NPS Article – UFO’s
Info Gathered from Al Schmidt and an article by Billy Booth
I grew up in a small town on the Mississippi coast called Gautier. In the early 70’s, there were many UFO sightings up and down the Gulf coast. My best friend had a house on the local bayou, but it had great access to the Gulf and a great view out over it. I spent many a night looking out there…hoping to see a UFO of my own. Only once did I see a light flying fairly low above the horizon, flying faster than any plane I had ever seen. Was it a UFO???
One of the most celebrated and publicized encounters was of 2 local men in the next town over, Pascagoula (Where I Graduated High School) and there close encounter. I had fished from that very same spot on many occasions, but never at night. Their story follows:
Prelude: On the night of October 10, 1973, there was a UFO sighting by fifteen different witnesses who saw a strange, unknown object fly over a housing project in St. Tammany Parish, New Orleans, Louisiana. Two of the witnesses were policeman. This sighting would only be the beginning of what was to occur the next night on the nearby Pascagoula River. Two fishermen, nineteen-year-old Calvin Parker, and forty-two-year-old Charles Hickson were about to have an experience that would forever change their lives.
Parker and Hickson were good friends, and often fished together. They were both living in the town of Gautier, Mississippi. On one particular night, they were fishing the waters of the Pascagoula River, when they heard a strange sound… a type of buzzing. The two men immediately turned to see what the source of the strange noise was.
They were shocked to see an egg-shaped object with bluish front lighting. The object was only a few feet above the water, and about ten yards from the two frightened fishermen.
While they sat stunned, looking at the weird flying machine, a door opened in the UFO, and to their utter amazement, three beings of unknown origin began to float toward the two. The beings did have legs, but did not use them-they literally floated across the water toward Hickson and Parker. The two fishermen would later attempt to describe what the beings looked like “… about five feet tall, had bullet-shaped heads without necks, slits for mouths, and where their noses or ears would be, they had thin, conical objects sticking out, like carrots from a snowman’s head.”
Hickson sat frozen on the river bank. Suddenly, two of the odd-looking beings grabbed him, while the third being snatched Parker, who immediately fainted from fear. The beings supported Hickson by literally holding up his body. As they did, he felt numbness over his entire body. By some power he could not see, he was floated into the bowels of the waiting object to a brightly-lit room.
The room had no gravity. He floated with a strange eye-like device. This device would go over his entire body as if it was scanning him.
After the eye-like device was finished with Hickson, he was left floating in the room alone. The beings had probably left to examine Parker. Approximately 20 minutes after the ordeal had begun, it was over. Hickson was now floated back out of the craft. Back on the river bank, he could see Parker, who was crying and praying on the ground. Shortly, the strange flying object rose straight into the night sky, and flew away.
After some time to regain their senses and strength, they began to talk about what action they should take. At first they were afraid to report their experience, but they felt obligated to tell someone. What if these beings were taking other people in the area? Fighting fears of public ridicule, they called Kessler Air Force Base in Biloxi. They were instructed to report their incident to the local sheriff’s department.
Not wanting to deal with local law enforcement, they decided instead to go to their local newspaper office. The office was closed, which left the men only one recourse-the sheriff office. As would be expected, the local sheriff thought their story was a hoax or trick. Trying to get to the bottom of their story, the two fishermen were placed in a room wired for sound. It was thought that they would discuss the joke between themselves, and their story would be found out. This was not to be. Soon law enforcement personnel knew that something had certainly frightened Hickson and Parker, and that this was no joke.
It would be no time until details of the alleged abduction began to leak out to the public. First, the account of the incident was published in local newspapers, soon followed by the wire services. In a matter of a couple of days, the Pascagoula, Mississippi, abduction was a big news item over the entire United States. Aerial Phenomena Research Organization (APRO) sent University of California professor James Harder to investigate the story. Dr. J. Allen Hynek, who represented the U.S. Air Force also would research the case.
Harder and Hynek did a lot of the investigative work together. The two well-known researchers first interviewed the two fishermen together. Harder tried to do regressive hypnosis on Hickson, but the abductee was so frightened, that the hypnosis was stopped. To get things off on solid ground, both of the witnesses took polygraph tests, and both passed without a problem. Harder and Hynek both believed that the two tormented men were telling the truth.
Esteemed UFO researcher J. Allen Hynek would proclaim that “… there was definitely something here that was not terrestrial.”
Even after thirty-plus years, both Calvin Parker and Charles Hickson still testify to the same story, and have never wavered in their account of what happened that October night on the Pascagoula River.
There have been many articles, magazine reports, and television documentaries done on the case, and the two men have given numerous interviews about their experience. Their account, although bizarre, is one of the best researched and documented alien abduction cases in UFO history.