Kenmare ND - Upside Down Under

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Upside Down Under

By Marvin Baker, a new weekly column in The Kenmare News


A long-lasting mystery...

Posted 7/24/18 (Tue)

No matter how many times people try to deny it, no matter how many organizations pass it off as a hoax and even though the U.S. military can’t confirm or deny it exists, the UFO phenomenon continues to surface.

In fact, the most recent report of a UFO in North Dakota was on June 15 when two oval-shaped crafts were spotted over the Missouri River near Bismarck. The sighting lasted about 5 seconds.

On Feb. 15, a large, green sphere appeared in Grand Forks, hovered, banked downward, then disappeared. That sighting also lasted 5 seconds.

There were three sightings in December 2017; Litchville, Grand Forks and Washburn.

On Dec. 29, someone near Litchville, in Barnes County, watched a fireball for almost 3 minutes. As it disappeared into space, it left a black contrail.

On Dec. 10 someone in the Grand Forks area noticed strange animal behavior before the appearance of unexplained lights and someone in Washburn observed three star-sized orbs orbiting the constellation Ursa Major.

The list of North Dakota sightings goes into the hundreds, at least for the National UFO Reporting Center in Seattle.

The Air Force has lists of additional sightings, as do private researchers who believe their information is confidential.

Then, of course, there are the sightings that have gone on unreported. It’s anybody’s guess what that might total up to be.

Most of us set the baseline of UFO sightings in June 1947 near Roswell, N.M., where a UFO allegedly crashed.

Interestingly enough, reported sightings go back to 1909 nationwide and 1934 in North Dakota.

On Sept. 15, 1934, two brothers from Valley City saw three black disks streak overhead. One of them had as many as 500 lights.

Since that time, UFOs have been spotted and reported with little done about them.

Mildred Schmitz, who lives in Minot now and is 98 years old, saw a UFO in 1941 in the Kenaston area of Ward County. Schmitz, whose maiden name was McNeil, didn’t report it until recently when she told a friend about it.

Most of the UFO sightings in this state occurred in the mid 1960s and it is theorized the sightings spiked primarily because of the nuclear threat and two Air Force bases in the state that had nuclear weapons.

But that doesn’t explain 1941, or even more obscure, 1934.

Why do these objects keep popping up in every corner of the state? Is it possible that people across North Dakota have been imagining things for more than 80 years? Or, is there something to this that could be the reason why so many sightings continue to occur?

Whatever you think, there’s endless documentation, not just here, but all over the world. Some of these cases have become folklore such as the four bodies that supposedly were scattered across the New Mexico desert in June 1947. There’s also the report of three “alien bodies” that were discovered following a UFO crash near Cape Girardeau, Mo. in 1941,

It’s hard to deny that one when a well known and well respected priest was asked to go with fire and law enforcement to provide last rites to “plane” crash victims. When the priest arrived, he quickly realized they weren’t plane crash victims.

In his journal, the vicar noted small, hairless bodies with very small ears and long legs and arms. He also described the craft, which is typical of people who report UFOs. The only difference is this  sighting occurred six years before Roswell and 18 years before UFO sightings ramped up in the United States.

We’ve all heard the explanations of denial; swamp gas, reflections, deliberate pranks and some even claim that UFOs are Russians who have surveillance on us.

It’s an interesting item of human psychology. We’ll go to great lengths to find reasons why UFOs don’t exist, yet few people will admit they’ve seen one or believe that they do exist.

So, is it fear that’s driving this train? Perhaps, but it could also be that it’s just what people believe.

A recent development that has apparently changed a lot of minds, is the use of drones.

These things fly around in the sky and can be erratic if the “pilot” controls it that way. It can have lights and cameras and even communication devices.

In addition, we’re on the verge of sending people to Mars, so UFOs could certainly be possible.

The Air Force thought so, the Pentagon now thinks so and Mildred Schmitz insists upon it.