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sffreeways Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-20-05 09:34 AM
Original message
Have a UFO Story ? Wanna Share ?
Glomar Explorer My UFO Story

My Grandfather was an employee of Sun Ship Building and Dry Dock in Chester PA. when the Glomar was built 1969-1972. He was one of only 60 civilian employees that were given CIA clearance to work on the project. He passed away about 10 years ago at the ripe old age of 84. He loved what he did and was the hardest workingman I've ever known. He used to get up every morning of his life at 4 am and go off to work in some of the harshest weather conditions the east coast and the Delaware River can dish out.

He was born and raised on a farm in Lancaster PA and wasn't a very worldly man just an honest, serious, hard working, ship builder. My Grandfather only went as far as the 8th grade, took a job as a butcher, a bartender, and eventually got a job with Sun sweeping the shop floors. According to what I've been able to ascertain through the memories from other family members one of the supervisors at the shipyard saw Granddad doing some mathematical calculations on one of the ships hulls in dry dock on his brake and they tested him to see what he could do. It turned out that he was a math genius and they gave him a better position.

He worked his way up to inspector and eventually became foremen, which was his position I recall when he was placed on the Glomar job. I have photos of him wearing his helmet with foreman on the front and Dept. 44 on the back. I've tried to find some information on Department 44 but although there is some information on the Sun Ship Alumni web site about the different departments I can find nothing about department 44. But that is another story.

I personally remember him taking me on several trips to the shipyard with him to see the Glomar when I was 10 years old. My Mother told me how nervous he was when the CIA brought our family in for photographing and fingerprinting because we had to give them our birth certificates and she had fudged hers a bit to make it look as though she were older so she could go to the bar with her cousin Patty before she was of the legal age to do so. She also recalls my Grandfather having to sign documents swearing that he would not divulge information on the top-secret project to anyone.

Somehow my Grandfather was able to take photographs of the ship while it was being constructed. At one time I had an entire scrapbook filled with drawings, memos, and about 50 photos but just like the mysterious ship herself the scrapbook mysteriously vanished when her apartment storage space was broken into. Strangely enough it seems as though that was the only thing missing as when I asked her for it and we went to get it from the boxes of his things it had vanished. I still have 2 photos of her only because he had slipped them into another scrap book he kept of another project he was very proud to have worked on called the SS Manhattan. The Manhattan you may or may not be familiar with was an icebreaker that made a historic voyage to Alaska to search for oil. I do have the scrapbook with the drawings. diagrams, memos, photographs and articles of the Manhattan and it's very interesting voyage. But back to the Glomar.

Because I had this amazing experience when I was a kid of getting to go to the launch of the Glomar Explorer I wanted to do some research on the ship and because of the wonder of the internet was able to do a lot of fascinating reading about her. The most fascinating research by far though was when I read about the Russian Submarine that was allegedly recovered. The reason it has peaked my interest most though is a strange story I recall my Granddad telling me one night while he was reading me a bedtime story. Although I can't remember exactly how the conversation got around to it I remember as clear as day him telling me "Pal, that ship I told you Granddad built was built to go and pick a spaceship off of the ocean floor".

I remember it very clearly for a very good reason and that is that it scared me and gave me nightmares and my Mom and Granddad had a bit of an argument over it. She was very unhappy that he was telling me scary stories about space aliens before bedtime that were troubling me in my sleep. My Grandfather was a very average man and definitely not a kook. He seemed disturbed by the story he told me, he was serious and my Mom remembers it too but at the time we made nothing of it. Obviously we didn't take him seriously and I think my Mom probably figured her father had maybe one too many beers at the taproom before he had come home from work that night. In any event he was not the type to believe in little green men form Mars that's for sure.

I remember the launch, it was a sunny day and the shipyard was decorated in patriotic streamers. The families of the employees involved with the project were all there including my Great Uncle Marty who was a welder for Sun Ship and worked on the Glomar too. I seem to recall that it was Mrs. Nixon that christened her that day and I'm pretty sure I've read that somewhere since. Maybe it was in the book Project Jennifer that I read some years ago.

Anyway as I said above the launch was a pretty big deal with many government official types and military in attendance. Some strange things happened that day, my Granddad and I somehow got separated from my Mom and younger brother who went home without us and again Mom was peeved at Granddad when he brought me home for losing them in the crowd. She was worried something had happened to me and my memory gets a bit foggy here because I'm not clear on where we ended up and how we were separated but it all turned out okay and as far as I can recall it was a very exciting day.

So back to the "spaceship" aspect of my story which is really the most interesting part of it all. I never heard my Grandfather talk about UFOs before or since he told me about the Glomars real purpose so he wasn't a UFO buff or anything of that nature. In fact he really never spoke of the Glomar after that. When I started doing the research on her I was shocked, really floored when I came across a story on the net about something called "Project Fallen Rainbow" in fact I had forgotten completely about the "spaceship" tale until then.

I was much more interested in the "Project Jennifer" story and the details of that. As you may or may not know the CIA asked Mr. Hughes to finance the building of the Glomar Explorer and the original purpose was supposed to be, or the public was supposed to believe it was to explore the depths of the ocean floor for magnesium nodules. According to what I've read they needed this cover story in case anyone became suspicious of the mysterious ship being built for $600 million dollars (that is what I recall my Grandfather saying the ship cost to construct but Ive read it may have been as much as a billion) by the famous Howard Hughes.

At the time nobody was aware that the CIA was involved but of course my family did because we had been investigated and vetted by them. Still we didn't know with the obvious exception of Granddad that there was another purpose, that being to retrieve the sunken Soviet Nuclear Submarine or so the story goes. I discovered that story when I was researching her and found the book Project Jennifer and there is quite a bit of information on the Internet now about the Soviet Sub story. So as far as anyone knows now that is the official story, the Glomar was after the sub and the top secret Soviet codes aboard her. As the tale of the subs retrieval goes when the Glomar located her and attempted to raise her into the "moon bay" (that's what my Granddad called it) with the giant claw she broke apart but the codes the crew and half the sub was recovered. This is where the story begins to get strange and this is where my Granddads story about the "spaceship" becomes significant.

According to the people that have written about Fallen Rainbow the dimensions of the moon bay and the sub don't add up. The moon bay was too small to ever have held the sub. Surely the CIA knew the dimensions of the sub and would have designed the moon bay to hold her if they were going to spend that astronomical amount of money (and it was for those times when the country was in a financial mess) on building this ship with the sole purpose of retrieving it.

According to the stories of Fallen Rainbow the sub would never have fit. The submarine was at least two times the size of the special bay that was built in the ship to hold it.

I have a vivid memory of being at the shipyard looking up at the enormous white vessel and my Grandfather telling me how awed he was by this ship and her technology. He pointed up and said to me, "Pal, I've been all the way up to her crows nest and I've never seen anything like it, this baby can do things you can't believe". She really must have been something to impress this veteran ship builder. Certainly cutting edge for her time. Well when I read that the sub would never have fit suddenly my memory of the spaceship story started to make some sense strange as it is. Then I read about the workers who stripped her many years later filing lawsuits because they had become ill from the lead used in the paint that covered her and that there was radiation issues with her. According to the accounts of the UFO retrieval story the lead was necessary to protect the ship from a very radioactive UFO but it could very well have been due to the nuclear capability of the sub.

Still it raised more questions for me. For example if the sub broke apart was there radioactive material released? Did any of the warheads discharge? Where did the radioactivity come from? There are many many questions about the sub story and too many aspects of it that just don't add up in my opinion but I'm still researching her and maybe I'll have those answers someday.

I wanted to know more about Howard Hughes and did some reading about him and found interestingly enough that he was a UFO believer and when he died he was supposedly living alone in a hotel he purchased just outside of Roswell New Mexico and many believe he was obsessed with UFO's when he died. What better place to be if you were a believer than near the notorious Area 51, the Top Secret base in New Mexico believed to be the site of another UFO crash in the 1940's.
According to the Fallen Rainbow legend a UFO crashed in the Pacific Ocean in the late 1960's and Mr. Hughes agreed to help the US government build a craft that would be capable of retrieving it.

It was successful and the UFO was eventually brought to another Air Force base outside of Chicago by rail. As you can probably imagine when I read that and recalled the "spaceship" tale I was startled and am now wildly curious. The more I research her the more I find that makes the "spaceship" story seem plausible although I am a skeptic when it comes to UFO's. If it weren't for my Grandfather and the Glomar Explorer and my first hand experience I would be like most people and think UFOs were mostly the figment of some very creative imaginations or the folly of some very mischievous hoaxers. The thing is I just cant dismiss my Grandfathers strange story he told me 30 plus years ago as I sat on his bed that night.

Thats my UFO story. I believe. Do you ?

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GalleryGod Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-20-05 11:07 AM
Response to Original message
1. I Was a Camp Counselor in the Summer of '67 in the Sierra Nevada Mtns
One night around 0130 hrs. Way,way, after the camp fire and the kiddies had gone to bed I and my favorite "Free Love" female counselor (we had been making out for nearly 2 hours :smoke: ) watched as a light descended and behind a mountain ridge some five miles away. :scared:

I've got other "sky watching" incidents.

I Believe. Always Have. Always Will.
:wow: :hippie: :smoke:
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sffreeways Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-20-05 12:19 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. I know someone
that saw the triangular lights that whip around at speeds that would tear any conventional craft apart in the Sierras. And as I recall it made the evening news.

I've seen several items on different local news around the country of sightings. Always wish the media would follow up on those reports but I guess the men in black won't allow it.

This coming Thursday Peter Jennings is going to have a program on at 9 pm EST about the visitors. Can't wait. I'm not sure I've ever seen a serious prime time event like that with someone of Jennings stature before. Should be interesting.
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