(Salem, Oregon) — Our UFO sighting was in 1988, but it was years before we told anybody. Amongst ourselves it was rarely mentioned, as if we didn’t want to believe it. Being practical Oregonians, our minds reeled at the possibilities that were unleashed by the occurrence.
Suddenly we had become players in one of the stories that we could only read about before. I know now what others must have gone through when they saw a UFO at close range, the incredulity that other people expressed when we told them. It became a life-changing experience. The universe seems a different place now, less a barren vacuum of space.
Our sighting wasn’t necessarily extraterrestrial, but it was an extremely advanced technology. What that really means is open to conjecture. Most radical departures from conventional wisdom have had to overcome the inertia of the scientific community.
One day we will reach out for the stars, but it is folly to think we will be the first to have done so. I have formed this opinion only since that night in 1988. I was formerly a person who looked at the sky expecting only the usual clutter of planes, stars, and the occasional blinking satellite.
Our encounter was on a crisp fall night like any other, with errands to be completed. The sky was clear and full of stars. My wife and I were returning from the grocery store, driving northward along Fischer Road in Salem, Oregon. It is a residential thoroughfare that parallels Interstate 5. Out of the corner of my eye I saw something hovering over the freeway. The unnatural stillness and lack of visible support for the object had caught my eye.
At first I thought it was a traffic helicopter, which by itself would have been unusual in this area. As I looked closer at the object, the uniqueness of it compelled me to pull the car over to the side of the road and stop. I got out and listened hard for the sound of rotor noise, but there was none.
The fact that it was only about 200 feet away made this highly unusual. The craft had lights about its perimeter, but the exact outline of the body was strangely indistinct, like it had a low profile when viewed from the side. In an attempt to explain the phenomenon, I initially dismissed it as one of those Harrier jets that can vent the exhaust downward for landing. However, the quietness of the craft and the fact it was over the freeway made this impossible. As human beings symbolic logic is our forte.
It is one of the things that distinguish us from lower primates and other animals. But there was nothing in my experience with which I could represent the UFO in my mind, so I came up with the best that I could, a rather poor representation of what I was actually seeing.
Later this would become more pronounced, a bothersome feeling of something totally alien in my familiar world. My wife was also observing the strange craft. Exchanging glances with her, I got back in the car and we drove on to Silverton Road, turning left and passing under the freeway and several blocks westward to our apartment.
As we turned into the parking lot, we both viewed a sight that is still fixed in my mind like a photograph. There was the hovering craft directly over the parking lot. It had followed us over from the freeway. I had to drive toward it as I pulled into our parking spot. We watched in amazement for a few moments and then decided to get out.
There were no bright lights shining downward, and nobody else was outside at the apartment complex at this hour to view it besides my wife and I.
There was just it and the two of us, as if we had been selected out of a nighttime crowd that was too busy to look upward. One of my impressions at the time was how unusually easy it was for something so remarkable to be otherwise unobserved in the dark sky.
It appeared that the UFO inhabitants had seen us watching them, and they were now looking at us out of curiosity or to see if we represented some kind of threat. At this point the craft was about 70 feet overhead.
I could see clearly it was perhaps 30 feet across, with a triangular shape that was outlined with small round lights. There was no significant sound coming from it, only a faint humming that was barely noticeable.
The way it hovered absolutely motionless made it all the more fantastic. The craft quietly defied all rational attempts to explain it. It was real, a dark gray triangle floating in a sea of stars. We stared at it for what seemed like thirty seconds. By now tension had built to an alarming degree, so we hastened inside our apartment and walked directly across to the patio door to look out.
The craft was slowly moving southward, building speed with deliberate precision. Its ponderous mass floated like it was a feather, disappearing in the night sky. Since we had said little during the event, I asked what my wife had seen as verification. She mirrored my observations. Looking at the clock, we were relieved to see no time was missing.
I feel privileged to have viewed such an amazing phenomenon. We shall never forget it.
Was it a secret military prototype, the implementation of Nikola Tesla’s later theories of gravity repulsion, spawned from his confiscated notes? Perhaps. But at this late date nothing resembling it has surfaced in the news. Or was it something from beyond our solar system, cloaked in darkness and the ignorance of our more primitive world?