By Dr. Michael D. Swords, 26 April 2012
(The Big Study)
Quote from the article:
“In part two of this legendary saga, I’m going to try to sketch out how CUFOS and I got involved with the case. That involvement ultimately led to the publication of our findings in the article in the International UFO Reporter above. Those findings encompassed only a small, albeit vital, portion of the case, as other investigators allegedly were getting the mass of the on-the-ground fieldwork data. As said in part one, it turns out that those ‘other’ researchers were either NOT getting the fieldwork data or that data was never utilized and promulgated to the rest of us. We didn’t know that at the time, of course.
CUFOS got word of this explosion of UFOs over Western Michigan at about the same time that everyone else did, but CUFOS was by that time in its history no longer an organization which did onsite fieldwork except in very special circumstances. Still, CUFOS Director, Mark Rodeghier, decided that this one sounded like we should at least we should dip our toe in the water. He knew that I was not a field researcher, but that I had a friend, an old NICAP member, who used to do that. So that’s who he called. My friend began looking into this.
It was instantly obvious that a chaotic circus had immediately commenced. Witnesses, other than the Gravesfamily, were being assaulted in paparazzi fashion and being turned off everywhere. The 911 operator told my friend that he knew of a few witnesses who had seen quite a bit, but who had told him that under no circumstances was he to let out their names. One guy was an ex-USAF colonel who lived south along the coast and who would have been a superior addition to the story. But no way.
The NOAA station manager had told everyone flat that there would be no interviewing any station personnel especially the night operator who took the 911 call. They wanted none of the grief. My friend made contact not only with them [briefly] but went on to talk with NOAA HQ in Washington DC. He made a good impression. Ultimately they called him back and said that he could have the only interview with the staff, BUT he would have to bring that WMU science professor with him when he came [he’d played my ‘PhD card’ to them over the phone]. So I was stuck with a field investigation if we wanted access.”
Map of South West Michigan (michigan.org)