Last week came an astonishing new twist to the Roswell mystery - which casts new light on the incident and raises the possibility that we have, indeed, been visited by aliens.
Lieutenant Walter Haut was the public relations officer at the base in 1947, and was the man who issued the original and subsequent press releases after the crash on the orders of the base commander, Colonel William Blanchard.
Haut died last year, but left a sworn affidavit to be opened only after his death.
Last week, the text was released and asserts that the weather balloon claim was a cover story, and that the real object had been recovered by the military and stored in a hangar. He described seeing not just the craft, but alien bodies.
He wasn't the first Roswell witness to talk about bodies. Local undertaker Glenn Dennis had long claimed that he was contacted by authorities at Roswell shortly after the crash and asked to provide a number of child-sized coffins.
When he arrived at the base, he was apparently told by a nurse (who later disappeared) that a UFO had crashed and that small humanoid extraterrestrials had been recovered. But Haut is the only one of the original participants to claim to have seen alien bodies.
Haut's affidavit talks about a high-level meeting he attended with base commander Col William Blanchard and the Commander of the Eighth Army Air Force, Gen Roger Ramey. Haut states that at this meeting, pieces of wreckage were handed around for participants to touch, with nobody able to identify the material.
He says the press release was issued because locals were already aware of the crash site, but in fact there had been a second crash site, where more debris from the craft had fallen. The plan was that an announcement acknowledging the first site, which had been discovered by a rancher, would divert attention from the second and more important location.
Haut also spoke about a clean-up operation, where for months afterwards military personnel scoured both crash sites searching for all remaining pieces of debris, removing them and erasing all signs that anything unusual had occurred.
This ties in with claims made by locals that debris collected as souvenirs was seized by the military.
Haut then tells how Colonel Blanchard took him to 'Building 84' - one of the hangars at Roswell - and showed him the craft itself. He describes a metallic egg-shaped object around 12-15ft in length and around 6ft wide. He said he saw no windows, wings, tail, landing gear or any other feature.
He saw two bodies on the floor, partially covered by a tarpaulin. They are described in his statement as about 4ft tall, with disproportionately large heads. Towards the end of the affidavit, Haut concludes: "I am convinced that what I personally observed was some kind of craft and its crew from outer space."
What's particularly interesting about Walter Haut is that in the many interviews he gave before his death, he played down his role and made no such claims. Had he been seeking publicity, he would surely have spoken about the craft and the bodies.
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