The Perspective of Capt. Kimball  




Lorenzo Kent Kimball
(Editor's Note:  Lorenzo Kimball passed away in June, 1999.  His web site, from where the following text was obtained, has since been taken down.)

In early July, 1947 there occurred near Roswell, New Mexico what one researcher has described as a "cataclysmic event." A "flying saucer" reportedly crashed on the Foster Ranch near Corona, New Mexico. Debris from the crash site was found by William "Mac" Brazel, the ranch foreman. Brazel took samples of the debris to the Chavez County Sheriffs Office where the Country Sheriff, George Wilcox suggested that Brazel contact the Base Intelligence Officer, Major Jesse Marcel, at Roswell Army Air Field. Under the direction of Colonel William H. Blanchard, Commanding Officer of the 509th Bomb Group at Roswell Army Air Field, Major Marcel and CIC Agent Sheridan Cavitt accompanied Mac Brazel to the Foster ranch to recover some of the debris, which they did. The debris was taken to the office of Colonel Blanchard and under orders from higher authority some of the materiel was flown to 8th Air Force Headquarters, Carswell Army Air Field, Ft. Worth, Texas where it was announced that the debris was not from a "flying disc" but that it was the remnants of a weather balloon. (See comments below about Colonel Blanchard)

Several books have been published by UFO researchers about the "Roswell Incident" claiming that what happened was in reality a crash of an extraterrestrial spacecraft, that alien remains were recovered and that the U.S. military covered up the whole affair. There have been a spate of TV shows and movies supporting this premise. As a consequence, this has been accepted as fact by popular opinion.

I have read two books that support this thesis. Both books have received considerable notoriety and circulation. they are:

Crash At Corona: The U.S. Military Retrieval and Cover-up of a UFO by Stanton T. Friedman and Don Berliner, New York: Paragon House, 1992.

The testimony of people closely associated with the Roswell Incident based on this book can by found at this site:

(Note: Stanton T. Friedman is a nuclear physicist who has lectured nationally and internationally on UFOs and has appeared on numerous television programs, including Nightline and Unsolved Mysteries. He has been acknowledged as one of the first investigators of the Roswell Incident.)

The Truth About the UFO Crash at Roswell by Kevin D. Randle & Donald R. Schmitt, New York: Avon Books, 1994.

The Roswell Resource Center has considerable information and discussion of the incident as well as a discussion of the Ray Santilli Alien autopsy film with clips from the film. In 1995 I was interviewed by a Japanese Documentary Film Company about the Alien autopsy film. After viewing the film I told the interviewer that the scenes of the autopsy in no way resembled any military operating room suite with which I was familiar. As a member of the 8th Air Force Inspector General Team from 1953 to 1957 I inspected over a dozen U.S. Air Force medical facilities, including Roswell AFB and Carswell AFB, Ft. Worth, Texas and I saw no such facility. No one apparently is sure where the autopsy took place but I am reasonably sure it was NOT in an AF medical facility.

Kent Jeffrey has summarized the incident in his article, Roswell: The Whole Story.

Jeffrey has done considerable research and was responsible for the so-called International Roswell Initiative to uncover the alleged cover-up of the event with the implication that there was indeed a crash of an extraterrestrial craft. His further research, which included numerous interviews with former members of the 509th Bomb Group, has led him to conclude otherwise. He has prepared a comprehensive Anatomy of a Myth which is a full explanation of why he changed his mind.

Kal K. Korff has written a major work, The Roswell UFO Crash: What They Don't Want You to Know (New York: Prometheus Books, 1997) which contains facts and analyses not previously published about the incident. He convincingly exposes the inconsistencies and flaws in nearly all of the major publications about the event.

The July/August issue of the Skeptical Inquirer: The Magazine for Science and Reason, published by the Committee for the Scientific Investigation of the Paranormal (CSICOP) includes excerpts from the Korff book.

See below my comments on the Philip J. Klass book, The Real Roswell Crashed-Coverup,(New York: Prometheus Books, 1997)

Other web sites with information on the incident are:

The J. Allen Hynek Center for UFO Studies; The International UFO Museum and Research Center; UFOlogy Society International and a site in Roswell, New Mexico.

In 1947 I was a Captain, U.S. Army (Medical Administrative Corps) assigned to Squadron M (Base Hospital), 509th Bomb Group at Roswell Army Air Base. My primary duty was Medical Supply Officer for the Base Hospital. You would think that with all of the books that have been written, TV shows fictionalizing the incident, and the coverage the summer of 1997 in the media (major articles in the New York Times, cover stories in Time Magazine and Popular Science) that there must have been a great furor at the Base at that time (July 1947). To the contrary, life went on as usual. Most of the medical staff spent their time at the Officer's Club swimming pool every afternoon after duty hours. The biggest excitement was the cut-throat hearts game in the BOQ and an intense bingo, bango bungo golf game at the local nine hole golf course for a nickel a point!! There was absolutely NO unusual activity on the Base, no base alerts, no hysteria, no panic in July 1947. Life went on as usual.

(See additional comments below concerning the 8th Air Force football team)

In fact, the first I heard of this "cataclysmic event" was in the Fall of 1992 when I was called by Stanton Friedman to see if I could verify any of the activities that allegedly occurred at the Base Hospital concerning the recovery of alien remains. Friedman had found my name and picture in the 1947 RAAF Yearbook. My wife, Jane (who was with me in Roswell and who worked on the base), and I decided we had better try and find out what had supposedly happened. We did a library search and later obtained the Friedman/Berliner book and the Randle/Schmitt book cited above. What we have found is that much of what is in these books concerning the Base Hospital is incorrect and more fiction than fact.

In Crash at Corona, Glenn Dennis, a young mortician employed by the Ballard Funeral Home in Roswell, is reported as having brought an injured GI "to the base infirmary, which was in the same building as the hospital and mortuary." (p.116) Dennis is also quoted as saying he had received numerous calls from the Roswell AAF mortuary officer concerning sealed caskets . One of the photographs following p. 70 is captioned: "Rear of the hospital at Roswell Army Air Field. It was here that Glenn Dennis parked and walked in while small humanoid bodies were being prepared for shipment." Dennis, in his statements, tells of discussions with a young nurse, later identified as Naomi Maria Selff, who told him (Dennis) details about "three little bodies" being autopsied at the Base Hospital.


  1. There was no mortuary on the Base. There was no AAF mortuary officer with such an assignment. As Medical Supply Officer I was responsible for obtaining, maintaining and issuing all supplies and equipment for the Base Hospital and any functions of a mortuary officer would have been within my responsibilities. I never met Glenn Dennis and I don't recall ever calling him for anything.
  2. There was no nurse named Naomi Maria Selff assigned to the Base Hospital during the period I was assigned there (1946-1948). I was well acquainted with all five nurses assigned during this time and none of them anywhere near fit Dennis' description of the nurse he knew. Further research by UFO researcher Victor Golubic has determined that no nurse by that name was ever commissioned in the U.S. Army or assigned to the Army Air Force.
  3. The photograph cited above is of a two story brick structure. The entire hospital complex was a World War II cantonment type, one-story, wooden frame structure. There were NO two story buildings and NO brick structures in the complex.

In their book, The Truth About the UFO Crash at Roswell, Randle and Schmitt state that a Major Jesse B. Johnson, Squadron M, 509th Bomb Group, (Base Hospital), was the base pathologist, who assisted in a preliminary autopsies on alien bodies. In their footnotes to Chapter 10, Randle & Schmitt claim that "Johnson's position as a pathologist has been verified by a number of former members of the 509th Bomb Group {and} verified by the 509th yearbook and the RAAF unit history."


  1. There was a physician named Jesse B. Johnson assigned to the Base Hospital. However, he was a 1st Lt., not a Major, and he was a radiologist, not a pathologist. He had no training as a pathologist and would have been the last member of the medical staff to have performed any autopsy on a human much less an alien!! He is identified as a 1st Lt in the 509th Yearbook.

  2. After I learned of these assertions, I called Doctor Jack Comstock, who, as a Major, was the Hospital Commander in 1947, and in 1995 was living in retirement in Boulder, Colorado. I asked him if he recalled any such events occurring in July of 1947 and he said absolutely not. When I told him that Jesse B. was supposed to have conducted a preliminary autopsy on alien bodies, he had a hard time stopping laughing - his response was: PREPOSTEROUS!!

  3. Major Comstock lived in the Hospital BOQ, located in the hospital complex. Any unusual activity was immediately reported to him by members of the medical and nursing staff. He told me (this was in 1995 prior to his death in February 1996) that NOTHING of this nature occurred in July 1947 at the Base Hospital.


From first-hand knowledge, I am reasonably certain that no alien bodies were brought to the Base Hospital in July 1947 where "preliminary autopsies" were supposedly conducted. There was no nurse by the name of Naomi Maria Selff ever assigned to Squadron M, 509th Bomb Group. The statements made by Glenn Dennis are not credible. The accounts in the Randle/Schmitt book concerning Jesse B. Johnson are fiction.


One of my problems with all of the literature I have read on the subject is that none of the researchers, with perhaps the exception of Kent Jeffrey in his Anatomy of a Myth, have paid any attention to the activities at Roswell Army Air Field during the summer and fall of 1947, apparently on the assumption we were all involved with the "crash."

In fact, during the late summer and fall of 1947, in addition to routine training, Roswell AAF became the home of an 8th Air Force football team. Lt. Al Nemetz, an All-American, who played tackle on the 1945-46 Army National Championship team at West Point, was assigned to the 509th Bomb Group. Colonel Blanchard asked him if he would coach an 8th AF football team if he could get General Roger Ramey's approval to form such a team. Briefly, Al said "yes," General Ramey approved and a team was organized. Players were recruited from all 8th AF units and those with high school or college football experience were sent to RAAF on temporary duty. (Players included Lts Bobby Dobbs and Max Minor who also played on the West Point National Championship team) The team practiced most of the summer and games were scheduled. Games were played against teams from Ft. Bliss, Randolph AAF, played at TCU's Farrington Field in Fort Worth, Texas (the Randolph team included All-Americans Doc Blanchard and Arnold Tucker from the National Champions), games in Tucson, Denver(Lowry AAF), and Los Alamos. We even flew at team in from Carrol College, Minnesota for a game in Roswell. Games in Roswell were played on the local high school field. The team included officers and enlisted men from various bases and units. Roswell, New Mexico was then a small community and rather isolated and Colonel Blanchard did this as morale effort.

It is inconceivable that such an undertaking would have taken place if there was the remote possibilty that a "cataclytic event" had occurred which could have been perceived as a threat to national security.

I know all of this first hand as Colonel Blanchard asked me to be the "Business Manager" for the team, in addition to my other duties at the Base Hospital. As such, I scheduled all games, arranged for the housing, feeding and equipment for the team, and scheduled all travel arrangements. There is a picture of the entire team in the 1947 RAAF Yearbook. Here is a shot of Lt Al Nemetz and others on the sideline during a game in Roswell, New Mexico.

[Picture not included here]

I got to know General Blanchard very well as an officer under his command at Roswell AAF and with the 7th Air Division. He was, as his record surely reflects, an outstanding officer, who was highly respected. According to Lt. Haut's testimony about the event, Colonel Blanchard ordered him to issue a press release announcing that a "flying disk" have been recovered. While I am sure this is how Lt. Haut remembers it, I would argue that this not the action that a responsible commander would have taken given the importance of such a discovery. He would have first reported the fact to his commander, General Ramey, at Hq, 8th Air Force. Also, if Colonel Blanchard had believed that this "finding" was of such magnitude it is highly unlikely that he would have delegated the responsibility of transporting the debris to others. He would probably done so himself. And he surely would have avoided any publicity until he knew what he was dealing with.

Those of us who served in the 509th Bomb Group at the time had considerable pride in our unit and respected our commanders. I believe we would have acted responsibly and promptly if there had been such a "cataclysmic event." The accusations that any of us have been involved in some sort of massive cover-up is ludicrous for one simple reason: Nothing occurred to cover up!