I was an Airmen in the USAF stationed at Keno AFS, Oregon out of Kingsley Field Oregon, in 1972. I was a Radar Height Operator during my time there on the mountain. I received orders to go to Udorn, Thailand in 1972. So, in August of 1972, I packed my family, wife, young daughter, and a Labrador Retriever puppy. We were heading to Laredo, TX for some leave, where both our families resided and my wife would be living with her parents while I was away. I was driving a 1971 Mustang Mach I, and towing a trailer with most of our belongings on it.
I remember we left in early afternoon and intended to stop only as necessary, so as to make it home as soon as possible. The puppy had been given a small dosage of tranquilizer pills by the base vet so as to keep him calm and sleep since he was riding in a dog carrier at tailgate of the trailer. He was very comfortable and I foresaw no problems as long as we kept to our schedule.
The baby was fed and asleep in the back seat where we had set up a makeshift crib. At about 2:00 a.m. we were heading west on a long dark stretch of road, but could see it was one of those roads that went on forever and then over a distant hill, more highway if you know what I mean.
My wife was asleep when I first saw what looked to be some sort of a road block set-up ahead about a mile ahead. I could see the reflection of the cross stripes on a low wooden type structure, is why I though of it as a road block. And started to wonder why a road block at this time? I was traveling at about 75 mph. So I knew I would soon come up to it. I woke up my wife to see if she saw the same thing. As I got closer, I saw no one at the road block just the low road block structure strung across the right side of the highway. I was about one city block length away from the road block and still no one manning it.
Then, our puppy in back started to howl, but not like a puppy howl or yelp, but like some sort of monster from Hell and very loud howling and just continued to do so till after we passed this area. All my hair stood up on the back of my neck.
My wife and I looked at each other and I hit the gas pedal, feeling very much in danger. Something told me to go and not stop, which I did, I swept around the roadblock on its left side. My wife and I both looked to our right. There was a strange set up, it looked like 3 disks raised around a cleared center area, like a basketball court with bleachers but one side missing. Very bright lights illuminated it, one disk was facing south and about 100' across more or less, and the other two facing each other east and west about same length and all three connected with the south side open. In this area, were many men or not men?, very white in coloring and they were all wearing what I saw as bright blue coveralls or jumpsuits, and scampering around. There were many pieces of equipment around the inset of the dyes but the center part was clear almost like a short runway or large landing pad. My wife said she saw the same thing except that she saw them wearing white coveralls and that they all looked bluish in coloring to her. I looked in the side mirrors and no one was following us.
No lights, no police, nothing. I was going about 75 mph, and didn't slow down for at least 30 minutes to an hour. I did slow down though, and saw that my wife was still nervous, but that our daughter was still fast asleep, the puppy was quiet. I started to look for a place to stop and rest, with people around. I saw a light to our right in the near distance just off the highway so I slowed down and carefully pulled into what looked like an old style storefront parking area with a light swinging in the warm desert breeze from the store, and I remember it even made that squeaky sound as it swung back and forth.
I told my wife we would stay here and in the morning we could get something to eat or drink there. We agreed, I remember getting out of the car and I could see the outline of the store front as I went in back and relieved myself before getting back into the car. Next thing I remember there was a sharp knocking on my car window. It was a man checking to see if we were alright.
I woke up fully and remembered that I felt as though I had slept for a hundred years, the best I had ever felt or since and fully energized and alive.
The man was not excited and said he wanted to know how the accident happened? I asked, "What accident?" He said yours. He said you are 200' from the highway, sitting in the middle of the desert. I just happened to see you as I was driving by. He asked if we were alright? I looked around my wife was just waking up and my daughter was still fast asleep. I said yes I feel great. I looked around, there was no store front no store sign swinging in the breeze and no store. We were in a clearing off the highway. It was a bright sunny day. My reaction at that time was nonchalant, and very strange when I look back at it. I checked on the puppy, he was fine. The car and trailer looked fine. I looked like I pulled off the highway in a straight line to the position I was found in.
I did notice that the truck driver was driving what is typically called an 18 wheeler and that he was parked far to the left on the highway of where we ended up. I thought at that time, boy, he must have great eyesight. He said go ahead and pull off the road to be sure the car is ok. As I did this I noticed a bump in the trailer axle. Upon further inspection I could see it was bent. I can't think of anyway it could happen unless I pulled off and hit something the night prior, but I remember being careful. I thanked the truck driver without exchanging any information nor did he offer any. Anyway I was only able to go about 45 mph till we hit the next town. I am not sure but I think it was Mercury, NV? At this small town I stopped at a service station that told me the trailer was ruined and too dangerous to continue with it. Being an Airman at the time I had little money to rent another one. Instead I sold some our belongings and gave the rest away, along with the puppy to the service station owner. We took it all in stride and just kept going.
It only started to bother me years later by 1981. We divorced, and life went on. But I still speak to her on occasion and this incident does come up and she still remembers the same thing. I did not report this sooner because of my position with the USAF. I later worked in Air Force Intelligence and as a crew member of an E-3A training squadron. I then worked for a US Government agency where I also feared some sort of repercussions. I am now retired. This happened a long time ago. Even if it falls along the parameters of the Secrets Act it has been about 40 years and by now should be declassified.