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ACUFO:

ACUFO is my comprehensive catalog of cases of encounters between aircraft and UFOs, whether they are "explained" or "unexplained".

The ACUFO catalog is made of case files with a case number, summary, quantitative information (date, location, number of witnesses...), classifications, all sources mentioning the case with their references, a discussion of the case in order to evaluate its causes, and a history of the changes made to the file.

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In the South Atlantic Ocean, in 1944:

Case number:

ACUFO-1944-00-00-SOUTHATLANTIC-1

Summary:

Jan Aldrich, US ufologist who set up the rich "Project 1947" historical ufology Website, published there, in the 2000's, an extract of an article by the newspaper The Town Talk, of Alexandria, Louisiana, USA, for April 20, 1980.

The article spoke of one Kent Courtney, said to be a former US Army Air Force pilot and now an art gallery owner, passiante with UFO reports, for the reason that himself said to have met UFOs.

His sighting reportedly occurred in 1944 as he was piloting a transport plane over the South Atlantic, from Brazil to Africa, at about 10,000 feet altitude. It was a night flight, scheduled to arrive in Africa at dawn. Courtney recalled that it was dark but the four cockpit pilots could see the horizon in the distance. He told:

"Then this bright pair of lights showed up in front of us. These lights were too far to be the lights of an airplane."

The lights sped rapidly toward the plane's nose, separated, and went around just before reaching the plane. He told:

"We were just aghast and all of a sudden they were coming up from behind. They flew alongside of us for four or five minutes. They were within a city block of us."

He said he did not see a detailed craft but, bright yellowish lights from some type of craft.

When the plane touched down in Africa, Courtney and the other pilots reported the sighting, and, he told, they were advised by the Army and Air Force to keep it to themselves.

Data:

Temporal data:

Date: 1944
Time: Night.
Duration: 5 minutes.
First known report date: 1980
Reporting delay: 4 decades.

Geographical data:

Country: Over the South Atlantic Ocean.
State/Department:
City:

Witnesses data:

Number of alleged witnesses: 4
Number of known witnesses: 1
Number of named witnesses: 1

Ufology data:

Reporting channel: Statements to a newspaper.
Visibility conditions: Night.
UFO observed: Yes.
UFO arrival observed: Yes.
UFO departure observed: Yes.
UFO action: Came to the front of the plane, split, turn, follow plane, depart.
Witnesses action:
Photographs: No.
Sketch(s) by witness(es): No.
Sketch(es) approved by witness(es): No.
Witness(es) feelings: Stunned.
Witnesses interpretation: Extraterrestrial craft.

Classifications:

Sensors: [X] Visual: 4.
[ ] Airborne radar:
[ ] Directional ground radar:
[ ] Height finder ground radar:
[ ] Photo:
[ ] Film/video:
[ ] EM Effects:
[ ] Failures:
[ ] Damages:
Hynek: NL
Armed / unarmed: Unarmed.
Reliability 1-3: 1
Strangeness 1-3: 3
ACUFO: Possible extraterrestrial visitors, unknown credibility

Sources:

[Ref. prt1:] JAN ALDRICH - "PROJECT 1947":

Alexandria, Louisiana Daily Town Talk - 20 April, 1980

UFO Sightings Aren't That Unusual; Several in Area Have Seen Them

By Richard Sharkey, Town Talk Staff Writer

(Extract:)

...Kent Courtney, 1413 Texas Ave., said he saw a UFO in 1944. Since that time he's discovered that about one of every 20 persons he told has in turn told him of their own UFO encounter.

...Courtney spotted a UFO while he was piloting a transatlantic flight from Brazil to Africa during World War II.

"I had no interest in UFOs until a couple of them came and flew alongside of us," Courtney explained.

All of that changed after the sighting. Courtney, now an art gallery owner, became an avid researcher of information related to UFOs and extraterrestrial happenings.

During the 1960s, Courtney compiled a UFO scrapbook and subscribed to a newspaper clipping service to get his hands on everything reported about UFOs. At the time he was a syndicated radio announcer and included UFO reports as a regular part of his broadcasts.

He said many World War II pilots reported seeing "bogies" or UFOs during flights.

"Pilots were amazed these little fellows were only four, five, and six feet across and they'd fly on the wingtip," Courtney said.

"Some of them traveled as fast as 1,000 miles an hour, an unheard of speed at the time," he said. "Whatever they are..whoever they are, they have discovered space travel that we don't know yet."

Courtney's sighting occurred in 1944 while he was a (sic) flying a transport place over the South Atlantic at about 10,000 feet altitude.

It was a night flight. "We were scheduled to arrive in Africa at dawn," Courtney recalled. It was dark but the four cockpit pilots could see the horizon in the distance.

"Then this bright pair of lights showed up in front of us. These lights were too far to be the lights of an airplane," he said.

The lights sped rapidly toward the plane's nose but separated and went around just before it reached his plane, he said.

"We were just aghast and all of a sudden they were coming up from behind," Courtney said. "They flew alongside of us for four or five minutes. They were within a city block of us."

He said he didn't see a detail craft but saw bright yellowish lights from some type of craft.

When the plane touched down in Africa, Courtney and the other pilots reported the sighting.

"We were advised by the Army and Air Force to keep it to ourselves," Courtney noted.

"The official view of the Air Force was to quell the investigation, to stop it cold." He said he talked with numerous World War II pilots who had seen UFOs.

Courtney isn't naive enough to believe every UFO sighting is authentic. "For every authentic report, there would be some guys trying to get in on the publicity bandwagon."

Asked his theory on why UFOs have never made contact with government officials, Courtney said the extraterrestrial beings are probably superior and would have nothing to gain from such an encounter.

"They are observing a lesser breed." Courtney said. "Why should they bother?"

[Ref. prt4:] JAN ALDRICH - "PROJECT 1947":

N - 1944 - Night, South Atlantic

Military transport, 4 pilots, 2 bright lights came toward the plane, separated and went around the plane, then they turned and flew along side the aircraft for four or five minutes. (Alexandria, LA, TOWN TALK 20 April 1980.)

[Ref. dwn2:] DOMINIQUE WEINSTEIN:

Case 27

1944

South Atlantic

At night, four pilots of military Air transport aircraft observed two bright lights wich came toward the plane, seperated and went around the aircraft, then turned and flew along side for 4-5 minutes.

Source: Project 1947, Jan Aldrich

[Ref. fjp1:] FRANK JOSEPH:

The author says that Kent Courtney reported that while ferrying a transport plane from Brazil to Morocco, in February 1943, at ten thousand feet over the South Atlantic, several lights flew at him head-on, narrowly avoiding a collision, then turned back to buzz his aircraft before speeding away into the night. After landing safely in Casablanca, he made his report, but "We were advised by the Army and Air Force to keep it to ourselves," the former USAAF captain told Alexandria, Louisiana's Daily Town Talk. "The official view of the Air Force was to quell the investigation, to stop it cold." Courtney "talked with numerous World War II pilots who had seen UFOs."

Aircraft information:

The only information is that it was a military transport plane; it was certainly not armed, especially since it was flying far from the combat zones.

The most likely aircraft is the Douglas DC-4 "Skymaster", whose range allowed the indicated Ocean crossing.

Discussion:

The credibility of the case can obviously be questioned, due to lack of proof or at least confirmation of the event by military reports.

The observation is very similar to many of the other observations from aircraft made from 1943 to 1945.

Evaluation:

Possible extraterrestrial visitors, unknown credibility.

Sources references:

* = Source is available to me.
? = Source I am told about but could not get so far. Help needed.

File history:

Authoring:

Main author: Patrick Gross
Contributors: None
Reviewers: None
Editor: Patrick Gross

Changes history:

Version: Create/changed by: Date: Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross October 12, 2023 Creation, [prt1], [prt4], [dwn2], [fjp1].
1.0 Patrick Gross October 12, 2023 First published.

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This page was last updated on October 12, 2023.