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The 1954 French flap:

The index page for the 1954 French flap section of this website is here.

October 11, 1954, Lacanche, Côte-d'Or:

Reference number for this case: 11-oct-54-Lacanche. Thank you for including this reference number in any correspondence with me regarding this case.

Summary:

According to the 1958 book by Aimé Michel, who gives no source, on October 11, 1954, around 04:15 a.m., Mr. Labonde, from Epignac-les-Mines, was driving on the departmental road 104 in the Côte-Or between Thury and Champignolles, when leaving the woods of Vernusse, he noticed a curious reddish luminosity floating in the darkness of the car.

He glanced around to find the source, and discovered that a kind of red luminous globe that seemed to be about 2 meters wide followed his car at a distance of about 25 meters.

As he worried, he accelerated and slowed down, and the object came closer. When he reached Champignolles, Mr. Labonde took the departmental road 14 leading to Lacanche, and accelerated thoroughly, and the object then did the same, until the arrival in Lacanche where the object deviated, took altitude and disappeared.

Michel noted that the light scattered inside the car, the variation of the distance between the car and the object, the maneuvers and the flight just before the entry of the village plead against the idea that it would have been a reflection. But neither he nor others have thought it could have been the moon.

In the 1960s, Jacques Vallée gave a source: the newspaper L'Aurore for October 13, 1954.

Reports:

[Ref. aml1:] AIME MICHEL:

Aimé Michel notes that during the short moment separating the cases of Fonfrède and of Clamecy, at 04:15 a.m., Mr. Labonde, originating from Epignac-les-Mines, was driving on the secondary road 104 in Côte-d'Or between the villages of Thury and Champignolles, when, as he came out of the wood of Vernusse, he noticed a curious reddish luminosity floating in the darkness of his car.

Mr. Lalonde threw a circular glance to find the source of it, and discovered that a kind of luminous red globe which seemed to be about two meters broad followed its car at a distance of approximately twenty-five meters.

As it worried him, he accelerated, then slowed down, and the object still approached. When he arrived at the height of Champignolles, Mr. Labonde took the secondary road 14 leading towards Lacanche, and accelerated thoroughly; the object did the same, until the arrival at Lacanche where the object deviated, took altitude and disappeared.

Michel notes that the light spreading inside the car, the variation of the distance between the car and the object, the manoeuvers and the take-off right before the entry of the village plead against the idea that that it could have been a reflection.

Aimé Michel put a sighting location at Vernusse on October 11, 1954, on a map supposed to demonstrate cases are lined up:

Map by Aimé Michel

[Ref. jve5:] JACQUES VALLEE:

301 -004.56990 47.07630 11 10 1954 04 20 1 (LACANCHE W.BEAUNE) F 001133 C *269

[Ref. jve1:] JACQUES VALLEE:

October 11, 1954, 04:20, Lacanche (France):

Mr. Labonde was driving at the intersection of D14 and D104 when he was followed by a sort of luminous globe surrounded with a reddish glow, about 2 m in size. It stayed within 25 m of the car. (L'Aurore, 13 oct. 1954).

[Ref. jve2:] JACQUES VALLEE:

The author indicates that on October 11, 1954, in Lacanche in the Côte-d'Or, Mr. Labonde, who drove his car, was followed by a kind of luminous sphere which was surrounded of a strange reddish gleam of approximately 2 meters of size.

[Ref. prn1:] PETER ROGERSON - "INTCAT":

408 11 October 1954 0420 hrs

LACANCHE (FRANCE). M. Labonde was driving at the intersection of Dl4 & Dl04 when he was followed by a luminous globe surrounded by a reddish glow, about 2m diameter. It stayed within 25m of the car until he reached the village, where the object swerved, climbed & disappeared. (M233; L'Aurore 13 Oct 54; Michel II, 158)

[Ref. fru1:] MICHEL FIGUET AND JEAN-LOUIS RUCHON:

The two authors indicate that in Lacanche in the department of Côte-d'Or, on October 11, 1954 at 04:20 in the morning, a person was driving his vehicle to the intersection of the secondary roads D14 and D104, when he was followed by a kind of luminous sphere surrounded by a reddish incandescent light of pproximately two meters in diameter which remained at a distance of 25 meters of his car.

The authors give as sources case 233 of the Vallée catalogue, Aimé Michel in "A propos des S.V." page 197, and l'Aurore for October 13, 1954.

[Ref. via1:] "VIMANA 21" UFOLOGY BULLETIN:

54 10 11 / LACANCHE / 4:20 / CE1 / P /

The witness who drove by car on the D14 was followed by a luminous globe. The object was about 2m in diameter and was flying at 25m altitude. The color was reddish incandescent.

(Source: Alerte dans le ciel, Ch. Garreau, p. 168)

[Ref. mft1:] MICHEL FIGUET:

This ufologist noted:

CASE Nr CLASSIFICATION DATE HOUR PLACE ZIP CODE CREDIBILITY SOURCE
174 CE0 11 10 1954 04.20 Lacanche 21230 B6 NI[=Non Identified]-P, OVNI: p. 148

[Ref. lhh1:] LARRY HATCH - "*U* COMPUTER DATABASE":

4062: 1954/10/11 04:20 12 4:33:40 E 47:04:40 N 3333 WEU FRN CDO 6:8

LACANCHE,FR:D14/D104:SAME 2M RED GLOW ORB FOLLOWS CAR HERE

Ref# 8 VALLEE,Jacques: PASSPORT TO MAGONIA. Case No. 233 : FARMLANDS

Larry Hatch mistakenly recorded the case twice:

4061: 1954/10/11 04:10 10 4:33:00 E 46:52:40 N 3333 WEU FRN CDO 8:6

D104/VERNUSSE,FR:90cm RED GLOBE FOLOS CAR/TURNS:^^ nr LACANCHE:/r138#9

Ref# 49 MICHEL,Aime: FS & STRAIGHT LINE TH: Page No. 158 : FARMLANDS

[Ref. goe1:] GODELIEVE VAN OVERMEIRE:

Godelieve van Overmeire indicates that on October 11, 1954 at 04:20 in Lacanche, Mr. Labonde was driving at the intersection of D14 and D104 in France when he was followed by a sort of luminous globe surrounded with a reddish glow, about two meters in size. It stayed within 25 meters of his car.

The source is indicated as Jacques Vallee, Passport to Magonia: A Century of Landings, p. 224.

[Ref. djn1:] DONALD JOHNSON:

Donald Johnson indicates that on October 11, 1954 at 04:20 in Lacanche, Mr. Labonde was driving at the intersection of D14 and D104 in France when he was followed by a sort of luminous globe surrounded with a reddish glow, about two meters in size. It stayed within 25 meters of his car.

The source is indicated as Jacques Vallee, Passport to Magonia: A Century of Landings, p. 224.

[Ref. jbu1:] JEROME BEAU:

Jérôme Beau indicates that on October 11, 1954, at 04:20 in Lacanche, Mr. Labonde was driving at the intersection of D14 and D104 in France when he was followed by a sort of luminous globe surrounded with a reddish glow, about two meters in size. It stayed within 25 meters of his car.

Jérôme Beau indicates that the source is "L'Aurore, October 13, 1954".

[Ref. mps1:] MICHEL PADRINES:

Michel Padrines indicates that on October 11, 1954, at 04:20 in Lacanche, Mr. Labonde was driving at the intersection of D14 and D104 in France when he was followed by a sort of luminous globe surrounded with a reddish glow, about two meters in size. It stayed within 25 meters of his car.

Michel Padrines indicates that the source is "L'Aurore, October 13, 1954".

[Ref. lc1:] LUC CHASTAN:

Luc Chastan indicates that in the Côte d'Or on October 11, 1954, at 04:20 in Lacanche, Mr. Labonde was driving at the intersection of D14 and D104 in France when he was followed by a sort of luminous globe surrounded with a reddish glow, about two meters in size: which stayed within 25 meters of his car.

Luc Chastan indicates that the source is "Ovni, Premier dossier complet... by Figuet M./ Ruchon J.L. ** Alain Lefeuvre pub. 1979".

[Ref. uda1:] "UFODNA" WEBSITE:

The website indicates that on 11 October 1954 at 04:20 in Lacanche, France, a "sort of luminous globe surrounded with a reddish glow, two meters in size, was seen. Mr. Labonde was driving at the intersection of D14 and D104 when he was followed by a sort of luminous globe surrounded with a reddish glow, about two meters in size. It stayed within 25 meters of the car."

The website adds that an "object was observed from a car. One red ball, about 5 feet across, was observed by one male witness on a farm."

The sources are indicated as "Michel, Aime, Flying Saucers and the Straight-Line Mystery, S. G. Phillips, New York, 1958; Bowen, Charles, The Humanoids: FSR Special Edition No. 1, FSR, London, 1966; Vallee, Jacques, Computerized Catalog (N = 3073); Vallee, Jacques, Challenge to Science: The UFO Enigma, Henry Regnery, Chicago, 1966; Vallee, Jacques, A Century of Landings (N = 923) (in JVallee04), Chicago, 1969; Schoenherr, Luis, Computerized Catalog (N = 3173); Hatch, Larry, *U* computer database, Author, Redwood City, 2002."

[Ref. nip1:] "THE NICAP WEBSITE":

*Oct. 11, 1954 - At 4:20 a.m. in Lacanche, Côte-d'or, France Mr. Labonde was driving at the intersection of D14 and D104 when he was followed by a sort of luminous globe surrounded with a reddish glow, about two meters in size. It stayed within 25 meters of his car. (Sources: Aime Michel, Flying Saucers and the Straight Line Mystery, p. 158; Jacques Vallee, Passport to Magonia: A Century of Landings, p. 224, case # 233).

[Ref. ubk1:] "UFO-DATENBANK":

This database recorded this case 9 times instead of once:

Case Nr. New case Nr. Investigator Date of observation Zip Place of observation Country of observation Hour of observation Classification Comments Identification
19541011 11.10.1954 Lacanche France
19541011 11.10.1954 Lacanche France CE I
19541011 11.10.1954 Lacanche France CE I
19541011 11.10.1954 Lacanche France CE I
19541011 11.10.1954 Lacanche France CE I
19541011 11.10.1954 Lacanche France CE I
19541011 11.10.1954 Champignolles France
19541011 11.10.1954 Vernusse Foret France
19541011 11.10.1954 Vernusse France CE I

[Ref. prn2:] PETER ROGERSON - "INTCAT":

October 11 1954. 0420hrs.

VERNUSSE (ALLIER : FRANCE)

Mr Labonde was driving between Thury and Champignolles on Rte D 104, when, as he left the Vernusse woods, his car was lit by a reddish glow. Glancing round he saw that a luminous crimson globe almost 1.8m in diameter was following his car at a distance of about 25m. It paced him as he speeded, slowed and turned into Rt D 14, until he reached Lacanche, where it swerved and climbed up in the sky to disappear.

Explanations:

This is one of those cases that immediately make me think a a misinterpretation of the Moon.

Lacanche is located at 47° 04' 31'' North, 4° 33' 31'' East. It would have occurred on October 11, 1954, around 4:15 in the morning.

I find that the moon was indeed visible, at the azimuth 260° 46' 49.6'' (roughly to the East), the low elevation of 14° 49' 22.9'', and it was a full moon.

It must have been a "Red Moon", described thus as "incandescent reddish" by the witness. Would it not have been a red moon, he would probably have recognized it for what it was.

Aimé Michel indicates that the witness was driving "on the departmental road 104 in the Côte-d'Or between Thury and Champignolles". He comes out of the wood of Vernusse when he sees the thing for the first time (spot 1). This coincides with the moon at 260°; it is indeed almost exactly behind him; it "follows" him, he thinks. Arrived at the height of Champignolles, he takes the D14 leading to Lacanche (spot 2). He turns to the left.

On arrival in Lacanche, the road turns a little to the right, then a little to the left, then frankly to the right in the entrance to Lacanche. It is said that the object "deviates" there, an illusion quite understandable in this turn. It takes altitude and disappears. At the entrance to Lacanche, the D14 seems to be a bit downhill and uphill; which gives the illusion of the change of altitude of the ball. And once in Lacanche, the witness could no longer see the ball, the houses hid it. Since he thought that the ball was only 25 meters behind him, he logically thought it must have "disappeared".

And there is something else. In the case of Fonfrède, in the Loire, 135 km further south, at the same hour or almost, I think a meteor was observed. The witness in Lacanche could have even seen this meteor; which would have illuminated his car, and then further increased his confusion. He could have first seen the meteor clearly moving, then think that the red moon was the same "object" starting to follow. Or maybe the meteor was the object which, at the end of the sighting, rose and disappeared.

Keywords:

(These keywords are only to help queries and are not implying anything.)

Lacanche, Côte-d'Or, Labonde, road, car, vehicle, globe, luminous, sphere, incandescent, fiery, red

Sources:

[----] indicates sources which I have not yet checked.

Document history:

Version: Created/Changed by: Date: Change Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross April 7, 2003 First published.
1.0 Patrick Gross December 17, 2008 Conversion from HTML to XHTML Strict. First formal version. Additions [djn1], [jbu1], [goe1], [mps1].
1.1 Patrick Gross December 20, 2008 Addition [uda1].
1.2 Patrick Gross June 28, 2010 Addition [jve5].
1.3 Patrick Gross October 18, 2014 Addition [nip1].
1.4 Patrick Gross February 21, 2017 Addition [ubk1].
1.5 Patrick Gross April 29, 2019 Additions [prn1], [mft1], [via1], [lhh1], Summary. Explanations changed, were "Not looked for yet."
1.6 Patrick Gross September 11, 2019 Addition [prn2].

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This page was last updated on September 11, 2019.