Tag Archives: By Ray Stanford

Update on the ‘Search for the Socorro UFO (Case) Footage’

Lonnie Zamora, Sgt. Sam Chavez and Ray Stanford.
Lonnie Zamora, left (in plain clothes); N.M State Police Sgt. Sam Chavez (middle) and NICAP investigator Ray Stanford, right. (Credit: USAF Photo by Allen Hynek, April 29, 1964)

By Ben Moss and Tony Angiola
The UFO Chronicles

     After the original article was published in the MUFON Journal, much has happened behind the scenes.

First, I want to thank everyone for their assistance in searching for the footage. A lot of MUFON members did their due diligence and searched high and low, many following up on the leads that Tony Angiola and I had already followed up on.

But, then we had some news; John Steiger, a Former MUFON member, found the episode of Sightings we were seeking, season 4 episode 13, and sent us the link from YouTube. Tony immediately downloaded this episode, and just a few days later it was removed from the site.

After viewing, we found that this was indeed the show that a woman saw on TV regarding the famous Socorro case of an egg shaped craft landing in 1964. After watching this episode the woman was compelled to go up in her attic, find her father’s footage and send it to Sightings. This is the film that proved to be very hard to track down.

Three very important things occurred after our article was printed in the MUFON Journal. First, someone who had read the article alerted Ray Stanford to our search. Ray Stanford wrote the definitive book on this case (classified as an UNKNOWN in Project Blue Books files) called “Socorro Saucer in a Pentagon Pantry”. This is a “must read” regarding this case since Ray was onsite just a few days after the event. Ray located additional witnesses, and conducted multiple interviews with Lonnie Zamora and Dr. J. Allen Hynek.

Ray contacted Jan Harzan at MUFON who forwarded his information to us. We contacted Ray and have spoken many times about this event. Ray has incredible information about this fascinating case, which has been debated over the years and even called a college hoax. There has been lots of misinformation regarding the events and results of the investigation. Ray is also going to release some incredible new facts about the Socorro event, and I can personally say that his data will eliminate any hoax theories and bring this case back into the news.

The second result of our article was connecting with Rob Mercer, Ohio State Section Director, who acquired original Blue Book documents on Craigslist. These turned out to be original, hand written notes by the principle Blue Book investigator, along with several other documents that all came from the Blue Book investigation of Socorro.

Ben introduced Rob to Ray Stanford and these important documents were shared and found to be authentic. The documents indicate a serious investigation by the Air Force, proving that this was a real event as described by Lonnie Zamora, and manipulation by Air Force personnel to release a different insignia on the side of the craft. This was likely an attempt to compare the real marking to any other reports of this object and discard them as a hoax if they did not match the ‘real’ insignia seen by Mr. Zamora.

The third result was a surprise. Ben was contacted by John Ventre, MUFON State Director for Pennsylvania. He met John in Los Angeles when we filmed for season 2 of Hangar1 in August. John contacted Ben and said that he had recorded the long sought after footage on VHS from the TV show Sightings. He thought it was too good to be true but three days later John mailed him a CD of that exact footage, thus ending a long and strange search for this piece of history. This is a great example of how working together, sharing data, and investigative skills resulted in us finding the footage.

The film shows the family at the site just several days after the landing, and brief shots of the landing area. It’s a great addition to the case file and is another piece of the Socorro event history. (See below):

What follows is Ray’s update on the Socorro case that points out an important piece of evidence and also clears up some of the bad info that has recently appeared in articles and blogs about the Socorro Incident.

Burned Paper From The Socorro Site

Ray Stanford By Ray Stanford
The UFO Chronicles

Ben Moss and Tony Angiola have been concerned about finding an 8mm movie they hoped would bring a worthwhile look at the Socorro CE III site of Friday April 24, 1964. So, this seems an appropriate time to provide readers a close look at just one of many trace evidences collected at the landing site.

Socorro Saucer In A Pentagon Pantry
As described in detail in my 211-page book, SOCORRO SAUCER IN A PENTAGON PANTRY, 1976, Blue Apple Books, both Dr. J. Allen Hynek, chief scientific consultant to the USAF’s Project Blue book, and I arrived in Socorro, New Mexico late on Tuesday April 28 1964 to investigate the case. On the next morning, via Socorro police dispatcher Mike Martinez, Hynek requested that I be allowed to join him, and the primary witness (Socorro policeman) Lonnie Zamora, along with New Mexico State police Sergeant Sam Chavez at the landing site.
Dr. Hynek made that request over the strong objections of Sergeant Chavez, who wanted the site closed to everyone except the three of them. Fortunately, Hynek knew and trusted me because of how thorough, helpful, and cooperative I was with him concerning an important case nearly five years before, when I was only 21.

There are skeptics out there who have recently discovered this event and seem to want to twist and distort every fact of the 50 year old Socorro case. Some of them even claim that I manufactured being with Hynek on April 29 and my involvement with this case. Above (top) I present the official USAF photo taken by Dr. Hynek using a Polaroid camera.

O.K., it was 1964. Elvis Presley was ‘King”, I was age 26, and someone has described me, therein, as sporting an Elvis-like shock of hair, but I swear, folks, that those are NOT “Blue Suede Shoes” I’m wearing.

No, those were just tan buckskins, walking all over where some people think two diminutive aliens might have trod about 4.5 days earlier. The three of us are standing on the south side of the southwest landing gear imprint. Zamora is off-duty, so he is not in police uniform.

Shortly after that photo was taken Hynek announced that he wanted to look for any landing traces, including burned paper. Then, suddenly he looked a bit flustered declaring that he had forgotten to bring any containers for samples. Well, he had done one thing right in inviting me to join them at the site because I had brought along a box of sixty brand new clear plastic containers with soft plastic lids you could write on them with a ballpoint pen.

We searched for samples side-by-side. When Hynek came up with something of interest I would place it in a plastic container for him and write his coded designation on the lid. Later, he would write a longer description on a paper pad.

Nearly fifty years later at the National Archives storage center, movie producer James Fox and I located, handled, and photographed the very burned-paper specimens I had so long ago helped Hynek collect for Project Blue Book. Seeing the Socorro trace evidence was like seeing long lost friends! They looked just as they did the day we found them. James Fox and I had received exceptional clearance to handle and photograph Blue Book originals, instead of copies. That exception took nearly an hour to obtain. It was granted to us because we told them I was in the photo with Zamora and Chavez. Other archive users are given only photos and xerographic copies to examine or copy.

Most specimens collected were long-weathered tears off the sides of corrugated boxes, evidently blown over there from the nearby trash facility. All papers found had clearly laid in the ravine bottom weathering rain-after-rain. The material was well-altered by both water, temperature extremes, and sunlight.

I absolutely do NOT allege that what you see below, in Socorro sample PB4, is evidence of some advanced propulsion technology. It’s true that the burns might seem a little odd, perhaps as though having been incurred mostly from a direction above. There are some intriguing edge scorches without black charring on those particular edges. I’m not saying that there might NOT be some effect of the Socorro object’s landing and take-off propulsive down-flow on the paper shown, but just recommend caution against over-interpretation of what one sees.

Something possibly more intriguing is at the left side. There’s a small brown scorch with oddly ‘concentric’ patterns of black centered around it. Notice how just the edge of the very old fold (shown oriented as found in the ravine bottom) is scorched but not very blackened.

Paper found at Socorro site

Virtually all paper in the landing area had already been collected days before except for one small piece of paper which I found within the landing-gear quadrangle. Chavez and Zamora suggested we look to the west-southwest of the landing gear quadrangle, because in that direction one could see some grass and old ravine-bottom-weathered papers which seemed as though they might have been recently scorched and even burned from above.

Although Hynek and I searched other areas outside of the area mentioned above, we found no other burned paper and saw no other seemingly burned grass.

Included here is a map of my own (not Hynek’s, whose finds were very near mine) paper-find sites, drawn onto a later illustration (from my Socorro book), but based on my careful notes made when collected. Note the arrow on the upper right indicating approximate direction of approach. This was based on the account of Colorado tourists who stopped at Whiting Brothers service station operated by Opal Grinder. They reported seeing something before Zamora’s sighting became known. The yellow area in my find-map is where I found the burned paper shown in the accompanying image.

Find-Map image is copyright 2009 (C) Ray Stanford:

Burn't Paper Map, Socorro UFO Case 1964

There has been a lot of dis-information released to the public by unscientific people seem more interested in name-recognition and internet attention than in trying to do any scientific work on the Socorro case. There have been ridiculous suggestions that the paper Hynek collected might have been left over from pyrotechnics (fireworks) allegedly used to convince Zamora that he was seeing an exotic vehicle.

Hynek pointed out years ago that nothing he found at the site in any way whatsoever resembled casing material of pyrotechnics. He very accurately pointed out that most of the burned paper was from long-weathered paper sides of corrugated boxes, exactly as is the case with my Socorro paper specimen PB4 shown here.

I personally handled every piece of paper Hynek collected (for the reasons explained above) and having what was characterized by researchers for a major corporation as “maybe the world’s most sensitive sense of smell” — explanation available on request 😉 — I swear on my life that nothing that either Hynek or I collected at the Socorro site had even the slightest trace of ’fireworks’ smell. Also, there was no smell of any substances such as gasoline or kerosene. Tests on samples done for the Air Force Foreign Technology Division detected zero chemical traces of fireworks or hydrocarbon (as from gasoline or kerosene) fuel.

All samples we collected showed undeniable signs of having long been weathering in the ravine.

But, in contrast, most of the papers had burn areas which looked very fresh, with darkened surfaces NOT sprinkled by tiny silt particles from ravine wash or even rain splatter. If not fresh, silting would have been in evidence from splatter during even light rains and, of course, as a result of any ravine flooding by desert rain storms.

Hopefully, this information will end the fantasies and unbridled self-serving suggestive propaganda that Hynek might have found paper residues of fireworks.

It should also be noted that the paper’s with burns were found by us exclusively in that limited cone-shaped cross-section of hypothesized landing-engine effect located west-southwest of the landing near the quadrangle. That happens to be the direction in which the bright down-flow from the landing thruster theoretically would have been directed to counter its west-southwesterly approach. The Colorado tourists described how they saw the object cross very low over their old green Cadillac and head to the area toward which they observed Zamora’s police cruiser at the time of the event.

My thanks to Ben Moss, Tony Angiola for this opportunity to discuss a few more facts of the Socorro case. The best Socorro evidence is yet to come.

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The Socorro UFO Case – Two More ‘Smoking Guns’

Socorro UFO- Lonnie Zamora Hitting The Dirt

Ray Stanford By Ray Stanford
The UFO Chronicles

There was absolutely nothing to keep Zamora from very clearly discerning the red ‘insignia’ because he observed it it with his glasses on and from, first, only 50 feet, and, finally, about 35 feet. I know the distances accurately because I paced the distances off at Hynek’s request, when Zamora showed Hynek and me his closest positions.

     Before I get into the two additional ‘smoking guns’ confirming that the red ‘insignia’ Zamora saw was actually an inverted V with three lines across it, please allow me to address another matter on which there have been consistent lies or distortions: WHERE ZAMORA ‘HIT THE DIRT’ in a prone position. Most all accounts say that Zamora didn’t ‘hit the dirt’ until he was well on the north side of his patrol car, with the car between him and the object hovering about twenty feet above the ravine bottom. THAT IS NOT ONLY FALSE BUT ILLOGICAL.

Above is my personally water-colored (but here in B & W, except for the red ‘insignia’) version of the illustration on page 25 of the hard-cover edition of my Socorro book, with the CORRECT version of the red ‘insignia’ replacing the fake version Captain Richard T. Holder convinced Zamora to describe.

THAT is where Zamora ‘hit the dirt’ in a prone position, as he had been trained to in the Army, in case of explosion. The perspective is a little distorted, because it makes Zamora look a bit too close to his patrol car. Actually, his feet were about 15 feet from the car, AND ONLY ABOUT 35 feet from the mysterious object.

Notice that the red ‘insignia’ is rendered somewhat larger than the one shown in my book. That’s because when the original drawing was done, we were under the impression that the size Zamora described after talking with Captain holder was correct, describing the ‘insignia’ as 12 to 18 inches across. THAT WAS FALSE, and conceivably had been changed to further enable recognition of ‘copycat’ hoaxes.

Zamora’s original description of the size of the red ‘insignia’ was approximately TWICE that large, at 2 to 3 feet across. Being red on a whitish-looking background and 2 to 3 feet across, it was unmistakably clear to Zamora. And let no one lie to you. ZAMORA WAS WEARING HIS GLASSES, just as shown in my illustration. They didn’t get knocked off until, when running back up the slope WHILE LOOKING BACK OVER HIS SHOULDER AT THE OBJECT WITH HIS GLASSES ON, he resultantly didn’t realize how close the car was and bumped into the back end, knocking off his glasses.

Now, let me explain how wrong and illogical the claim that Zamora ‘hit the dirt’ after running around the car and while a considerable distance north of it. As illustrated above, HE HAD ALREADY HIT THE DIRT, but then, realizing the thing was not exploding, he got up and ran to then get the patrol car between himself and the object, which by that point had cut off the noise and was not nearly so threatening. There was no reason to then reduce his view of the object by throwing himself on the ground wherein the car would be blocking any view from such a disadvantageous position.

Now, as to the two additional ‘smoking guys’ that point to the inverted V with three lines cross it, as what Zamora actually saw:

What I am about to show you will neither be found in the National Archive, nor on Project Blue Book files as now available at The Black Vault website. I suspect that Blue Book would never have knowingly let anything out contradicting the fake red ‘insignia’ as presented (albeit sometimes a bit contradictorily) with help of Army Captain Holder’s (and Zamora at Holder’s suggestion) help. It was probably also encouraged (or at least surely approved) by FBI agent Arthur Byrnes, Jr., who constantly hovered over the long nocturnal interview with Holder and Zamora, lasting until about 1:00 am.

The two hand-written documents seen below are evidently telephone notes taken at Blue Book, reporting what seems to have been a result of Hynek’s interview with New Mexico State Police Sergeant Sam Chavez earlier on the evening of Tuesday, April 28, 1964, before Zamora came off police duty and Hynek got to interview him. I had arrived in Socorro before Zamora got off duty, and while Hynek was still talking behind closed doors with Sergeant Chavez.

We have MUFON Ohio State SECTION Director Rob Mercer to thank for copies of the hand-written documents that follow. Mercer has thoroughly checked them out, verifying the background of their source, a U.S. Air force Project Blue Book officer whose name and official photo are in my possession, but who for now shall remain unnamed for protection of his privacy.

What you see below are among a large group of documents that Rob Mercer acquired from the retired Air Force officer, but because the two you see below were kept out of the Blue Book records at the National Archive and reveal what the first responder to the Socorro site after Zamora’s police call WAS TOLD BY ZAMORA ABOUT THE RED ‘INSIGNIA’, they are of cardinal importance. They confirm the subsequent cover-up of how the red ‘insignia’ really looked, and they give us a highly credible description. (It’s a description confirmed by every lawman in Socorro to whom I spoke. See Appendix A, An Obfuscated Red ‘Insignia’?, pages 206-211 in the hard cover edition of my Socorro book.)

The description was provided by Sergeant Sam Chavez based on what Zamora told him immediately after his arrival at the site. The description was provided to Hynek only four days later, matching precisely what Socorro policemen told me on that same day and the next one.

Therefore, I must point out that Chavez’s description, as provided us in these hitherto undisclosed blue book documents, is quite evidently ACCURATE, unlike the drawing in the notoriously forgetful Hynek’s September 7, 1964 letter to Project Blue Book, where he seems a bit unsure just how to place the three lines relative to the inverted V, which Chavez has described to him over four months earlier, on the evening of April 28.

The first image you see below contains the initial Blue Book telephone notes, written rapidly and in the cursive, while the second image below appears to be a follow-up version of the phone notes, unquestionably written by the same Blue Book staffer, but this time it is very neat and in mostly block-letter hand printing. Those typed notes in the black areas are by me.

Image 1:

Initial Blue Book Telephone Notes Re Socorro - Red Marking

Notice that word “first” modifying the word sighting, in the second line. Note that it is REMOVED in the second, more neatly written version below, seemingly because it referred to the La Madera, N.M., landed-object claim (not credible, in my opinion), and absolutely NOT to a second Socorro sighting. The writer wisely wanted to make sure things would not be misinterpreted.

Image 2: The red type is by me.

Initial Blue Book Telephone Notes Re Socorro - Red Marking (2)

The note at the bottom is about Hynek’s call on his way home to Chicago, following our 1;00 pm press conference in Socorro’s El Rio Motel, as described in detail in my Socorro book, pages 64 – 72. (Hynek told me after reading that in the book that I had given him what he had coming to him for his intellectually dishonest antics at the press conference.) Hynek’s call was at 2305 hours (11:05 pm), so although the call was before midnight on the 28th, the note was not written until the next day, April 29, 1964.

When you combine those two notes providing Sergeant Chavez’ account of Zamora’s description of the red ‘insignia’, with the statement from Richard T. Holder, Jr (Captain Holder’s eldest son) about the cover-up, and with Hynek’s September 7, 1964 letter, it strongly suggests (since the two above notes were kept out of Blue Book files) that the USAF was involved in the red ‘insignia’ cover-up instituted by a U.S. Army White Sands up-range officer.

But if you are one of those skeptics who still accuse me of making up the red ‘insignia’ cover-up story, and still don’t accept what I was to only person to expose about the Socorro case, despite evidence strong enough to stand up in court, then I suggest you go back to your Ouija Board class of revelations, have a cup of tea, and seek more tea-leaf-reading confirmation of your messages from the Ouija Board.

Fortunately, most researchers prefer a higher class of evidence.

There is more interesting and exciting Socorro evidence waiting in the wings. I hope to be able to share more of it soon.

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