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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2012 > Mar > Mar 31

Re: Exeter Case 'Solved'

From: Peter Davenport <director.nul>
Date: Fri, 30 Mar 2012 14:58:54 -0700
Archived: Sat, 31 Mar 2012 08:20:13 -0400
Subject: Re: Exeter Case 'Solved'

>From: Martin Shough <parcellular.nul>
>To: <post.nul>
>Date: Mon, 26 Mar 2012 11:37:30 +0100
>Subject: Re: Exeter Case 'Solved'

>>From: Don Ledger <dledger.nul>
>>To: <post.nul>
>>Date: Sun, 25 Mar 2012 13:43:13 -0300
>>Subject: Exeter Case 'Solved'

>>Apparently those super-sleuths James McGaha and Joe Knickell
>>from the Skeptical Enquirer have solved the Exeter case.

>>Apparently the 60 to 100 foot wide, blood-red object that
>>eighteen-year-old Norman Muscarello and Police Officer Eugene
>>Bertrand saw arising from the trees a few hundred feet away can
>>be easily explained by the director lights on a refuelling
>>tanker at twenty thousand feet.


>>Source: CSICOP.Org


>>November/December 2011

>>Special Report
>>James McGaha and Joe Nickell
>>Volume 35.6, November/December 2011

Martin, et al,

I vaguely remember hearing about the McGaha/Nickell article,
when it was first published, but today was the first time I took
the time to read it. Iím sorry I wasted the time necessary to do

The contents of the article make it, in my opinion, little more
than a classic disinformation piece, hardly worth the time to
read it, and certainly not worth the time to write a long,
detailed analysis of the many flaws, oversights, and omissions
the article exhibits. The notion that the lights seen by the
three witnesses were some type of "marker lights" on a piston-
driven military transport aircraft is the pinnacle of
absurdity!! It seems clear from the article that neither of the
two writers ever interviewed any of the witnesses to the event,
or those who were involved in its investigation. McGaha may have
been too young, at the time; Nickell may already have left for
Canada, during his draft-dodging stint up north, at the time the
incident occurred.

During the first week of September 1965, I conducted personal
interviews of Officers Bertrand, Hunt, and Toland. In addition,
I interviewed Norman Muscarello, whom I never met, and who was
on the verge of entering the U. S. Navy under a delayed-
enlistment program. I recall that he was within days of
reporting for service, and we were unable to schedule a
rendezvous.. All of the above facts can be confirmed by reading
my two articles, which were published in The Derry News, Derry,
NH, on September 13 and September 16, 1965.

On Friday, September 10, 1965, I interviewed Lt. Alan B. Brandt
at Pease AFB, who had conducted the investigation of the
incident on behalf of the U. S. Air Force. Lt. Brandt would not
say what he thought was the cause of the incident, but he did
admit to me that he found the case to be intriguing, and that it
caused him to abandon his native skepticism about the UFO
phenomenon. ((I do not recall whether Lt. Brandt was a 2nd or
1st Lieutenant, although I believe he was a 1st Lieutenant. At
that time, and at age 17, I believe I was not familiar with the
distinction between rank insignia for a 1st and 2nd

Hence, the contents of my September 1965 articles, as well as
the contents of my article for the Encyclopedia Of
Extraterrestrial Encounters, edited by Ronald D. Story, are
based primarily on personal interviews with the principal
witnesses and participants in the case.

There are many flaws and oversights in the McGaha/Nickell
article, but let me address a few, which I hope will lay the
issue to rest, once and for all:

"When Muscarello burst into the office of the Exeter Police
Department, Desk Officer Reginald Toland was concerned for
Muscarelloís welfare, given Muscarelloís disheveled appearance.
Muscarello had mud-stained clothing, and I believe that he
appeared to have mild laceration wounds to his arms, which may
have been bleeding. It was, in part, predicated on Muscarelloís
appearance that caused Officer Toland to radio to the
departmentís two patrol cars, at the time being driven by
Officers Hunt and Bertrand, that there was an individual in the
Exeter Police Station, who was claiming to have been followed,
and approached, by a flying saucer."

The mud and lacerations were the result of Muscarelloís having
dived under a bush alongside the road he was walking on, in
attempt to get away from, and conceal himself from, the object.
Muscarello reported to me that when he hid under the bush, the
object slowly moved above him, it seemed to tip forward, and it
suddenly illuminated him brightly with what he said was the
brightest light he had ever seen. He stated that it "seemed to
hit its high beams." Hardly the result of "marker lights" on a
transport aircraft at altitude!

"Officers Bertrand and Hunt accompanied Muscarello into a
triangular-shaped field, over which Muscarello had last seen the
mysterious, disc-shaped object. As they were walking back to the
two police cruisers, the three of them suddenly were illuminated
from behind. They quickly whirled around to face the source of
the light, and witnessed a craft that apparently had risen from
behind a knoll, or from behind a row of trees, in the distant
corner of the field. Officer Bertrand reported to me that during
the first few moments that they were being illuminated from
behind, he noticed that the shadows that were being cast ahead
of the three witnesses were visibly getting shorter, so he knew
that the object behind them was either rising, and/or getting
closer to them. It was at that moment of panic that he whirled
around to face the source of the light, during which time he
moved to un-holster his sidearm. Seeing Bertrand act to draw his
sidearm, Officer Hunt cautioned Bertrand not to brandish his
weapon at the object, a recommendation that Bertrand consented
to, and he returned the sidearm to its holster."

NOTE: One contributor to the list has suggested that Bertrand
had served in the U. S. Air Force, but my recollection of
Bertrandís military service record is different. During my
interview of Bertrand, he informed me that he had served with
the U. S. Marines, and that he had served in Korea during the
Korean conflict. Had he said that he had served in the U. S. Air
Force, I believe I would have made a clear mental note of that
fact, given that at ages 14 and 15 years (1962-63), I had lived
with a U. S. Air Force family in Ethiopia.

The three of the witnesses then proceeded to the two cruisers,
where they stood for an estimated 8-10 minutes, while watching
the object dart around the adjacent field, and over nearby

"During my interview of Bertrand, he commented that the object
occasionally moved so rapidly and abruptly that the human eye
could not track it. It would drift slowly and silently for a
short period of time, and then suddenly "jump" across the field
and appear almost spontaneously in another location. Obviously,
a KC-97 is not capable of such movement.

The object hovered over a one of the houses nearby, exhibiting a
peculiar pattern to its flashing lights. Officer Bertrand
described to me in detail how four of the five lights on the
near edge of the craft would be illuminated, while only one of
the lights would be extinguished, and that the extinguished
light would cycle back and forth along the near edge of the

"Hunt, Bertrand, and Muscarello were aware of nearby horses
making a ruckus, and those horses, I was informed by Peter
Geremia, ultimately broke through the corral fence. I did not
know that the horses had escaped their corral, at the time I
interviewed the witnesses, and I did not interview the owners of
the animals, as I recall. I seem to recall that they were not at
home when I knocked on their door. I was never able to reach
them for an interview, is my recollection."

I could cite a number of other significant 'diversions' from
known fact about this case, which appear in the article by
McGaha and Nickell, but I believe the points I have made above
should be sufficient to illustrate just how misdirected their
article is. It is clear that they did not conduct any primary
investigation of the incident, and that their representations in
the article are little more than conjecture. Their approach to
the case is to create a seemingly plausible scenario, which
ignores the bulk of the facts that are known about the incident.
God only knows what their motivation may be, but it is difficult
for me to imagine that two people would write such a foolish
piece, if there were not some concealed agenda to their actions.


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