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Air Force Pilots Abducted

Andrew Griffin writes in thetowntalk.com about two Air Force pilots who may have been abducted 50 years ago. Canadian UFO investigator Gordon Heath has been trying to find out what happened to Air Force pilot 1st Lt. Felix E. "Gene" Moncla Jr. and 2nd Lt. Robert Wilson. After he read about their possible abduction on the internet, he went to Avoyelles Parish to look for local newspaper coverage and interview Moncla's friends and family.

Moncla was stationed at Kinross Air Force Base in Michigan's Upper Peninsula when the abduction occurred. On the night of Nov. 23, 1953, Moncla and Wilson were ordered to go up in their Northrup F-89 jet to identify a UFO flying over restricted airspace near the American-Canadian border.

As Moncla's jet approached the craft, a radar operator noted that the two blips on the radarscope merged. Moncla and Wilson's jet disappeared and the UFO continued northward towards Canada, vanishing off the radar screen. A search team never found any bodies or wreckage. An Air Force communications officer said he heard Moncla's Cajun drawl over the radio long after it was reported he?d vanished.

At first, the Air Force said the F-89 and the UFO merged on the radar screen and the Associated Press ran a story with that information. But the Air Force later said the object they'd been chasing was a Canadian jet. The Royal Canadian Air Force disputed that version of the story. In 1968, fifteen years later, some prospectors near the Canadian city of Sault Ste. Marie found wreckage from a jet. However, it may have been from an F-89 on a training mission from Truax Field that crashed the same night as Moncla's F-89.

Beryl Moncla is married to Gene's cousin Buddy, who's now 77. She says, "All we were told was that their plane went down and they never were found." Buddy says, "I was told that the last transmission recorded was (Gene) saying, 'I'm going in for a closer look.'"

A memorial to Moncla erected in the Sacred Heart Catholic Cemetery in Moreauville reads: "Disappeared Nov. 23, 1953, intercepting a UFO over Canadian border as pilot of a Northrup F-89 Jet Plane."

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A reader familiar with this case offers the following correction:

1) Lt. Moncla and Lt. Wilson were stationed at Truax Field in Madison, Wisconsin. At the time of the incident, they along with several other crews were on temporary assignment to Kinross Air Force Base in Michigan (while the base personnel were on gunnery practice in Yuma, Arizona).

2) The Air Force officer who heard Moncla on radio was PILOT Lt. Mingenbach (not a communications officer), who was flying another F-89 at the time, searching for the missing F-89. He also flew out of Kinross.

3) Another F-89 from Truax Field did crash earlier that day in the marsh beside Lake Wingra in Madison Wisconsin. This aircraft and crew WERE recovered and were NEVER missing. Note that the purpose of this flight was to perform tests on the engine afterburners. These tests were completed, and the plane was on its way home when it inexplicably dove into the marsh.

4) The official USAF Accident Report (Lake Superior incident) stated the other craft was later identified as an RCAF Dakota C-47, which is a propeller powered aircraft, not a jet. (Yes. The RCAF did deny that their aircraft was involved in the incident.)

I know that some of these mistakes were printed in the original article, but I think it would be less confusing to future researchers and other persons interested in the story, if the information provided on your website was corrected. It is sometimes difficult as a researcher to get correct information on this case, because there are so many versions of this incident documented on the internet. Of course, the USAF themselves contributed to this confusion. I'm not sure if this was a deliberate strategy or just because they themselves had many different accounts making the rounds.

NOTE: This news story, previously published on our old site, will have any links removed.


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