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  • Brian Keneipp

My encounter with ufologist J. Allen Hynek when I was 13

J. Allen Hynek - ufologist & scientific consultant to Project Blue Book

Interestingly, 60 Minutes aired its episode on UAPs (Unidentified Aerial Phenomena), better known as UFOs, yesterday on May 16, which coincidentally is my late Dad's birthday. This transported me back to years ago when I was 13 sitting with my Dad who was an Engineer in the front row of a conference hosted by the Institute of Transportation Engineers in a suburb of Chicago to hear Dr. J. Allen Hynek, scientific consultant to Project Blue Book, share his insights on UFOs. He presented to his skeptical audience several slides of UFOs investigated by his team in Project Blue Book that could not be explained away. He started his work with the Air Force run project convinced there were no valid UFOs. But as he continued his association with Project Blue Book, he became convinced that there were indeed Flying Saucers visiting Earth.

Hynek (pictured above) was Professor of Astronomy at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL, my home town at the time. I was one of his captive audience. As a young boy, I was very impressed with him and thrilled to be there because I was into astronomy and my parents had just bought me a small refractor telescope to explore the cosmos.

Me at Disneyland

My Dad lived a full life till 93 years of age and demonstrated through his actions to my Mom who was plagued by Alzheimer's what undying and growing love means.

My Dad and his infectious laughter

Whenever he appeared in her periphery at the Assisted Living, she lit up every time without fail and so did he. I do miss my dear pops and our conversations about varying topics ranging from jazz to current news.

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