Spain: Cáceres Remembers Its UFO Flap (1974-1975)
Source: Planeta UFO (Argentina) and Diario HOY (Spain)
Date: 20 November 2016
Article by Sergio Lorenzo
Spain: Cáceres Remembers Its UFO Flap (1974-1975)
Yes, I admit it. I was among the 4000 people who took part in the Alerta Ovni Nacional (National UFO Skywatch) in the early hours of 8 April 1990, held at Los Barruecos in Malpartida de Cáceres. I still remember the cold, the frozen people lighting bonfires on the endless hillside. The darkness, the hundreds of parked cars, people with flashlights, the more far-sighted ones having brought blankets and food, the coming and going from food carts that must have run out of snacks, beer and mixed drinks. I remember the enthusiasts looking at the heavens through binoculars and telescopes, awaiting the arrival of visitors from Ganymede, one of the moons of Jupiter. I still can still feel the pain in the neck from scanning the firmament for so long, seeking flashes of flying saucers among the stars. The National UFO Skywatch was organized by a vibrant association of restless youths from Cáceres that dubbed itself the Centro Extremeño de Investigación Parapsicologica y Ufologica ZENE. One of them told the journalist:
"All has been made ready for their arrival. We have it all figured out. What we want is to avoid panic. It must be clear that They are not coming to start a war, as they are far more civilized than us."
It was the 90s and I have no idea what was going on then., but we had already spent 20 years gathering eyewitness accounts from people who claimed having seen UFOs and even those who claimed having been abducted by them, discussing beings enveloped in light in wonderful terms. Extremadura was one of the regions with the highest number of flying saucer sightings, according to more than one expert, alleging that the craft hid in the bottoms of reservoirs. Iker Jiménez was among the most ardent proponents of extraterrestrial visitation.
Looking for UFO sightings in this province in the Diario HOY news service is curious experience, when one sees the considerable number of people who claimed having run into them.
It was reported in the late 1960s, Florencio Moreno Moreno, a resident of Yuste, had set out on mule back to pick olives at a farm close to the famous Yuste Monastary, when he saw three flying saucers moving without making a sounds. The principal of the Marques de Canales school group, accompanied by his wife, three instructors and an 11-year-old girl, also saw a UFO in Santa Marta de Magasca.
On September 20, 1974 it was reported that an "iron-shaped light" had been reported in La Madrila. A month later, on 28 November, an entire newspaper described how Miguel Luis Lancho, son of the mayor of Malpartida de Cáceres, ran into a UFO at 11 o'clock at night after exchanging farewells with his girlfriend at the Arroyo-Malpartida train station. The girl's entire family and a neighbor also witnessed the saucer. Enrique Holguin, the young woman's father, hopped on his motorcycle and took off to get a better look at the flying saucer, but when it turned toward him, he grew frightened and returned home. The object was described as resembling "una gran mesa camilla" (a small round table used for heaters) projecting a beam of light toward the ground and festooned with lights. "It looked like something that happens in modern discotheques."
Toward the end of 1974, two couples traveling to Madrid from Cáceres by car witnessed a UFO as they left the town of Trujillo; the children riding with them thought it was the Star of the Three Kings.
In May 1975, two students from Cáceres - Juan Jesus Collado Jimenez, 19, a native of Almoharín and Francisco Javier Hernández de Cáceres, 18, from Pinofranqueado, reportedly saw a UFO shaped like "a huge custard, entirely red, burning like an ember."
In August 1975, six children and the family of Antonio Garcia Pablo saw another UFO over Plaza de Italia, described by the children as resembling "a globe of the world split in half" with three antennae protruding from its wider base. It had intermittent white, blue and red lights, coming from La Madrila.
On November 6, 1975, communications officer Victoriano Garcia Marin claimed that he and two police officers had seen a UFO while he worked at the communications office near Caceres, next to the road to Salamanca. A bluish-white object was visible for 38 minutes, and he had the impression that the object was "photographing the terrain with an enormous flash."
In January 1975 it was reported that a customer of the Monaco Bar in Aldea Moret was startled by an enormous red ball in the sky upon leaving the establishment. He went back inside to assure other parishioners, who also witnessed the sight. Further witnesses emerged in the Pinilla district.
So how did the UFO skywatch at Los Barruecos come to an end? At one in the morning, some people clasped hands to form a large circle, concentrating and mentally asking the aliens to land, trying to convince them that those present, some with more than a few drinks in them, had no intentions of harming them. Well after three in the morning, people began to leave when no alien dared to land. The only strange phenomenon I recall witnessing was photographer Salvador Guinea taking out a metal flask from his backpack in the presence of those of us at La Madrila. He'd brought it along thinking there'd be nowhere to drink at Los Barruecos. The hip flask had once been flat, but had become an impressive metal orb, a perfect sphere.
"What in blazes have you put in there?" asked a waiter at La Fontana.
"Gin and Coca-Cola."
"How could you do such a thing, dear boy? Don't you know how weird Coca-Cola is? No one knows what's in it, and it can even take the rust off metal."
I haven't had Coca-Cola since then...the beverage of aliens.
[Translation (c) 2016 S. Corrales IHU with thanks to Guillermo Gimenez and Sergio Lorenzo]