UFO Invades Area 51—Twice!
As retold by Carlton. W. Austin
It was just another lazy afternoon at Area 51, the Air Force's ultra-high-security, super-secret base in Nevada. Not a creature was stirring, not even a… What’s this?
Tower duty officer Lieutenant—wait, his name is classified; I could tell you, but then I’d have to kill you—got on the horn to base security and alerted them that a UFO was approaching the base, presumably for a landing. Was he coming to rescue his buddies from the Roswell?… Oh, never mind!
In actuality (according to this supposedly true story) this Unidentified Flying Object soon became a very well identified Cessna 172, which proceeded to make an acceptable, if not Air Force perfect, landing at their "secret" base. Needless to say, a phalanx of bad-tempered airmen quickly surrounded the insurgent aircraft, impounded it and hauled the startled pilot into an interrogation room.
According to his story, the hapless pilot took off from Las Vegas, got lost, and spotted the Base just as he was about to run out of fuel. While holding him overnight, the Air Force, with all due diligence, initiated a full-blown investigation, including FBI background check on the pilot.
Next day, finally reassured that the pilot’s story was, indeed, true and that he was no spy, the bemused base commander ordered the plane refueled and pointed the pilot in the direction of Las Vegas. Soon the wayward pilot would be winging his way home, but not before base security subjected him to the ultra version of the third-degree-plus-one. He would, they threatened, among other things, spend the rest of his natural life in prison if he didn’t “forget” everything he’d seen.
The tower cleared the Cessna for immediate departure. They all watched as the 172 drew down to a mere speck, finally disappearing like a desert mirage past the surrounding mountains.
Only twenty-four hours later, the same tower duty officer couldn’t believe it when another UFO came first on the radar screen, then into binocular range. It was another Cessna. As the plane loomed larger in the lenses, the officer thought he recognized the registration number. “It couldn’t be,” he thought aloud. But, yep, it was! The same errant airman.
But this time he wasn’t alone. He had a lovely young lady with him.
Again the Cessna was subdued by a legion of security officers. The gathered crowd couldn’t wait to hear what this fellow, who obviously had several cowl fasteners loose, had to say for himself. They didn’t have to wait long.
"Do anything you want to me,” the exasperated aviator said with resignation, “but my wife is in the plane and you have to tell her where I was last night!" --CWA