|Date:||October 11, 1973|
|Location:||Pascagoula River, Mississippi, USA|
|Sources:||Philip Mantle;Allen Hynek; James Harder; Mississippi Clarion Ledger|
|Summary:||Abduction at the Pascagoula River.|
In the late afternoon of October 11 1973, Charlie Hickson, 42, and Calvin Parker, 18, were fishing at the Pascagoula River, Mississippi. They heard a buzzing sound and saw a strange craft, hovering two or three feet above the ground. The craft was oval-shaped, eight feet tall, and it had two flashing blue lights.
A door opened and three creatures "floated" them onboard. Both men reported being paralysed and numb, and Calvin fainted. The creatures were roughly humanoid in shape, bulky and about five feet tall. Their skin was gray in color and wrinkled; they had no eyes and had slits for mouths.
There were three carrot-like extensions – one where the nose would be on a human, the other two where ears would normally be. Their heads appeared connected directly to their shoulders, with no discernible neck. They had claw-like hands and round feet. Later on, Hickson said he thought they were robots.
After examining the two men, the creatures transported the men back to where they had been. Hickson reported their story to the Keesler Air Force Base, but was told it had nothing to do with UFOs. So they called the Jackson County sheriff's office.
Sheriff Fred Diamond interviewed the men. Next, the police secretly recorded them, thinking they would betray themselves when they thought nobody was listening. But the recorded conversation demonstrates that they were terrified and deeply disturbed by what had happened:
CHARLIE: I can't take much more of that.
CALVIN: I got to get home and get to bed or get some nerve pills or see the doctor or something. I can't stand it. I'm about to go half crazy.
CHARLIE: I tell you, when we through, I'll get you something to settle you down so you can get some damn sleep.
CALVIN: I can't sleep yet like it is. I'm just damn near crazy.
CHARLIE: Well, Calvin, when they brought you out - when they brought me out of that thing, goddamn it I like to never in hell got you straightened out.
CALVIN: My damn arms, my arms, I remember they just froze up and I couldn't move. Just like I stepped on a damn rattlesnake.
CHARLIE: They didn't do me that way.
CALVIN: I passed out. I expect I never passed out in my whole life.
CHARLIE: I've never seen nothin' like that before in my life. You can't make people believe...
CALVIN: I don't want to keep sittin' here. I want to see a doctor...
CHARLIE: They better wake up and start believin'... they better start believin'.
CALVIN: You see how that damn door come right up?
CHARLIE: I don't know how it opened, son. I don't know.
CALVIN: It just laid up and just like that, those son' bitches come out.
CHARLIE: I know. You can't believe it. You can't make people believe it...
CALVIN: I paralyzed right then. I couldn't move.
CHARLIE: They won't believe it. They gonna believe it one of these days. Might be too late. I knew all along they was people from other worlds up there. I knew all along. I never thought it would happen to me.
CALVIN: You know yourself I don't drink.
CHARLIE: I know that, son. When I get to the house I'm gonna get me another drink, make me sleep. Look, what we sittin' around for. I gotta go tell Blanche... what we waitin' for?
CALVIN: I gotta go to the house. I'm gettin' sick. I gotta get out of here.
CALVIN: It's hard to believe . . . Oh God, it's awful... I know there's a God up there...
UFOlogists Dr. James Harder, professor at the University of California, and Dr. J. Allen Hynek, professor of astronomy at Northwestern University of Chicago, interviewed the two men. Harder attempted to hypnotize them, but they were too anxious and distracted for the procedure to work. Hynek believed that the men had a very real, frightening experience.
Both men passed a lie detector test. They have maintained their story throughout their lives. UFO researcher Philip Mantle looked deep into the story and wrote a book about it with Parker, "Pascagoula - The Closest Encounter: My Story".
Second UFO encounter
In May 1974, Hickson was driving with his wife, their son and their daughter Sheila. "It was almost midnight," Hickson says, "and I kept noticing a light back behind us. I nudged Sheila, who was sitting on the front seat beside me, and said, 'Look out that window and see if that light ain't following us.' She looked out the window and just froze. Blanche saw it and started screaming."
Seconds later, a disk shaped craft was hovering 150 feet above, and to the right, of their car. "I saw it with my own eyes," says Sheila Hynum of Vicksburg, who was 18 at the time. "Mama was so scared, she was screaming."
"It was a terrifying thing to see," Blanche Hickson recalled. "It affected me bad. Tore me up. We stopped the car and Charles wanted to get out, but I wouldn't let him. We were all grabbing him and holding him. It hovered there a while, then just disappeared."
Additional witnesses come forward
- Raymon Broadus, a probation and parole officer from Pascagoula, saw something strange flying in the air at the evening of the abduction. Officer Ryder of the Jackson County sheriff's office confirmed that Mr. Broadus reported it to him.
- Emmanuel P. Sigalas, a Greek pastor, was interviewed on July 17th, 1981 by UFO investigator Stefanos Panagiotakis. Mr. Sigalas had witnessed the same UFO on the same evening as Hickson and Parker. He was accompanied by two others at the time, Raymond Broadus and a woman named Joan. Mr. Sigalas recalled that he was called on the phone by Dr. Allen Hynek and that he told his story to Hynek.
- On October 21, 2001, Natalie Chambers of the Associated Press
reported that a new witness to the UFO incident had recently surfaced. Retired US Navy officer Mike Cataldo had observed a strange craft on the same date in that area. Cataldo said:
"We (Cataldo, Ted Peralta and Mack Hanna) left the shipyard and rode in Ted's Volkswagen to Hwy. 90, traveling west towards Buloxi, Mississippi. It was not even dusk yet, there was still some daylight to see by. When we first saw this thing through the windshield we thought it was a shooting star, going from right to left, but then it came down into a marshy, tree-lined area and hovered there for about 30-seconds. It was spinning and had blinking lights on the top of it all around its edge, all the way around it in a circle. These were blinking lights arranged on it just like you would tape lights to the side of a cake pan."
Cataldo also said that there was a definite structure to be seen, not just blinking lights. Then while enroute to Ocean Springs as darkness was setting in, he saw the same object a second time for another 45 seconds to one minute before it again shot off in the same manner as before. Mike Cataldo said that there were other motorists in the area during each episode and that some of them had slowed down to look at the UFO.
- Maria and Jerry Blair came forward after seeing Calvin Parker on TV. They were interviewed in January 2019 by Dr. Irena Scott. They were in the parking lot of Graham's Seafood on the opposite side of the river, when Parker and Hickson were on the west bank. Maria saw what she thought was an airplane because of its bright lights flashing on, that "didn't act like it knows what direction it wants to go". It went on for 20 to 25 minutes.
Next, "We heard this loud, thumping splash in the river," Maria said. "I looked over the side of the pier, and that's when I thought I saw a person in the river. I was looking right down on it. It looked like a person, but there was something different about it. It only came to the surface of the water. As soon as I saw it, it just went back down in the water." Maria thought it was a person in some sort of diving gear.
- On the same evening, Judy Branning was sitting in a car a few miles away at a traffic signal with her roommate and their dates. Branning said: "We were at a red light at Chicot and Highway 90, and we were basically sitting on the railroad track. I saw some lights, and I wasn't sure what I was looking at because it was so far away." Branning thought it was an airplane at first, but as it came closer and flew over the car she was in, the four realized it wasn't. "It didn't make noise," Branning said. "It had bright, bright lights. It got closer and it was hovering. It was kind of a saucer shape or disc shape with a rounded top. The radio started sounding like it was running through all the stations and the car went dead. We were freaking out."
Calvin Parker has met with the Blairs and Branning and said he's happy they are now telling their stories publicly.