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Remember a few weeks ago when we mentioned the upcoming anniversary of a missile malfunction near Roy?
And how former Malmstrom Air Force Base missileer Robert Salas believes it was caused by a UFO, even though he didn’t actually see the strange object?
Well, it turns out Robert isn’t the only one with a story to tell about UFOs in these parts.
We talked with a Roy rancher and a Fairfield farmer this week about what they say were out-of-this-world experiences. And they’re both eyewitnesses.
So call today’s Mansch on Montana piece a UFO redux …
SOME 10 YEARS AGO, Curt Moseman and his family saw something right back of the house. He couldn’t explain it.
“We were a hundred feet from it,” Curt says.
He lives about a mile west of a missile silo near Roy, the same one where the malfunction happened involving Robert Salas in March 1967.
“About six miles west of Roy on the crick here is where we live,” Curt says.
It was March 7 of 2007, a dark moonless night. Curt’s 20-year-old son went out at about 10 p.m. to check on the herd of cows.
“He was watching a calf be born,” Curt says. “And he had a flashlight, turning it on and off. And all of a sudden this thing on the hill started flashing lights back at him.”
“This thing came toward him and it was a few hundred feet in the air,” Curt says. “So he came to the house scared as hell. And he was just a shakin’.”
Curt wasn’t too sympathetic at first.
“I said, ‘Oh we’ve been calving for three weeks now and you’re probably tired. Just go to bed,’” Curt told his son.
Curt’s wife got all over him for that.
“She says, ‘Get out there. There might be something there,’ I was in my underwear but I said OK. And I wish I’d of taken my camera or my (doggone) iPad. Because that thing takes pictures.”
WHAT CURT SAW was worth photographing.
“All of a sudden, this thing was 90 to 100 feet away from us and it lit up,” Curt says. “There were seven lights, all eight foot in diameter. Poof, poof, poof. … All seven lights came on. It was probably 90 feet wide, 20 feet high. It didn’t give off no light on the outside of whatever it was. All the light was inside.”
Curt and his son were stunned in the pickup. The object, he says, was not moving.
“It was sitting on the ground, 100 feet from the road,” Curt says. “All the big lights came on, all seven of them, and when they all came on, this thing started going straight up. Real slow. It went up 10 or 20 feet and went across my hayfield. We started chasing it with the pickup, but all of a sudden it took off and got ahead of us and we lost track of it.”
What was it?
“I don’t know. I have no clue,” Curt says. “If it’s the Air Force they better let us know about the technology, I can tell you that.”
CURT’S CLOSE ENCOUNTER happened twice that night. He says they went back to the original site and sat there, waiting.
“And all of a sudden, it’s above us, sitting in one spot,” he says. “And it’s watching us. For probably five minutes. Then all of a sudden the lights went out and we never saw it again.”
Curt and his boy did not see any sign of life inside the craft.
“But the weird thing is,” Curt says, “they were in the middle of my cows and I think they abducted one. Because six months later, a cow out of that herd came up (mutilated). Almost everything inside the cow was gone. I think they took one of my cows up and put something into it, and I think they come back six months later and took it. Now I’ve not told anybody that, but that’s what I think.
“No teeth marks. All the cuts were straight as hell and everything inside was gone. Weird.”
That, we think, is a little scary.
“I know,” Curt says. “It’s bothered me ever since.”
CURT, 60, SAYS HE’S not the only one with stories like this to tell.
“There’s a lot of other people around here who have seen the same thing, different lights and stuff,” he says. “One neighbor lady to the east had one land right in her corral when she was calving. I tell you what, in ’07 and into 08, ’there was a lotta (UFO) activity around here. And then nothing.”
Could it have been an Air Force craft?
“There ain’t no way,” Curt says. “This thing was so big and heavy. I don’t think it was us. I think it was something beyond (this earth). I do.”
He was asked if anyone has ever accused him of seeing things.
“Oh yeah, my buddies in Roy gave me hell for about a year,” Curt says. “Thank God I had my kid with me, or everyone would really think I’m crazy.”
He says things are good on the ranch these days.
“We’re doing fine,” Curt says. “I just wish that thing would come back so we could see it in the daylight.”
GERALD RAPP LIVES 14 miles west of Fairfield on Highway 408. Been there for years, he says. Pretty peaceful out there, too.
Except for one night about 40 years ago.
“We had quite an experience,” he says. “I think it was ’74 or ’76 and at night about a half a mile from our place we saw lights blinking and blinking.”
A wreck on the highway, that’s what Gerald though. So he and two teenaged sons, Matthew and Mason, investigated.
“Well, it was not a wreck,” Gerald says. “There were lights coming and going in the air from a field, going and lighting and coming up and hovering above the highway. And then going back.”
Small lights, he says. Flickering lights.
“We got out of the pickup and went down there about 100 yards,” Gerald says. “And here out in the field was this big, lit-up, two-story hotel type of building. Only it wasn’t a building. It was setting in the field. You couldn’t see into it, but it had lots of windows. With little flickering lights moving all around it.”
GERALD SAYS HE WASN’T certain what to make of this.
“We thought ‘what in the world? How come the Air Force isn’t out investigating this?’” he says. “And all of a sudden here comes from Great Falls, that direction, a blinking, blinking deal. I says ‘Here comes the chopper right now, boys. They’re gonna see what’s going on.’
“So the chopper gets right overhead and it was not a chopper. It was a big disc-shaped object with a dome on it and everything. And I’ll be darned but it went over and lit behind the big building.”
Of course he says it was no building, either. And the boys wanted to get out of the pickup and go touch it.
“I said no, we’re not going over there at all,” Gerald says. “We kept watching it, and pretty soon the building starts lifting up off the field and starts going away, very slowly, to the south. And all the objects that were flickering around it followed right along until it disappeared from our view toward the Rocky Mountains.”
“No dream at all,” Gerald says. “We were all wide awake watching it from my pickup.”
To be an eyewitness, it was suggested, must be a frightening experience.
“No, it wasn’t,” Gerald says. “We were exalted to see this. I said ‘Look boys, you’ll never see this again.’ This is something nobody can explain.”
Gerald tries anyhow.
“I think it was something from another place, another planet,” he says.
JUST LIKE CURT in Roy, Gerald in Fairfield has caught some teasing about the story.
“People say, oh, you’re goofy, you musta been drunk, you were seeing things …” Gerald says. “I don’t tell it to everybody. But I’ve convinced, and so is my whole family.”
Earlier that evening, Gerald’s brother to the north had visited and mentioned seeing some funny lights in the sky.
“He said it was a flying saucer,” Gerald chuckles. “He was kidding, you know.”
But Gerald is dead serious.
As we asked Curt, we wondered if what Gerald saw could possibly have been an Air Force craft of some kind.
“Absolutely not,” he says. “This thing was hotel-sized, at least a block long and two stories high, and sitting in a stubble field. I know that field well. I’ve irrigated that field. And here it was plain as day. And it rises up slowly – me and the boys all saw it. My family all believes me.
“I don’t care if anybody believes me or not, but since you wanted to know that’s my story. And I’m sticking to it.”
GERALD AND CURT, two born and raised Montana men, have a matter-of-fact way of speaking. The truth is, they say, they’re witnesses to history.
And, they add, they’re not the only ones around here.
“I know that other people have seen similar types of things,” Gerald says. “And I know and they know that these are real things. But why the government will not admit it, I don’t know and don’t care. But they won’t. And they know more than I or you know about it, for crying out loud. But they will not inform the public.”
Needless to say, since that night Gerald and his family have been watching the sky every night.
“Absolutely,” he says. “We watch. And we have not seen anything since.”
Mansch On Montana, which is dedicated to personalities and places that make living in Great Falls and the Treasure State so special, appears Mondays in the Tribune. Scott Mansch can be reached at 791-1481 or email@example.com