In 1961, Maj. Donald E. Keyhoe, USMC (Ret.) was the director of the National Investigations Committee on Aerial Phenomena. That year, he and his organization were making life difficult for the Air Force with criticism of their UFO investigation, Project Blue Book. This was nothing new, but now they were close to getting open hearings in Congress to address their criticisms.
Then, on April 18, 1961, Joe Simonton, a 54 year-old plumber, handyman and part-time chicken farmer, reported a UFO encounter involving humanoids and offered physical evidence not usually associated with extraterrestrials. This was a strange case with a single witness, but Blue Book Director Robert Friend thought the Air Force should get involved. He mistakenly thought that NICAP would turn the case into a big story and accuse the Air Force of shirking its duties.
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