On this date, and the day following, sources at the base reported multiple sightings by numerous Air Force teams, of an enormous cigar shaped craft maneuvering high above the missile field. The huge UFO was described as appearing similar to a World War I German Zeppelin, but had no passenger gondola or advertising on its hull, as would a commercial blimp.
On the same day, the missile site temporarily lost the ability to communicate with 50 of its Minuteman III nuclear missiles. The 5 Missile Alert Facilities responsible for launching those ICBMs in time of war, Alpha through Echo, comprising the 319th Strategic Missile Squadron, would have been unable to do so during the period of the disruption.
The Air Force then quickly acknowledged the problem, saying that a back up system could have launched the missiles and that the breakdown had lasted a mere 59 minutes.
According to two missile technicians stationed at F.E. Warren, the communications problem, while intermittent, lasted several hours.
The confidential Air Force sources further report that the commander of the squadron sternly warned its members not to talk to journalists or researchers about the things they may or may not have seen in the sky near the missiles in recent months and threatened severe penalties for violating security.