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First police officer on scene to speak at Travis Walton 40th anniversary event

On a cold winter night, nearly 40 years ago, Travis Walton went missing. Desperate to find him, Walton’s coworkers called the police, and when the first officer arrived to hear the men’s story, he was told what has become one of the most amazing and famous accounts in all of Ufology. Now, 40 years later, that officer will share his thoughts on what he was told, and how he feels about their mind-boggling claims now that several decades have passed.

At about 7:30 pm on November 5, 1975, logger Ken Peterson called the police to report a missing person. Deputy Sherriff Chuck Ellison met Peterson, along with 5 of his coworkers, in a shopping mall parking lot to get details about what had happened. That is when Peterson and the other loggers told Ellison that their coworker, Walton, had been beamed by a UFO and was now missing.

The forest at the site of Walton's UFO experience at dusk.
The forest at the site of Walton’s UFO experience at dusk. (Credit: OpenMinds.tv)

The loggers claimed they had all piled into their truck after they had finished working, and on their way home spotted a light in the forest. They decided to investigate, suspecting the light was a forest fire. However, they found that the light was emanating from a strange object hovering above a clearing near the top of a hill.

The men allege that the object was disc-shaped with a smooth, mirror-like, metal exterior. As they watched the object in awe, Walton jumped out of the truck to get a closer look. Walton says he crept up near the object, but after a moment it dawned on him that this was probably not a good idea. However, when he stood up to go back to the truck, he was hit with some sort of force from the craft and he flew several feet back.

Assuming Walton to be dead, the rest of the crew raced away in the truck. After they felt they reached a safe distance, the crew decided they had better go back to check on Walton, but when they got back Walton was gone.

Travis Walton (center) with fellow loggers/witnesses Steve Pierce (left) and John Goulette (right) at the International UFO Congress in 2012. (Credit: OpenMinds.tv)
Travis Walton (center) with fellow loggers/witnesses Steve Pierce (left) and John Goulette (right) at the International UFO Congress in 2012. (Credit: OpenMinds.tv)

The crew then decided to go into town and call the police. In fear of not being believed, they did not disclose the details of how Walton went missing until Deputy Ellison arrived in the parking lot.

The men knew the police would not believe them. However, in his book on the experience, Fire in the Sky, Walton wrote that upon hearing the story, Ellison “exhibited exceptional cool and reserve.” While listening to their story, Ellison studied the men’s faces.

After the crew finished their story, Peterson asked, “You don’t believe us do you?”

Ellison responded, “No, I wouldn’t say I don’t believe you, though you’ve got to admit it sounds pretty wild.”

Ellison then radioed the Sherriff, who brought more men, and a large manhunt ensued. Walton showed up 5 days later and the tale got even stranger.

Ellison has not spoken publicly of the events of those few days often. He was quoted as saying the men seemed genuinely startled and “that if they were acting, they were awfully good at it.”

Otherwise, he has not said much about the case. However, he has now committed to joining Walton and other witnesses and investigators from when the events took place on a panel at the 40th anniversary event of the alleged UFO sighting.

The event is being called the Skyfire Summit, and the activities begin on November 5, 2015. UFO researchers and witnesses to the Walton UFO case will speak over the weekend near where the sighting took place.

Given the number of witnesses to the event, Walton’s case stands alone when it comes to credibility. No one is quite sure what opinions or recollections Ellison is going to share, but given his appearance, and that of other witnesses, the Skyfire Summit should prove to add even more insight into a case that has endured nearly 40 years of scrutiny.

For more information about the Skyfire Summit, visit SkyfireSummit.com.

Alejandro Rojas

Alejandro Rojas is a radio host for Open Minds Radio, editor and contributing writer for Open Minds magazine as well as OpenMinds.tv. For several years Alejandro was the official spokesperson for the Mutual UFO Network as the Director of Public Education. As a UFO/Paranormal researcher and journalist, Alejandro has spent many hours in the field investigating phenomena up close and personal. Alejandro has been interviewed by media organizations around the world, including the largest cable and network news agencies with several appearances on Coast to Coast AM.

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One Comment

  1. After all these years I have to think his story should have fallen apart, it hasn’t. I believe him.

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