sainio, who often does photo analysis for the popular "Sightings" TV program, will [try to] determine if the photos really show a UFO.
In the meantime, it is hoped that the person who took these photos will step forward and allow access to the negatives that the photos were made from. All persons involved in investigating the photos are assuring the phototaker over TV and radio that if he wishes, his anonymity will be protected.
Following is the text of the original letter that accompanied the Valley UFO photos:
To whom it may concern,
I am writing this letter with much trepidation due to the strange matters which it addresses. Let me first apologize for my anonymity. I am a 'well known and respected' member of this community. I remain in the veil of secrecy in order to protect my family and myself from the ridicule which always follows matters such as these.
Enclosed are several pictures which I took on September 16, 1996 from my westernmost pasture.
As you can see they show a strange object which hovered for several minutes above my land.
Until I actually saw this 'craft', I had no belief whatsoever in UFOs or the like. Now I must admit a drastic change in that belief.
I had left the house in my truck around 2:30 to repair some of the fence line on my westernmost pasture. I had my 35mm camera with me because I occasionally took pictures of deer and the like which often grazed in the adjoining pasture. I took my 8 month old beagle 'Spot' with me.
When we arrived at the fence line I got out of my truck and 'Spot' ran out and began running around sniffing the ground etc. I began cutting out a piece of rusted fence with my bolt cutter when 'Spot' started to whine and bark like no dog I have ever heard before. I thought he had gotten stung by a hornet or been bitten by a snake, so I went to investigate. He stood about 200 feet from my position and faced towards the south of the fenceline. I ran toward him until I got about halfway there. That's when I saw what you now see in the photographs.
It was a large black object that was hovering over some trees in the horizon. I stood there for a few moments and then remembered my camera. I ran back to the truck, got out the camera and ran to stand next to 'Spot'. I snapped a few pictures and noticed that it was making a high pitched whistling sound. I guess this was what was making 'Spot' howl so.
I took a few more pictures as it slowly moved and then hovered some more. At one point it climbed about 4000 feet straight up. It didn't make a sound and it moved as fast as a lightening bolt. I kept taking pictures until I ran out of film. The 'thing' remained in my sight for about another five minutes and then it seemed to crumble in upon itself and vanish.
Now let me tell you I was as scared as I have ever been. I shook for a long time after it left.
There is one other strange thing I think I should report. About 10 minutes after the 'thing' vanished there came three black (or dark green) helicopters which flew low to the ground for a few minutes, then left. None of these helicopters had any kind of markings. Now this may not be related, but it just seemed strange.
Well, that's really all I have to say on the subject. You can do with this letter and pictures what you will. I just needed to let someone know what I saw. Thank you for your time.
Original file name: .CNI - UFO Over Alabama
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