Ramey Says Excitement is Not Justified General
Ramey Says Disk is Weather Balloon
Fort Worth, Texas, July 9 (AP) An examination by the army revealed last night that mysterious objects found on a lonely New Mexico ranch was a harmless high-altitude weather balloon - not a grounded flying disk. Excitement was high until Brig. Gen. Roger M. Ramey, commander of the Eighth air forces with headquarters here cleared up the mystery.
The bundle of tinfoil, broken wood beams and rubber remnants of a balloon were sent here yesterday by army air transport in the wake of reports that it was a flying disk.
But the general said the objects were the crushed remains of a ray wind target used to determine the direction and velocity of winds at high altitudes.
Warrant Officer Irving Newton, forecaster at the army air forces weather station here said, "we use them because they go much higher than the eye can see."
The weather balloon was found several days ago near the center of New Mexico by Rancher W. W. Brazel. He said he didn't think much about it until he went into Corona, N. M., last Saturday and heard the flying disk reports.
He returned to his ranch, 85 miles northwest of Roswell, and recovered the wreckage of the balloon, which he had placed under some brush.
Then Brazel hurried back to Roswell, where he reported his find to the sheriff's office.
The sheriff called the Roswell air field and Maj. Jesse A. Marcel, 509th bomb group intelligence officer was assigned to the case.
Col. William H. Blanchard, commanding officer of the bomb group, reported the find to General Ramey and the object was flown immediately to the army air field here.
Ramey went on the air here last night to announce the New Mexico discovery was not a flying disk.
Newton said that when rigged up, the instrument "looks like a six-pointed star, is sivery in appearance and rises in the air like a kite."
In Roswell, the discovery set off a flurry of excitement.
Sheriff George Wicox's telephone lines were jammed. Three calls came from England, one of them from The London Daily Mail, he said.
A public relations officer here said the balloon was in his office "and it'll probably stay right there."
Newton, who made the examination, said some 80 weather stations in the U. S. were using that type of balloon and that it could have come from any of them.
He said he had sent up identical balloons during the invasion of Okinawa to determine ballistics information for heavy guns.