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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2007 > Sep > Sep 16

Butler Group Is Skeptical Of Disbelief

From: UFO UpDates - Toronto <ufoupdates.nul>
Date: Sun, 16 Sep 2007 10:11:56 -0400
Archived: Sun, 16 Sep 2007 10:11:56 -0400
Subject: Butler Group Is Skeptical Of Disbelief 

Source: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette - Pennsylvania, USA


Sunday, September 16, 2007

The Truth Is Out There
Butler group is skeptical of disbelief in paranormal events

By Len Barcousky
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Brian Seech has never glimpsed a Bigfoot, but he hasn't given up
hope. Sightings of a Sasquatch -- an 8- to 10-foot-tall hairy,
half ape-half human creature -- are frequent in Western
Pennsylvania and Ohio, he said.

His wife, Terrie, has been more fortunate with her passion,
parapsychology with a special interest in ghosts. She reported
personal contact with a poltergeist, or mischievous spirit, when
she was an adolescent and, more recently, with the spectral form
of her husband's late aunt.

"I was sitting up in bed when she passed across the hallway,"
Mrs. Seech recalled. The nearly transparent apparition was clad
in a blue-white nightgown. "That is the kind she wore," her
husband said of his aunt.

Mr. and Mrs. Seech, of Aliquippa, were among the 15 people who
gathered recently in the rear dining room at King's Family
Restaurant in Butler Township. The occasion was the monthly
meeting of the Butler Organization for Research of the

Over the course of the next few hours, people described their
encounters with spirits, silent spacecraft and, they suspect,
extraterrestrials. They talked about their experiences in the
same calm, matter-of-fact voices they used for ordering supper
or dessert from the restaurant menu.

Their organization, known as BORU, is more than 20 years old,
according to director Dan Hageman. Membership is about 40.
Attendance at meetings waxes and wanes, with anywhere from a
half dozen to 35 people showing up. Sessions are open to the
public. The group has no membership dues.

BORU is just one of many similar groups in southwestern
Pennsylvania devoted to collecting information and sharing
experiences linked to the very broad term "paranormal."

Many people interested in topics like unidentified flying
objects and alien encounters are torn between two impulses, said
Mr. Hageman, a salesman who lives in Butler.

On the one hand, they believe it is important to publicize
information on the many UFO encounters that they say have been
reported in and around Butler County. "But we don't want to be
labeled as kooks, nuts and idiots," he said.

Science and traditional religion sometime have to catch up to
what ordinary people already know or have long suspected,
members said.

"Cryptozoology" is the name for the effort to find and classify
animals known from folklore or legend but not categorized by
biologists. Scotland's Loch Ness monster, which has been talked
about for centuries but never captured, may be the best known
example of what they call a "cryptid."

The world's oceans and jungles periodically turn up previously
unknown or extinct creatures, Mr. Seech said. A living
coelacanth, a type of early fish previously seen only as a 65-
million-year-old fossil, was pulled from the ocean off the coast
of South Africa. In 1993, a new horned mammal called a saola was
identified in Vietnam.

BORU meetings are informal, often with no fixed agenda. At some
meetings, the group has a guest speaker, but members and
visitors more often talk about their interests and experiences.

While they are serious about their subject, members don't take
themselves too seriously. Their Web site, www.boru-ufo.com,
features eerie music and cartoon images of waving aliens and

While the site draws visitors and e-mails from around the world,
Mr. Hageman and other members are most interested in local

One early report dates to April 23, 1897 -- an era before
dirigibles or airplanes -- when an "airship" was sighted in
Lawrence and Butler counties.

The most recent unexplained sighting came Aug. 18. Mr. Hageman
read an e-mail from two people who had been sitting on their
porch near Portman Road in Summit, Butler County. They described
a single bright light, moving quickly, silently and erratically
from north to south, that suddenly divided into two circular

One of the more controversial claims of groups like BORU is that
the U.S. government suppresses evidence of paranormal phenomena,
especially anything related to possible UFO visits and human-
alien contacts.

The best-known claim of a coverup centered around the reported
crash of a spaceship near Roswell, N.M., in 1947 and what has
been described as secret research -- including alien autopsies -
- in Area 51, the name given to part of a Defense Department
testing and training range in southwestern Nevada.

Several late-night national radio programs, TV series such as
"The X-Files" and movies such as "Men in Black" have focused,
either seriously or humorously, on coverup claims.

While proof of alien life could raise major religious questions,
there are no scientific hurdles to the idea of life existing on
other worlds. So why would all of the world's major leaders, and
especially the U.S. government, expend so much effort to
discount reports of UFOs?

"They have been lying about it so long that they can't admit the
truth at this point," Mr. Hageman said.

"The government thinks most people couldn't accept the reality,"
suggested Joe Rice, of Butler.

"Remember what happened after 'The War of the Worlds' radio
broadcast [in 1938]?" asked Michelle George, of East Brady,
codirector of the group. "A lot of people got very upset."

Public officials fear that entire societies could become
unhinged if the existence of aliens were confirmed. "Their
technology is clearly so superior," Ms. George said. "It would
mean our government can't protect us."

Most people go through life without ever seeing an apparition, a
UFO or a Yeti -- another name for a Bigfoot. How is it that a
small group often has had multiple experiences with the

If you are going to spot an alien spacecraft, you have to be
scanning the skies. "We're always looking up," Ms. George said.

Mr. Hageman had an alternate explanation. Sensitivity to the
paranormal may run in families, he said. He and his mother both
have had similar experiences that he believes are best
understood as alien encounters.

He also had a suggestion for people interested in improving
their chances of seeing something inexplicable.

An amateur astronomer named Ted Anderson has spotted what he
calls the "UFO Universe Freeway Entrance" near the constellation
Ursa Major, which contains the Big Dipper.

Over the past 30 years, the Washington state resident claims to
have seen hundreds of space ships entering and exiting
hyperspace via a "stargate" between the stars Arcturus and
Muphrid in Bootes, a constellation next to Ursa Major.

"Keep your eye on the handle of the Big Dipper," Mr. Hageman


Len Barcousky can be reached at

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