Thursday, October 27, 2016

X-Zone Broadcast Network - Ray Stanford

For those of you who thought that this week’s show would feature Brad Steiger, I received an email from Brad saying that he was sick and would have to postpone. That left me with a hole, but I contacted Ray Stanford who graciously agreed to move his interview from November 9 to this week. Brad will be scheduled for a future show.

There were questions left over from my other Socorro UFO landing/Lonnie Zamora sighting show with Ben Moss and Tony Angiola and Ray was the man who had the answers. He went into detail about the picture he had taken of the dynamite shack that Zamora thought might have exploded, and what that photograph showed. We also discussed the idea that Zamora hadn’t talked of figures but only white coveralls. Ray, who might be the only living person who was involved in the original investigation in late April 1964, provided his insights into what he had seen, and what he had heard and how this white coverall confusion came to be.

You can listen to the program here:

Ray Stanford wrote (for those who wanted to find a copy of his book), “The email address for people to use to pay for the book at PayPal is:

“If you can post that with the statement that the signed, first edition, brand new book costs $50 + $10 for shipping and handling via Priority Mail, it will be appreciated.”

And, of course, there are those papers about dinosaurs that might interest some of you. As I mentioned, the address is a little complicated for a radio show. You can find them here:


If all goes well, next week I’ll talk with a man who had been part of the Blue Book team for the last couple of years and who had the boxes that Rob Mercer found. He is fascinating if for no other reason than he was one of those assigned to Blue Book and we can prove it.


Paul Young said...

Another good interview.
Interesting comments from Ray concerning Hynek that he absolutely must have heard Zamora describing the men the size of 10 year old boys WEARING what looked to be white cover-alls.
I know that some people here thought I was being overly harsh with my comments concerning Hynek on KR's earlier blog, but Ray confirms (to me, at least) that Hynek was not fit for purpose.
Not only was he a shameless debunker in his dealings with the public, but he left out so much information, told him directly from Zamora, that should have been included in his BB report. I can't figure out what Hynek's motivation was in (seemingly)being so deliberately vague. Was he a saboteur or simply inept?
Just because Hynek became an ETH'er, later in life, shouldn't detract from the enormous amount of damage he caused to investigations of the early UFO cases. In any case, I'm always suspicious of poachers turned gamekeeper.

Neal Foy said...

Excellent interview Kevin.

This answered questions I had regarding the photograph of the dynamite shack and possibly similar craft. I hope Ray has time to find the original negative. His account of Hyneck's interview soon after the event is also very interesting.

Mark O'Connell has recently published a biography on Allen Hyneck. He apparently had access to the CUFOS files and he talked to Ray about his involvement in the Zamora investigation with Hyneck. I don't know if any of this made it into the book. I might be of interest to contact Mark.

Here's a link to his blog where he writes about his phone call with Ray.

I have a few suggestions for questions to ask the BB officer when you interview him.
How did he become involved with BB? Was he given any other choice of duty assignment at the time? Is he now under any confidentiality agreement regarding his time with BB? Is he aware of any cases that were passed on to some other agency as Hyneck contended? What was the general atmosphere around the office? Was the office in debunker mode or did they have any interest in making genuine objective investigations?

I'm looking forward to listening to your program.

Ben Moss said...

In speaking with Ray many times on this case Hynek does come across as The Absent Minded Professor. When Lonnie pointed out the rock possibly broken by one of the landing struts (and with metal scrapings), Hynek looked at it and concurred, but LEFT IS WHERE IT WAS. Thanks to Ray for going back and picking it up. I have a picture of the rock today, I just cannot attach it here. Great interview Kevin!

David Rudiak said...

Kevin, noticed on the RR blog you commenting that you have a document suggesting that Chavez didn't arrive on the scene for another 10 to 15 minutes. That document is necessarily wrong.

The encounter was quite close to town, not in the middle of nowhere, only a mile from the Socorro police department, and half a mile from the main highway. Chavez was the first backup policeman out there. Chavez would have had to be around 10 miles away for it to take him that long. And it is quite impossible for it to take more than 10 to 15 minutes for much of the Socorro police department to travel only one mile to arrive after Chavez. They could have run it faster.

Also, we have it documented straight from Zamora himself that Chavez was overlooking the scene from the first mesa top while the object was still visible and disappearing in the distance. E.g., in his interview with KSRC radio's Walter Shrode was the following exchange:

SHRODE: About ten minutes to six. [when it happened] And you did place a call then to Sgt. Chavez of the State Police to come on out and help you with the investigation?

ZAMORA: From the time I saw this object, which I didn’t know what it was, I placed the call to Sgt. Chavez of the State Police, called him to come out there and help me on this. And he said, “Yes, I’ll be right there, in about two minutes.”

SHRODE: And he arrived just about two or three minutes after the object had taken off and left.

ZAMORA: Well, the object was still about a couple of moments (?) up there when he arrived.

Here's another example, from an AP retrospective article a year later (Hobbes NM News-Sun, Apr. 23, 1965):

"Zamora said he called for help and State Police Sgt. Sam Chavez was on the scene within two minutes. By then the UFO was flying off toward the mountains. 'If he (Chavez) had just paid attention he would have seen it,' Zamora said.

Thus according to Zamora, Chavez WAS in a position to have seen it, whether he did or not. And it took him only about two minutes to get there from the time Zamora first called him.

Paul Young said...

Ben wrote..."In speaking with Ray many times on this case Hynek does come across as The Absent Minded Professor."

I can't understand why an astronomer was sent to investigate the Socorro incident in the first place.
The expertise of the local butcher, baker or candlestick maker was as relevant to the investigation of a craft that could manage a controlled landing and then take-off again, as the expertise of an astronomer!
It was obviously not a meteor (or Venus) so what possible help could Hynek have been?
Zamora needed to be interviewed by an aviation expert, not a stargazer.

KRandle said...

Paul -

Because he had been hired as the scientific consultant to Blue Book... but, according to the story, he was there as a private citizen rather than a representative of the Air Force. Sergeant Moody was the official Air Force investigator. Of course several years later it was revealed that Hynek was there in some official capacity. At any rate, Hynek was their scientific consultant and the local butcher, baker or candlestick maker might not possession a science background which makes Hynek the better choice.

KRandle said...

David -

You comment doesn't alter the fact that there is a document that suggests Chaves didn't get there quite as fast as reported. Chaves never told anyone that he had seen anything on the ground or in the air.

The real point is that the document, that was found in those Blue Book files that Rob Mercer obtained, suggests that it took Chaves a little longer to get there than originally thought. Now, the real argument is who wrote those notes. It is interesting that in the beginning they refer to Zamora, but by the end, they refer to Zamoro. I don't believe they are Hynek's notes, or Holder's notes because both are mentioned by name in them. They may have been notes created sometime after the event as someone else read through the Blue Book file and put together the notes for whatever reason.

David Rudiak said...


The document does not indicate a "little" bit longer, but at least 5 times longer. There is a HUGE difference between Zamora himself saying that Chavez got to the scene (or overlooking the scene) within about two minutes from when Zamora contacted him, and some document from a totally unknown source reporting 10-15 minutes. Clearly such a document is wrong. (Maybe it left out the decimal points and meant to say 1.0-1.5 minutes, though that seems a bit short.)

If 10-15 min. were true, then the Socorro police, only 1 mile away, would have easily beat Chavez there, instead of Chavez being the first there (also with Zamora indicating that Chavez would also have seen the object as it disappeared in the distance if he had only known where to look). This was followed by other Socorro police a few minutes later. (According to Stanford, state patrolman Ted Jordan, being on the same frequency as Chavez, also heard Zamora asking Chavez for assistance and headed out to the scene to help, arriving a few minutes after Chavez, but apparently before anyone from the Socorro police dept. Jordan then immediatley began snapping photos, the ones that Hynek later said were fogged by radiation.)

Absolutely no possible way for Chavez taking 10-15 minutes to get there.

Getting lost in this is my point that although there is no known written or recorded documentation of Chavez also seeing the object (as Stanford said was the story of every policeman he talked to), Zamora made it clear that Chavez did indeed arrive in time during its departure phase to have seen the object before it disappeared. That is indirect, though not conclusive, supporting evidence that Chavez may indeed have seen the object disappearing in the distance, but chose not to talk about it, at least not on the record.

Chavez did go on record that something was definitely there, but thought it might be a government secret project. Stanford thought that maybe Chavez didn't totally back up Zamora on actually seeing the object because he was concerned it would add too much public credence and possibly compromise secrecy of such a project. Both Chavez and Zamora were conservative policemen and didn't believe in that UFO nonsense.

KRandle said...

David -

Buried in your hyperbole is the fact that your five times longer is just eight minutes. While Chavez may have said he would be there in two minutes, just as many of us say that to indicate an immediate response, it could have taken him longer that the two minutes.

And getting lost in this is that there is no record of any of the other police officers seeing anything. Yes, there is second-hand testimony for that, but, it is second hand. Sure, we've heard the excuse for why some of them said nothing about what they might have seen, and we know that others supposedly said nothing because of the way the MSM treated Zamora, but the fact remains, we only have second-hand testimony.

No one is suggesting that there wasn't something there, only that Lonnie Zamora, who is described by about everyone who had anything to say about him was that he was a reliable police office, but that there is no other first-hand testimony other than that of the two guys from Dubuque, Iowa. As far as I can tell, the only UFO researcher to interview them, Ralph DeGraw was not overly impressed with their reliability.

Craig McDaniel said...


I hope I am not asking much, but are there Google type map for the Socorro event? The reason for asking is there have been a handful of references about where the original car chase (if that what you want to call it) by Zamora, when he broke that off then went for the craft. I have read a couple of minor differences where the first sighting started to the time Zamora got on site. Also things happened fairly fast in all of the points of view to the time the craft took off.

If you have a map, I would be grateful.

David Rudiak said...

Buried in your hyperbole is the fact that your five times longer is just eight minutes.

No, five times Zamora/Chavez's 2 min. is 10 min., the low end of 10-15 min. 15 min. would be 7.5 times greater than 2 min., nearly an order of magnitude. It is not my "hyberbole", but the document’s, which is CLEARLY and GROSSLY wrong (like much else in BB files, like Conner’s report, which has most numbers BADLY in error, like Zamora parking 150 yards from the site).

What is so special about the 10-15 min. value, which has zero provenance (who wrote it and when; what was their connection to the investigation) and contradicts other docs in BB/FBI files and primary witness Zamora? Why not Conner’s “3 minutes after the object... had disappeared”? (with Conner exaggerating that the object itself took 3 min. to disappear vs. Zamora’s 20 seconds in his Holder statement) Or agent Byrnes saying Chavez and XXXX (Jordan or Lucky) arrived “quickly on the scene”. 10-15 min. is not my idea of “quickly”, especially when anyone like undersherriff Lucky at the police dept., only 1 mile away, could have gotten there in 4 min. or less, and Chavez clearly beat everybody else out there. Given this, how could it possibly take Chavez 10-15 min. to get there?

In contrast, we know the exact provenance of the 2 minute value—Zamora. I already gave two examples: his radio interview with Shrode within days and a retrospective news article a year later: "Zamora said he called for help and State Police Sgt. Sam Chavez was on the scene within two minutes. By then the UFO was flying off toward the mountains. 'If he (Chavez) had just paid attention he would have seen it,' Zamora said.” Likewise in his radio interview he stated: the object was still about a couple of moments up there when he arrived. (with Chavez indicating he was close by and could be there in 2 minutes)

Doing the math, the two statements (Chavez there within 2 minutes and object still visible when he got there) turn out to be completely consistent with one another, but NOT if Chavez got there 3 min. or 10-15 min. after the object had disappeared.

First, distance of landing site from the main highway: .5 miles. Time to drive there directly from highway at ~15 mph steady speed: ~2.0 min. (having driven this wretched, road, that is about the max. average it can be driven without ripping out bottom of the car.)

Zamora got delayed a little bit needing 3 trys to get up first mesa. Chavez got delayed a little bit by missing the turnoff and having to double back. Add about 30 sec. travel time each.

Distance to top of first mesa where Zamora first saw craft and beings: about 1/3 mile. Travel time at 15 mph + 30 sec: ~110 sec. Zamora stops a few seconds to observe, then radios dispatch + Chavez for assistance: add 10 sec. Clock now starts on Chavez's estimated 2 min. to get there. Time for Zamora to travel last 1/6 mile and park: ~40 sec. Total time from start to parking: ~ 160 sec.

Zamora calls into dispatch saying he is going out on foot. He takes a few steps, then the object takes off with a roar. Add 10 sec. Zamora runs away, the objects zooms off into the distance and fades from sight in about 30-40 sec. from takeoff. Zamora's total time of sighting: about 200-210 sec. Add or subtract 30 seconds overall uncertainty in timing (170-240 sec.), but basically whole thing lasted about 3-4 minutes.

Now Chavez: Zamora called at about 120 sec.. Like Zamora, it should take Chavez about ~110 sec. for him to crest first mesa and be overlooking scene as object disappeared in distance. So ~230 sec into sighting. This, of course, depends on how close to turnoff he was and how long it took him to double back when he missed it the first time (also my assumed speeds of travel).

David Rudiak said...

But we can see that despite the uncertainties the two estimates overlap at about ~240 sec. into the sighting, meaning they are theoretically compatible. Thus it is entirely possible Chavez could have gotten there just in time to have seen the object in the distance, as Zamora said he could have, because the object was still visible when Chavez arrived at the scene. But NOT if Chavez got there in 10-15 min, or 3 min. after the object disappeared. So who are yuh gonna believe: the primary witness or the BB ghostbusters?

It would take maybe another minute for Chavez on top of mesa 1 to radio Zamora last time for location and drive remainder of the way (with Zamora saying Chavez was looking right at him when he radioed). This means Chavez should have gotten there within 5 min. of the start of the sighting or about 3 min. after Zamora radioed him to come out alone. This is a FAR, FAR cry from 10-15 minutes of the document.

And probably only about 2-3 minutes after Chavez got there, fellow state patrolman Ted Jordan arrived, having listened in to the Zamora/Chavez call on the state patrol frequency. This was followed almost immediately by undersheriff Lucky, who again was only 1 mile and no more than 4 minutes away, leaving the police station right after Zamora excitedly radioed in after the object departed.

While Chavez may have said he would be there in two minutes, just as many of us say that to indicate an immediate response, it could have taken him longer that the two minutes.

That's not what Zamora’s testimony and reconstructive math of the situation indicates. Chavez could indeed have gotten there in roughly 2 min. or less (i.e., to a point overlooking the scene) just in time to have possibly seen the object fade in the distance, as Zamora said he was in position to do.

One final minor point: from the top of the first mesa about 800-900 feet from Zamora and his parked car, it would have been very hard for Chavez to have seen either because of the overall rise in the terrain and the car being parked over the crest of the second mesa. This I verified when I visited on-site in 2012. I parked my car at about the position Zamora would have and could barely see the top from the position Chavez would have been as he was looking for Zamora atop the first mesa. Zamora, however, would have stood above the level of his car and could have easily seen Chavez’s car. Thus when Chavez radioed Zamora for his location, Zamora stated he told Chavez he was staring right at him (but he would have been hard to see from Chavez’s viewpoint).

Ben Moss said...

I have it but cannot attach here. It is in Ray's book. It was not a car chase he was on random patrol and started following the speeder when he saw the object. It is not far from the police office, maybe 1 mile. I drove the route when in Socorro. The road is the same, and the unpaved road up to the site is rough.The whole event was maybe 3 minutes.

KRandle said...

David -

Semantics again. five times two is ten, minus the two minutes that is claimed for the drive time of Chaves, equals a difference of eight.

You accept the times based on what the witnesses said, but seem to ignore the fact that Zamora was agitated which tampers with the time estimates and that no one actually had a clock on any of this. I merely point out that some of the facts are based on information that might be slightly skewed... and the fact that none of the police officers except Zamora went on the record describing sightings. We can argue all day about whether Chaves saw anything, was in a position to see anything but that the end of that day, Chaves left no record.

KRandle said...

David -

While I know upfront that you'll reject this out of hand, but Moody, in his report wrote, "From the ensuing activity monitored on the radio Sgt. Chaves immediately made an effort to reach patrolman Zamora and arrived about 3 minutes after the object observed by Lonnie Zamora disappeared."

The real point is that we can find nearly whatever we want in the file. You can reject it because it is from Moody and that he makes mistakes in his report even calling the FBI agent Barnes... and you could point out that according to Moody, "Capt Holder claim no knowledge of the red mark."

There are few points that can be argued in absolutes... for nearly everything you suggest, I can find the opposite at some point. The idea is to check all the evidence, not just that which confirms a specific point of view.

David Rudiak said...

Kevin, (1/2)

First, above I DID mention Moody’s claims of timing (though mistakingly said it was Conner, who accompanied him). Moody claimed it took 3 minutes for the object to disappear and Chaves didn’t show up for another 3 minutes after that, which is more nonsense (more below). I deliberately gave that as an example of the most extreme estimate of timing from somebody whose name we know and the fact that he was actually at the site and interviewed some principles like Chaves and Zamora. Even with Moody’s extreme timing, it was still far short of the 10-15 minutes of that other undocumented “doc” in BB files claiming it took Chaves 10-15 min. to get there.

Why shouldn’t we take Moody’s timing too seriously? Because his timing seriously conflicts with all other evidence, he spent a minimal amount of time investigating (only 3-4 hours), and clearly got a large number of basic facts wrong,.. Here’s a list of the more serious Moody mistakes in his BB report.

1. The event happened “shortly” after 5 p.m. WRONG! Started around 5:50 pm.

2. Zamora parked his car 150 yards from the object and proceeded to within 100 feet on foot. WRONG! Zamora said he first spotted the object from an estimated 150-200 yards (stopping his car to observe for a few seconds), NOT that he parked his car there, which would make ZERO sense since he could drive MUCH closer to the object on the road. (The road came within 130 feet of the object and he could have gotten even closer than that off-road.) Also Zamora said he took only a few steps before the object started to take off with a roar and then ran in back of his car for protection. All kinda hard to do if your car is 350 feet away where you parked it.

3. Zamora could not see the bottom of the object or any of its legs when he got close (within 100 feet). WRONG! Zamora said he could see 2 girderlike legs (which he drew in his stick figure drawing).

4. The dynamite shack was only 200 feet from the landing site. WRONG! More like 500-600 feet. (Which can be determined objectively from such things like period topo maps. Also I found the likely remains of the shack at that distance in an on-site visit.)

5. The object faded out in the vicinity of a mill 6 miles distance. WRONG! The perlite mill at the base of the mountains was only 2 miles away. Zamora said the object angled up sharply when it reached there and climbed up the mountains, actualy fading out in the vicinity of 6-mile canyon, NOT the mill.

6. At no time did the object rise above the mountain background. WRONG! It could not seem to fade out 6 miles away, or 4 miles beyond the mountains, unless it rose ABOVE the mountains.

7. The whole episode took no more than 10 minutes. WRONG! It would have taken Zamora no more than 3 minutes to drive the ½ mile from the highway, also remembering that Zamora was responding with some urgency thinking either a dynamite explosion or car crash. Even using Moody’s grossly exaggerated 3 minutes for the object to disappear from sight (vs. Zamora’s estimated 20 seconds), that is still no more than 6 minutes total.

8. Chaves arrived 3 minutes after the object had disappeared or 6 min. after the object departed. WRONG! According to Zamora, Chaves told him he was only 2 minutes away and arrived within 2 minutes, also stating Chaves was overlooking the scene while the object was still departing in the distance. He could have still seen the object if he had known where to look. Furthermore, Zamora called central dispatch within seconds after the object departed the scene (asking dispatcher Nep Lopez to look for the object). At this point, police backup would have rushed to the scene from the police station, only 1 mile away. It would take only about 4 minutes to arrive, meaning they would have beat Chaves there by 2 minutes if Moody’s 6 min. after departure were correct for Chaves’ arrival. But we know it was Chaves who was there first by at least several minutes, not Socorro police.

David Rudiak said...

(2 of 2)
Moody got a few things right. (E.g., his 300 yards,or BB map of 800 ft. at which Zamora first saw the object is more accurate than Zamora’s estimate of 150-200 yards, something I verified with an on-site visit,.) But I see mostly sloppy investigation and mass confusion (or deliberate misinformation) on his part, spending only ~2 hours on site, or a cursory investigation at best. From other BB docs, we know Moody was EXTREMELY hostile to the whole subject of UFOs.

Yes, you could pick and choose which individual account to believe, but there is another, more scientific way to determine who was right and who was wrong. First of all, you compare accounts and see which are internally consistent and which are self-contradictory. Moody’s account is full of internal contradictions and logical absurdities.

We can also objectively determine such things as distances to the various landmarks mentioned by Zamora, such as the dynamite shack, mill, mountains, 6-mile canyon, or distances of the site from the highway and police station, and where Zamora could actually have seen the object initially. From the latter distances, we can make very good estimates of the times it would take for Zamora, Chaves, and Socorro police to drive out there (mindful also that police might push the time because of the urgency of getting out there ASAP). You don’t need a stopwatch to do this, just common scientific bracketing of data with error margins based on what you DO know.

Using the distances and reasonable driving speeds and estimates of elapsed time, I previously tried to show that it was entirely consistent for Chaves taking only 2 minutes to get to an observation point where he could conceivably seen the object just before it disappeared, as Zamora said happened. (And according to Ray Stanford, what every Socorro policeman he spoke to said happened, namely Chaves DID briefly see the object going up the mountainside just before it disappeared.)

The key point here is one of false equivalency. Just because something shows up in official files does not by itself make it equally valid, particularly when the accountings are in conflict with one another, sometimes seriously so. Socorro has enough information that one can usually reliably deduce which are the better accountings, i.e. ones that are more logically and internally consistent with witness statements and objective observations and measurements.

Thus I can deduce that BB/Moody had it more right than Zamora that he was 800-900 feet away when he first spotted the object (instead of Zamora’s 150-200 yards, or 450-600’) because I visited the site and measured that the object could only have been visible at a distance from ~750-900’, otherwise terrain got in the way.

Contrarily, I can deduce that Moody’s parking spot 150 yards from the site is complete nonsense, because it makes no logical or physical sense and is completely at odds with everything Zamora said happened (taking a few steps from car; running in back of car for cover).

And the same for Moody’s Chaves arriving 6 minutes after the object took off, instead of otherwise unanimous agreement that Chaves beat all other backup out there by several minutes. This is a scenario that could NOT happen under Moody’s timeline unless the Socorro police decided to eat a few donuts first and then take a leisurely drive out there.