Because of the latest controversy surrounding the Travis Walton abduction, I reached out to Mike Rogers, who was there when the UFO was seen. He had been an important voice in the sighting report for more than four decades. You can listen to my interview with him here:
We spent the first interview discussing the whole story from the moment that Rogers and Walton saw the UFO and the men with them, Steve Pierce, Allen Dalis, John Goulette, Ken Peterson, and Dwayne Smith, until they returned to look for Walton after the abduction. It is the story as it has been told many times but here, we hear it from one of the men who was there in 1975. We covered the search for Walton and the law enforcement reaction to the story. I wanted to cover all this for everyone to have, well, the proper perspective on this classic UFO case.
I will note here, because Rogers said it several times, that no one saw Walton abducted. They all saw the craft, but they had fled after Walton had been struck by the beam. Rogers said that he hadn’t seen the beam, but had seen Walton flying through the air.
As the hour expired, we talked about the lie detector tests. Rogers said something about a first test in California but he didn’t know the results or the details. There was a second test, apparently arranged by Jim and Coral Lorenzen of APRO for those at the National Enquirer, which Walton failed. Rogers wasn’t clear if this was the California test, or there had been an earlier test. I suspect that they are the same or the one in California never happened.
We came back to the lie detector tests. Walton passed a second one (third?) arranged by the Lorenzens. It seems they rejected the first test(s) because they had been given too soon after Walton’s return. That his shock at the events might have skewed the results and frankly, I’m willing to accept that explanation. The Lorenzens are to be faulted because they denied the first failed test until Philip Klass learned about it. This, of course, is not a reflection on Walton.
In 1993, Jerry Black, a somewhat disinterested third party, arranged still another lie detector test for Walton. This one seems to have been conducted without a particular bias, and Walton passed it.
We stayed with the lie detector test question a little longer. A number of years ago, Walton appeared on a show called, Moment of Truth. He was asked if he had been abducted by a UFO and he answered, “Yes.” The polygrapher determined that his answer was a lie.
According to Rogers, Steve Pierce, who was there, at the taping of the show, changed his mind about the Walton abduction. In fact, and according to Rogers, of all the men who were there in 1975, apparently only John Goulette still believes that abduction part of the story. I must note here that two of the men who were there in 1975 have since died.
I asked Rogers his reaction to that test but he kept talking about the money that Walton and others had earned at the show. The answer I finally got was that Rogers believed the UFO sighting because he had been there and seen the UFO, but he said, again, that no one actually saw Walton abducted.
had seemed, for years, that the men presented a solid front, with no one
breaking ranks. Steve Pierce had been pressed by Philip Klass to admit it was a
hoax for ten thousand dollars. Pierce’s friends suggested that if he took the
money, he would be bruised and he’d spend it alone (Yes, there is a quote to
that effect in the interview). I saw that as something of a threat. I mentioned
pressure from both sides to get Pierce to do what they wanted. You can read my
interview with Pierce that covers this point here:
And if you scroll down in the following story, you’ll find a little additional information. You can read it here:
We also talked about the transcript going around in which Rogers is quoted as saying that the story was a hoax. I asked about this and Rogers said that he never said anything like that. He said that the audio interview he’d had with Ryan Gordon had been manipulated to change the meaning. I have not heard the interview but have seen the transcript. That’s something that Rogers and Gordon will have to work out.
What comes out of these two hours with Mike Rogers is that the once solid wall for the Walton abduction is not as solid as it once was. Rogers was somewhat evasive when I asked specific questions about the reality of the abduction and if he believed that Walton had been abducted. He repeated that he had seen the UFO but that no one saw Walton abducted. Is there something that he’s not telling us? You can, quite naturally, listen to the interview and decide for yourself but I will say, this turned somewhat troubling for me.
Next up is Robert Sheaffer. We’ll talk about UFO skepticism and maybe touch his opinion of the Walton abduction.