Forty years ago, an Army helicopter with a crew of four flew over Mansfield, Ohio.
According to the official report signed and submitted by the crew:
“It is 11:00 p.m. when we had a near mid-air collision with an unidentified flying object.”
The full explanation for this horrifying close encounter with a UFO has never been shown. To this day, this incident remains one of the most credible and horrifying in history on the subject.
At first, helicopter commander Maj. Larry Coyne and his crew thought the light on the horizon was from a radio tower beacon.
In 1975, Coyne told a reporter:
“We were flying at about 2,500 feet when a helicopter crew member spotted a red light on the eastern horizon. He then informed me that the light was moving against the helicopter, and that it was coming towards us for a collision.
I looked to my right and noticed the object getting bigger and the light getting brighter. I began to descend the helicopter towards the ground to get out of the way of the collision. We were going down, and this object was like a rocket. It started moving at a perpendicular angle to hit us.
It looked like we were going to collide… We braced ourselves for impact and then I heard the crewmen in the back saying, “Look up!”. I noticed this object stopped right in front of us. It stopped and started hovering, right over the helicopter!”
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As the unknown object began to hover in the air above the helicopter, Coyne and his crew noticed a light coming from its rear end. This light came out at a 90 degree angle and entered their cabin.
“It was a bright green light. And all the red night lights we use for night navigation were “dissolved” into this green light. The whole cabin turned green. “Hit” us all directly in the face…
We knew we had encountered something extraordinary.
We assumed it was a high-performance fighter, but when it stopped right in front of us, that’s when all four of us realized it wasn’t a high-performance aircraft. The UFO was shaped like a cigar. It had no wings, no vertical or horizontal stabilizer, was approximately 60 feet long and 15-20 feet high.”
What happens next is like something out of science fiction.
“We were at 1,700 feet. Then this UFO started slowly moving west of us. By this time I was worried we were going to hit the ground and looked at my altimeter. Our helicopter was at 3,500 feet, climbing 1,000 feet per minute, with no control changes. We went from 1,700 feet to 3,500 feet in a matter of seconds and we never knew how…!”
The helicopter reached 3,800 feet, and the four men felt shocks “like turbulence.” Suddenly they regained control of the helicopter and returned to 2,500 feet, proceeding to Cleveland.
The Major continues his story:
“As for the UFO itself, there is no doubt in our minds what it looked like. An aerial object that can travel at the awesome speed of over 1000 knots and then stop in less than a second.
Maintains height, can change height, climb and descend. I think if he wanted to confront us he could have. You can’t get out of it – you don’t have that much time to react!”
Evidence of this incident is the words of eyewitnesses from the crew who participated in the meeting with the UFO. The military did not stop Coyne and the others from speaking about their experiences. In fact, Coyne was allowed to report the UFO incident to the United Nations in 1978.
This 1973 UFO incident, while certainly dramatic and terrifying for the helicopter crew, is not the only time conventional aircraft have encountered unknown objects.
In 1999, Richard Haines, a retired senior scientist at NASA’s Science Center in California, established the National Aviation Reporting Center on Anomalous Phenomena (NARCAP).
In it, pilots and air traffic controllers are given a confidential place to report their own unusual sightings of what Haynes calls “unidentified aerial phenomena” (UAP).
Haynes told The Huffington Post:
“We have two goals: to make flying safer with regard to unidentified and poorly understood phenomena in the atmosphere.”
And the second goal is to collect, analyze and then report high-quality data from the aerospace world about the phenomena to help us understand them better.”
According to Haynes, since the establishment of the National Aviation Anomalous Reporting Center, it has received an average of 6 to 12 reports daily. He absolutely believes that there are real dangers and safety issues that arise between pilots and some unidentified aerial phenomena.
“Based on an analysis of past cases, I believe there is potential for a very serious event.” We’ve reviewed many in-flight encounters where several things can happen.
One of them is an electromagnetic effect in the immediate vicinity of the phenomenon, in which the instruments of the cockpit are affected. It could be from a magnetic field, radio interference, or even an inertial effect, and that’s dangerous. Pilots don’t want to fly airplanes where they can’t trust their equipment.”
Another problem area Haynes and his colleagues found was similar to the one Coyne and his helicopter crew experienced in 1973.
“These are cases where an unidentified aerial phenomenon is close to the aircraft, perhaps ahead of the aircraft, and the pilot makes a quick emergency ‘dive’ to avoid a collision. This is not very common, but should be reported. It has happened in the past and it is still happening.
I’m impressed with Coyne’s helicopter incident.
This qualifies as a genuine encounter with an unidentified aerial phenomenon. The numerous witness reports are very important and should attract the attention of aviation officials.
In the case of Coyne, its color, speed, and apparent shape are all important physical characteristics that can be linked to other pilot observations.
I think the Coyne Affair ranks very, very high in credibility. One of the reasons is Coyne’s reputation as a good and brave pilot.
The fact that he was willing to come up with this very strange story and stand behind it says an awful lot. He would encourage other pilots to do the same.
If everyone keeps quiet, we’ll never get to the bottom of this.”