In Feb 1980 while on D Flight, I was on patrol with A1C Keith Duffield. At that time, East Gate was closed but we had to make checks to ensure the back gate -- East Gate was locked. I was just relieved that we didn't have to stand guard in the middle of the night...like when I first got to Bentwaters in 1978.
It was a boring night...slow (not unusual). I was in a pick-up truck that was postioned behind the East Gate shack (there was and still is a large paved area there. East Gate was on the side of the road (old wooden shack.)
My patrol pick-up truck was positioned looking off base. We were sitting there for a few minutes. I just finished reviewing the check sheet and we weren't in any rush. Then we saw a bright white light coming from the North Sea (Moving from East to West) in the direction of the runway.
At first we thought it was a regular aircraft. I kept looking at the runway to see if the lights would go on...they didn't. Then the light stopped about two football fields lengths away from us and just stayed suspended in the sky.
Then it made some geometric movements going sharply straight up, the straight down, then left (North), then right (South) and then broke into three pieces and sped off across the runway then straight up into the night sky at an incrediblely fast speed. The entire time the object did not make any sound or mechanical noise. We didn't see a shape to the ufo.
Well, I did report it to the Desk Sergeant and he instructed us to go to the air tower (which I did). We woke the guy up in the tower. He said he didn't see anything, and he said that maybe we saw some fighter aircraft from Bawdsey. Both Duffield and I had been around aircraft now for a couple of years that we clearly KNEW what fighter aircraft sounded like. We did not see a fighter aircraft or anything that made a mechanical engine sound. Some wonder if we saw a stealth. Does a stealth move in the pattern, splitting into three independent pieces and speeding off into the stars? The guys on the radio gave me a lot of grief and teasing over it, so much so that I felt pressured to drop the issue. I told Duffield that I wasn't going to pursue it unless told by my supervisor to do so, and I strongly sensed that my supervisor was relieved that I didn't pursue it.
As you could imagine -- airmen didn't have any crediblity. I resent the entire experience because I felt if I pursued what I had seen then I would have been "snapped out". Guys were acting weird there. Bentwaters was a strange place and I think that we were unknowing participants to something...only I don't know. I must say that I was glad that someone as arrogant as Burroughs also saw it. The rest of my air force experience and military experience was and is great.
For me, working at Bentwaters was a lousy experience. I resented the macho attitude. I think people there were off center, off kilter and extreme in their behaviors. I was glad that someone (a male, a sergeant and also LTCol Halt another male and who happened to be an officer) saw the ufo siting in December 1980. It is sad to say, but rank and being male added credibility where I pursued it, I know my career would have ended at Bentwaters--that is a reality--a fact.
Lori Rehfeldt -
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