What, you may ask, is “IT“?

 The date was August 21, 1952.  I was just a young naval aviator flying a sleek Grumman F9F-5 Panther jet from the east coast to the west coast all by myself.  I didn’t have a partner (wingman), on this particular flight.  However, if I would have had a wingman, he’d most likely never forget either.

  I had filed a flight plan for the last leg of my trip across the country, which was from El Paso, Texas to San Diego, Ca (North Island NAS).  It was a distance of about 700 miles, well within the 1100 hundred mile range of my aircraft.    At FL 40, (forty thousand feet) it’s awfully quiet except for the chatter with ATC (air traffic control) issuing clearance and traffic advisories.  There were no commercial jets flying high in the sky back then.  They were still years away into the future.  It was lonely and if something appeared on their radar to get their attention, they would call you.

  Suddenly, ATC called saying, “Navy 557, are you still with me?”  I clicked my mic button and replied, “You bet, what you got?”  Albuquerque ATC answered, “We’ve got a target at your twelve o’clock ten miles crossing left to right at a high rate of speed.”  The serial number of my jet was filed as 125557 on the flight plan from El Paso to San Diego NAS.  “I’m lookin” I replied.  “What level?”  “Yours,” was their answer.  “What the hell could be up here except another military aircraft?” was my first thought.  Then I caught sight of something.  It sure didn’t look like another military jet to me.  “Can you identify the target?” was the request of ATC.  “I’ll try,” I replied as I changed my course to the right for an intercept angle on the reported target.   “The target stopped,” they said.  “Now it’s moving at a high rate, almost unbelievable,” the excited controller said.  “ Do you still have a visual on the target?”  “Yeah,” I said.  “It’s big, looks like a cigar, a shiny one but I can’t tell yet.”

  My jet couldn’t fly any faster and as I closed on the target it simply disappeared.  It was mind boggling to see something just move away that fast.  What could it be?

  When I arrived at my destination I was advised to report to operations to file a report.  Report what?

That’s the first time I was informed that the military had a special file called, “Operation Blue Book.”  It was supposed to be a record from pilots who encountered UFO’s.  “Big deal” I thought until I got to thinking about my experience.  Yeah, I never saw anything like that before but it did get my attention and certainly the attention of ATC who caught everything on radar.  They probably were one step ahead of me and informed my destination operations to question me, which they did.  Because normal routine was to shut down, go into operations and simply close a flight plan and go on your way.  But, not this time.  I was hustled into a room for details of my sightings and advised that everything would go into a report…”Blue Book.”

  Where are we today with all the hype about UFO’s?  It’s still an unanswered question that won’t go away and everybody has an opinion.  I still don’t.  However, I know what I saw, I think.  And, no matter what skeptics can comment about saucers, lights in the sky and alien little men taking them to lunch, my position is, IF YOU EVER SEE IT, YOU WIll NEVER FORGET “IT”…  I haven’t!

If you are one of the few who may not know who Captain Ike Eisenhauer is:

Captain A.L. “IKE” Eisenhauer, is a World famous author, speaker, instructor, adventurer, and currently a regular featured columnist for Airliners and Airports Magazine and master Aviator. Captain “Ike” as he is known to aviators worldwide, flew the only privately owned multi-million customized Boeing 707 for renegade genius financier Robert Vesco. Names like Nixon, Juan Tripp, Howard Hughes, Arthur Godfrey, King Juan Carlos of Spain were no strangers to “Ike” and the “Silver Phyllis” (the moniker Ike hung on the 707).

In the days of the presidency of Richard Nixon, shady characters like Bebe Rebozo, a Tampa Banker, Robert Vesco owned politicians and controlled countries. That whole world started to unravel in March 1973 for Vesco when many of his inner circle testified in front of a grand jury in New York city and Vesco fled in his Boeing to parts unknown.

Supported by Costa Rican leaders and even Fidel Castro of Cuba, Vesco was insulated from the jurisdiction of American courts. But In 1995 Castro threw Vesco in Jail and the “fugitive financier” vanished. However, the Silver Phyllis had been hidden and Captain Ike Eisenhauer was contracted by the United States government to find the Boeing and return it to the United Sates by “hook or crook.” Like an undercover agent, a spy, and a swashbuckling buccaneer “Ike” found the airplane and like Mr. Phelps of Mission Impossible, formulated a plan and executed it, to finally recover the multi-million Boeing 707 and brought his beloved “Phyllis” home. He did and the rest is history and it is all in his book “The Flying Carpetbagger” (Captain Ike is currently working on another book)…

You can read about more of Captain Ike Eisenhauer’s true life adventures in his regular articles in The Airliners and Airports Magazine. The is a Link at the right side of the page to their website to order the a subscription to Airliners and Airports Magazine.


  1. Captain Ike Eisenhauer writes about his exciting adventures that he has accumulated over his 60 years as a military and commercial aviator. Read him here and make sure to read his column in Airliners and Airport Magazine. Don’t miss the Book Review on another page within this website too.

  2. Steven A. Johnston 29 Palms Ca says:

    There is nothing like being alone streaking through the night sky with LA fading from sight and then seeing somthing streak by in front of you and make a ninty degree turn and then out of sight. I saw one too, but I never told any one, never made a report, nope nothing. Too many reports paperwork you know the drill.

  3. Eddie Gold says:

    I pride myself as being a well informed aviation enthusiast. I have been around aviation all my life and when in the Air training corps in Liverpool, England I took first place in aircraft identification competitions every year and won a medal for my identification skills at the UK final. From those far off days I have been involved in aviation in one form or another up to and including running a GA support company in Egypt today. It was once said of me that if I couldn’t identify something in the air then it was a UFO, I was that good. But my other interests also gave me an edge on the casual observer. I studied astronomy at college as well as meteorolgy and in my spare time I was an avid bird watcher (ornithologist). If there was something in the sky, day or night, I more than likely could identify it.
    So have I seen a UFO?
    You bet ya. Many times. Generally a small dot in the night sky suddenly changing course at an angle that would have created unsurvivable g-forces to any pilot. I was told on the one occasion I reported this that it was a satellite. I used to do satellite watching and I knew a satellite couldn’t act in that way. But the most amazing sight I ever saw was a fuselage shaped object, something like a 707 fuselage with no windows and no wings! This was low and slow in a valley in Wales and this still gives me shudders every time I think about it. There was no noise and me and my friend were froze on the spot (we were fishing at the time) as it glided down the valley at a few hundred feet above the river before dissapearing around a hill. It was definitely not a balloon/airship as it was narrow, long and engineless, or at least no engines were visible or audible, and it was being controlled in flight.
    In honesty I thought that this must be a top secret RAF aircaft and one day it will be made public like they did with the American SR-71. But that was 1970 and nothing like it has appeared in the public record so I can officially say it was definitely a UFO. Extraterrestrial? Who knows, but a mystery yes and something that will stick in my mind forever.

  4. I once was traveling down the interstae highway in New Mexico in the mid 1970s in the middle of the night and all of a sudden there was a bright light hovering along about a half mile to my one o’clock position. then it was gone, a few minutes it was there again. Anyone in their right mind would assume, as I did, it was either a helicopter or the “bennies” right? Then it was gone… about an hour later there it was again, in same position to my right. Was it my imagination? Who knows, I don’t think so, I can tell you this folks, It was real to me, it was not a helicopter because it stood still with no sound at all. How do I know about the sound? Because, I stopped to look and to water the daisys on the side of the road. Nope it was silent, no sound at all and it was still there, spooky as hell. Now if it had been the cops looking for Mexicans coming over the border as I first thought, that would explain it. But the no sound got me.
    Just like Captain Ike I saw it, I know I saw it, Whatever “IT” was, I’ll never forget “IT”.
    I saw a “something”… Another trucker saw it too. then another, then another and we discussed it at a truckstop later and figured it was a “something” and it was flying and it was surely unidentified. and we decided to go on our way with our own opinions that we had indeed seen what we had seen: an Unidentified Flying Something, a UFS, if you will…

  5. Honney says:

    Superb information here, ol’e chap; keep burinng the midnight oil.

  6. Awesome post! I will keep an on eye on your blog.

  7. I love Ike’s stories. Whether live in the hangar, or in print on the computer – I’m always glad to have the opportunity to get a peek into the memories and knowledge banks of Capt. Ike.

    Keep it up, Buddy. You’re the real deal, and then some!

  8. Andre Melito says:

    Awesome post! I will keep an on eye on your blog.

  9. Incredibly fulfilled IF YOU EVER SEE IT, YOU’ll NEVER FORGET IT | JR HAFER AVIATION BLOG.COM Everything is extremely amenable and incredibly crystal clear description of complications. Its full of surely information. Your site is very helpful. Appreciate your revealing. Awaiting more.

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