DAYTON (TDB) -- Former Arizona Gov. Fife Symington III has the aliens-among-us-crowd stirred up with his admission he saw an unidentified flying object 10 years ago over Phoenix. But few outside the UFO-cults know that Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio was suspected of hiding the aliens who supposedly crashed at Roswell in the late 1940s.
Roswell gets all the tourists, headlines, rumors and fun about the space invaders, Phoenix is going to get some juicy publicity about the latest twist in an unexplained incident. Ohio, sadly, gets left out. What a slight.
Drawing upon some truth, the legend is that Air Force had a hush-hush research station at Wright-Pat where weapons were tested and developed and modified. There was a Foreign Technology Division that poked around in Soviet aircraft and others that got into government hands via spycraft or defectors during the Cold War. According to urban myth and folklore -- or maybe, some deep dark reality -- the aliens who landed in New Mexico were brought to "Hangar 18" at Wright-Patterson where their remains were stored and studied. Hangar 18 once had the conspiracy-theory cachet of Area 51, but has faded from center stage over the last 20 years or so. Wright-Pat, of course, is a research center for the Air Force. As to extra-terrestrials, the stories have been denied, pooh-poohed and turned into the stuff of scoffs.
Meanwhile, Symington's admission that he saw something over Phoenix in March 1997 is going to become another ufology chapter. Perhaps it is time to dust off the tales of Hangar 18. Ohio could always put a slogan on its license tags. But what should it say? Click to read a story about Symington's sighting.
And there is some background about Wright-Patterson AFB HERE , including a mention of Hangar 18. A Web site that discusses the aliens in Ohio theory is HERE. There is a Megadeath track and a band that use Hangar 18 as titles. So the the legend lives. But it definitely has weakened since the 1970s and early 1980s.