Thursday, December 28, 2017

Mary Mayes and the Fused Sand... Again

I had planned on this being just a note attached in the comments, but there was too much information and I thought the illustrations were important to understanding this aspect of the case.

There is absolutely no evidence that Mary Mayes found the fused sand at the landing site. I have been back over the 400 pages of Blue Book files (both the official files and the unofficial briefing files) and the evidence shows that there was no fused sand seen or recovered by anyone other than the claim of Mayes.

Captain Richard Holder was there on the night of the landing, and with his soldiers and others, made extensive measurements of the scene as well as illustrations of what was found where. He wrote in his report that very night, “…Sgt. Castle, NCOIC SRC, M.P. who then accompanied us to the site and assisted in taking the enclosed measurements and observations.”

Although I had been looking for the five-page report that Holder had filed, looking at the way the documentation was structured in that unofficial file, meaning with Holder’s one-page written report followed by a number of illustrations, it is clear that these are the missing pages. They include a detailed drawing of the landing pad impressions, other markings, the locations of the various bushes, and importantly, a note that said, “No other indications of a blast – i.e. – A thrust force – were noted – no other charring, indentations – or other disturbances were noted!”
On another page is the note, “This was determined (estimated) by examining the grass – roots & bushes in the area.”

What we have there is an illustration that located for us, where the various burns were found, including an apparent direction of the heat. What was not listed on this was anything about fused or melted sand. It is clear that a careful examination of the site was made by Holder and others prior to J. Allen Hynek and Ray Stanford arriving a couple of days later. These are the illustrations.






In his long report, Colonel Eric T. de Jonckheere, wrote, “On the evening of 24 April 1964 Sgt. Chavez of the New Mexico State Police accompanied by Agent Burns (sic) of the FBI and Capt Richard Holder conducted a search of the area surrounding the sighting. There were no automobile tire marks or markings of any sort in the area other than those located at the site of the alleged landing and so noted in Holder’s report.”

In that same document, he wrote, “The soil samples obtained at the sighting were given to J Allen Hynek by Capt Holder. They were turned over to Captain Quintanilla who in turn submitted them to ASD for analysis. Laboratory analysis of the soil was completed on 19 May 64. It included spectrographic analysis which revealed that there was no foreign material in the soil samples. Also, no chemicals were detected in the charred or burned soil which would indicate a type of propellant. There was no significant difference in the elemental composition between the different samples.”

This should be enough to convince most people that no sign of the fused sand had been found during the initial investigations and that the site had been carefully searched on April 24. This was prior to Mary Mayes arriving sometime the next day, though we don’t know what time she arrived or how she found the landing site without communicating with one of the principals in the case such as Lonnie Zamora, Sam Chavez, Richard Holder or Arthur Byrnes.

The other, almost unacknowledged problem with the Mayes’ tale, is that there is no evidence in support of it other than Mayes’ own, well, tale. She said she was there the next day, but there is no testimony to support that. She said that she found an area of fused sand but no one else reported it, and we do have the testimony of several of those on the site who refute that. They examined the area carefully, according to the documents available, looking for just that sort of thing, but didn’t see it. She said that she examined the fused sand but unnamed officers came and took it all away. She has no evidence to support that.

Charles Moore, on learning about the fused sand from James McDonald, went to the landing site and carefully searched it again, looking for signs of high heat. It seems highly unlikely that had high heat been applied to the area that there would be a single area of fused sand and that Mayes would have been able to gather every scrap to suggest that high heat. Moore, who actually had his own UFO sighting in 1949 that was carried as an unidentified in the Project Blue Book files, would not be inclined to lie about this.

Remember, Moore wrote, “As I told you earlier, I screened the dirt in the arroyo bottom in an effort to find any evidence of fused material and found nothing that suggested the spalling off of rhyolite, melting of any vesicular lava nor the fusing of any sand. While it is true that the arroyo is subject to washing during summer thunderstorms, the fragments of the burned bush are still there, and I examined carefully the vicinity of the roots of the burned bush but found no evidence of fusing heat.”

It does seem that Mayes was familiar with the area, it does seem that she was attending college in Albuquerque, and that family members, or rather one, had gone to school in Socorro. She gave Sam Chavez and Raymond Senn as references but neither said they knew her. Don provided some evidence that Mayes’ family (Rumpf) did know Senn but we have to compare that with what was said. Both denied that they knew her.

In the end, all that can be said is that the Mayes’ tale does not agree with any other aspect of the case. I believe it to be untrue, told for reasons that only Mayes knew. Maybe it was just a way to intrigue Stan Friedman after a lecture. She didn’t seem all that interested in pursuing it and might have been surprised when McDonald contacted her. At any rate, and all speculation aside, there is nothing to support the tale and a great deal of evidence to suggest that we reject it

26 comments:

Mr. Sweepy! said...

Kevin, prior to Socorro incident, what was Mary Mayes background, experience, education, etc., in UFO investigations? I don't recall her name in UFO circles.

theo paijmans said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
KRandle said...

Theo -

This is the most racist, gender inaccurate, ignorant thing that I have posted on this blog...

To answer your question, without even trying I mention:

Betty Hill
Coral Lorenzen
Georgina Bruni
Cynthia Hind
Kathleen Marden
Linda Moulton Howe
Lorna Hunter
Jennifer Stein
Jenny Randles (notice the "S" at the end of her name)
Chase Kloetzke,
Irene Scott
Sue Swiatek
Debbie Ziegelmeyer
Jenny Ziedman
Cindy DuPont

That enough for you?

I will point out that I would love for the Mayes tale to be true because it would add an important dimension to the Socorro landing. There is simply no independent testimony to corroborate her story... none of those on the scene on the night of the landing reported anything about fused sand. Checks later did not confirm the high heat that would be required for fused sand and no other examples of it on the landing site. No one can put her on the scene and no one mentioned her, though I have found the names of many people who were then in the 24 hours after the sighting.

So, what was the point of your comment? To sling an allegation into a discussion of evidence? An attempt to condemn me because of my gender and race? I did not suggest that she was an infatuated woman, merely offered a possible reason for making the claim... but I also found a newspaper article published around the time that she made the claim that offered a reward for witnesses. Maybe that was the motive. The real point is that there is nothing to support her tale and many good reasons to reject it without having to buy into the current politically correct thinking that obscures important points while we descend into the abyss of ridiculous suggestion.

Now, let's move the discussion back to the relevant points... can you offer any evidence that Mayes was, in fact, on the scene within 24 hours of the landing?

Don said...

I agree with Kevin regarding Theo's comment. I think Kevin's comments about possible motives for Mayes are wrong, but that is due to not knowing who she was, and he makes some guesses that, I'd guess, are due to experiences personal or told by others, rather than indicative of attitude towards women.

Mayes was ten years Friedman's senior; she already had a reputation in her field. There is nothing quoted from McDonald's letter that places the matters discussed in Socorro, NM. McDonald asks Hall whether he'd heard about fused sand found "near" the Socorro landing site, not in it. There is also the assumption that the Socorro she may have mentioned was the Zamora site, but there is nothing in the quotations about Zamora or UFOs. The sand and brush can be found in many places in the desert. There was a Socorro site at NTS where she worked and I'd wager there was fused sand there (a drop codenamed 'Socorro')

But McDonald thought it about the Zamora site, it seems.

Kevin mentioned that McDonald had written that "she had remarried as Mrs White". That would be mid-1969. Ray Senn may have known her through her first husband Bob Mayes, who attended NMIT like Ray had, and they may have met there. If given the name "White" he may have not have recognized it. Or maybe Senn didn't care for her side in the divorce. But he ought to have recognized 'Mayes' if Ray and Bob were friends at NMIT.

Women often complain that men don't listen to them and tend to interrupt them in conversation. McDonald may have been that way and confused some things.

The telephone recording in the McDonald archive is noted as 'unintelligible low volume' and labeled as 'Rumph', her maiden name. All we need from it is the word 'UFO' or 'Zamora' to at least know the subject was discussed.

Regards,

Don

theo paijmans said...

Kevin,

The real point to me is not that her claim was in all probability false. I have no objection with your argument.

The real point to me is that you ultimately could not establish a clear motive as to why she lied or made-up her story. So, because she was a woman, you suggested an emotional motive that you would not have suggested had she been a man.

Perhaps it's based on that same subconscious stereotyping and generalization that Don displays when he writes: "Women often complain that men don't listen to them and tend to interrupt them in conversation..."

But I understand that ufology wants to be seen as 'scientific'.

Best regards,

Theo

KRandle said...

Thanks, Don –

I appreciate the support. I don’t know why race and gender have anything to do with evidence of a UFO landing.

I will note that you made a good point with the quote, “…there was a patch of ‘fused sand’ near the site,” but need to note the sentence ended, “…of the Socorro landing.”

Deeper in that letter, which is McDonald’s interpretation of what he learned from Mayes, he wrote, “…the woman… was involved in some special analyses of materials collected at the Socorro site, and when she was there, the morning after, she claims that there was a patch of melted and resolidified sand right under the landing area.”

While there is nothing about Zamora or mention of a UFO in that portion of the letter, it is clear from the context that she was talking about the Socorro landing, that she said she was there the next morning, and that she found the fused sand right under the landing area. While the first sentence about “near the site” would seem to open things up, the other sentences seem to reduce the time and area to the Socorro landing.

However, you might be right that both Friedman and McDonald assumed she was talking about the Socorro landing. Had she not been talking about that, I don’t believe Friedman would have passed the information to McDonald, and his interest in what she said, and the other letters available all suggest that the Socorro landing was the topic of conversation.

And, of course, the “was involved in some special analyses of materials collected at the Socorro site,” pretty much gives it away

KRandle said...

Theo -

I don't know why you must double down on the sexist claim. I have seen men grouped around the speaker after the completion of a presentation in an effort to have a moment to chat with, or provide UFO information to that speaker. Gender has nothing to do with my suggestion that she just might have wanted to get close to Friedman.

I have seen dozens of men claim to be combat veterans as a way of increasing their credibility who were not in combat, had very short military careers or who didn't serve at all.

I provided two speculative motives including one that had some connection to the tale, which is the reward offered for witnesses. True, they were looking for the people that Opal Grinder had seen, but the article was in an Albuquerque newspaper and published in the time frame of Mayes' report to Friedman.

The real problem is that none of the evidence gathered at the time, none of the follow-on investigations and none of the witnesses can place her at the scene.

But her gender had nothing to do with the rejection of the story... just as gender had nothing to do with my rejection of Gerald Anderson, Glenn Dennis or Frank Kaufmann. I just wasn't convinced about the credibility of their tales or learned things about them that suggested confabulation.

theo paijmans said...

Kevin,

I believe you when you say that gender did not play a part in your rejection of her story. I agree that all the available evidence points that way.

I stated repeatedly that I believe that gender played a part while speculating on a possible motive for her telling her unsubstantiated story.

Best regards,

Theo

theo paijmans said...

Kevin,

As you can see I have deleted my original post. Rereading it I find I could have chosen finer words and a more friendly tone to formulate my argument. Bottomline is I am sensitive to stereotyping, you say that did not enter the equation, so I let it go.

The world has bigger and more pressing problems as it is:)

Best regards,

Theo

Don said...

Kevin,

You and everyone who knows about the Zamora sighting, including myself, read the letter the same way. When you posted up the quotations and I read them the first time, I agreed with you...until I reread them with the eye of a technical writer, and legal researcher for lawyers.

I am not saying Mayes was at the site on the 25th and found fused sand or not, or even that there is evidence she was or was not there. What I am saying is this letter (or these quotations from it) are not evidence she was or wasn't there. If you doubt me, just ask a trial lawyer, or anyone who hasn't heard of 'Zamora', whether this sentence informs us that Mayes said she found fused sand at the Zamora site:

"One last point: Have you ever heard of any reports that there was a patch of “fused sand” near the site of the Socorro landing?"

You and I read the letter expecting it to be about the Zamora site and so we fill it in with the details we know. One reason I am writing 'Zamora site' rather than 'Socorro site' is due to there being two Socorro sites, both of which were in Mayes' 'neighborhood'. She would have been familiar with Socorro NM, but also the Socorro site at the NTS -- a site which very likely had fused sand at it, being the site of a nuke drop code named Socorro.

I do not believe either Friedman, or McDonald, or Mayes lied. That's my assumption, as I cannot see any benefit for any of the three to have done so. That wants evidence, however circumstantial. Good evidence against Mayes being there on the 25th would be if we found she was elsewhere on the 25th. But as of now, the only way to such evidence is the timeframe, which we can establish by knowing at least which year she met Friedman, which year she called or was called by McDonald, and which year she met with McDonald. I don't think a precise date is necessary.

We can take those years and match them to the changes in her surname which are confirmed by marriage and divorce records, supported by the names she was referred to in publications, conferences etc.

I know when the divorce from Mr Mayes was granted, and when she married Mr White. There is about a four year gap between them, during which she would have used her maiden name, Rumph. The next step is to confirm which years the three events occurred.

We think "Mayes" talked to Stan, then Stan called James, then James called "Rumph", then James met with "White". If there are significant gaps between these events, there are odds something may have gotten garbled in recollection.

You wrote, about when McDonald and Kalapaca met:

"[I will assume here the year was 1968]"

Is this assumption is based on the mention of "the Rayburn Building on 7/29"?

However, in 1968, she was not Mayes, but Rumph. How did McDonald learn of that name change so that he could phone her (if in fact he called her, not vice versa), as well as the next name change to White?

You have presented evidence that Holder "carefully" examined the site on the 24th and found no fused sand.
Do any of the documents for that information describe where he set up the lights and the generator? Even with a full moon (if there was one on the 24th) overhead and a clear sky, one would still have to get down on the ground with a flashlight to distinguish a bit of charred wood from a dark colored stone from a spherule of fused sand from a bunny turd.

Lacking the full documentation of the three conversations, I could be entirely wrong, but I am working with what quotations you have presented.

Best Regards,

Don

Don said...

Kevin, in regards to my previous post, my wife objects to a statement I made in it, and she is correct. My statement was:

"I know when the divorce from Mr Mayes was granted, and when she married Mr White. There is about a four year gap between them, during which she would have used her maiden name, Rumph."

She says it is unlikely she reverted to her maiden name, unless she was really p.o'd at Bob Mayes. She would have that option being granted the divorce. For purpose of career, being known as Mayes, and also for the changes to various federal records (such as social security etc), it is likely she kept "Mayes" until she remarried.

Best Regards,

Don

KRandle said...

Don -

This is becoming a pointless discussion of trivia because there is no evidence that she was there or that the fused sand ever existed. I have other letters citing those on the site, which provide additional information about the lack of fused sand. I will mention John Reiche, who was on the site on April 24, 1964, who saw nothing more than unusual than the burned bush. We have Holder and his military pals making measurements that night, which were included in his report which suggests a close examination of the site, and you want to talk about the lighting and the phase of the moon (which, given the Internet, we can determine). We have McDonald, who talked to Mayes, both in person and on the telephone, and it is clear in those other letters that Mayes was saying that she was there, on that site, on April 25, 1964, and she retrieved the "fused sand." And since this is not a criminal proceeding, and we're not in court, then all I need is a preponderance of the evidence... knowing full well that we're not talking to Mayes, but a person (and if you include Friedman, persons) who spoke to her.

My point is, that there is no evidence that Mayes was on the site the next day. Her tale told to Friedman and then to McDonald cannot be confirmed. We are deeply in the weeds here and I see no benefit in all of this. Yes, learning about Mayes is somewhat fascinating, but it is adding nothing to our understanding of the case... she's gone, McDonald is gone, Moore is gone, Holder is gone, Zamora is gone and all we have are the documents, literally hundreds of them, which do not verify her on the site.

Don said...

Yes, there is no evidence Mayes was on the site the next day. You are reviewing the existing evidence; I'm attempting to add something new. I realize it can be annoying to read and put up with as it is not a worked out conclusion. It will have its errors and false trails that lead nowhere. If you would prefer I bail on the discussion, I will. No problem, no blame.

One point: condsider where, as in location, was she working when she was "at the Lovelace Foundation". as you wrote elsewhere. That seems to be the key to the Mayes story. I have an idea, but no confirming evidence yet.

Before I move on, I have a question. Who was the first Air Force officer at the Zamora site and what day did that officer arrive?

I understand the difference between preponderance of evidence and beyond a reasonable doubt.

Best Regards,

Don

KRandle said...

Don -

The first Air Force officer on the site, at least officially, would have been Major William Connor, from Kirtland AFB, who arrived late on Sunday. He might not have been on the site until the following morning. The first military officer on the site was Captain Richard T. Holder, who was there on the night of April 24 and who interview, with Byrnes, Zamora.

We also have Sergeant Moody on the site, who, according to the Lorenzens, was also at the police station on Sunday. I seem to remember reading somewhere that Moody, who was part of Blue Book had been on assignment somewhere else, closer to Socorro than his normal duty station of Wright-Pat, so he arrived there quickly.

Don said...

Kevin, in the FBI memo dated 5/6/64:

"As noted in Albuquerque artel, Captain [redacted], Stallion Range Center, Socorro N.M., was immediatedly advised, 4/24/64, of the facts in the case...

Late 4/24/64 and into 4/25/64, Captain [redacted], who is with the U.S. Air Force..."

This likely a mistake by the FBI, and the memo is referring to Holder, an Army captain. It would seem so from the rest of the memo. I'd not found another mention of a USAF officer that early on the site. I wondered whether I'm missing something.

Moody has another such error, referring to Holder as both Lt and Captain in the same sentence a few words apart.

Best Regards.

Don

Don said...

In the 4/10/64 AbJnl story about the scheduled speakers at NMIT, Mayes is identifed with Lovelace. There was a Lovelace project at Kirtland at that time which was similar to her job at NTS. So, Kirtland seems likely.

You mentioned McDonald had written she had remarried as Mrs White, but that cannot have been in a letter written in 1968 as she remarried in 1969. I've confirmed that she was 'Mayes', not 'Rumph', from the record of her marriage to Mr White. It appears she hadn't used the surname 'Rumph' since WWII.

Best Regards,
Don

KRandle said...

Don -

The letter was written on April 2, 1970.

KRandle said...

Don -

I went back to the original post and it clearly gave the date on the letter as April 2, 1970. I'm not sure where you got the idea that I had suggested that she was White in 1969 unless it is a misinterpretation of what I wrote somewhere... meaning listing the three names we have for her to avoid confusion.

Don said...

Kevin, I confused the November 1968 response from Moore and the reference to a letter of April 1970. As you had posted the November letter from Moore, it stayed with me as the date.

What I'd hoped to determine, since there is no evidence she was at the Zamora site, was if she had been elsewhere on 4/25/64, thus closing the circle. But now it is likely she was at Kirtland (still to be confirmed), and that puts it back to square one, but offers an explanation why she would have referred to Air Force personnel collecting her work.

Best Regards,

Don

KRandle said...

Don -

Given that this is not half a century in the past, I fear you might not be able to conclusively find evidence that she was not in Socorro on April 25. It is always possible that she said the next day, but it was actually a day or two later which, of course, makes her discovery of the fused sand even more problematic.

The other problem is how quickly could she have heard about the case. The Lorenzens learned about it from a radio reporter friend in Alamogordo on Saturday but couldn't get to Socorro until Sunday. The news stories I have from the Albuquerque newspapers are all dated Monday or later, but I do have some clippings with no dates on them. Had the Lorenzens not known the reporter, it might have been Sunday or later when they heard and I really don't know how big the story was on Saturday, meaning how much play it got on television, radio or in the newspapers in the first couple of days... clearly by Monday momentum had built...

The other question is how long was the redacted name you mentioned earlier. In April 1964, Quintanilla was still a captain and he was in the Air Force. Trying to determine a name based on the length is somewhat problematic as well... though Holder is the most likely name to be attached.

I'd noticed that Moody had done that as well, and I believe pointed it out in my book about Socorro. You'll note from the documents I published in the proceeding article, that it refers to Holder as a lieutenant as opposed to a captain as well. I don't know why they would have been confused about his rank... it wasn't as if he was promoted in the days around the sighting which might excuse the confusion.

Don said...

Regarding Lt Holder, I think the answer might be he had been a Lt in the Air Force. I've the cite around me somewhere that of his 20 years in service, the first four were with the AF. Both Ray Senn and Bob Mayes joined the army as E-1. At the end of the war both were 1st Lts. Perhaps that was true (WWII or Korea) of Holder, as well.

Keeping in mind what I have of this correspondence is what you have posted here these past few weeks, the evidence she said she was at the site is, McDonald's "and when she was there, the morning after".

McDonald: "She said there were a few organic materials they couldn’t identify, but most of the stuff that had come out through the cracks and blisters in the stems were just saps from the phloem and xylem." Does this contradict anything in the documents? And that is about plants, which, as a biolgoical chemist, are in her area of expertise.

Friedman has "she was asked to check on the soil", and also that she had been a student at NMIT. "Soil", sand, fused or not, is not really her field. She is listed in the MS biology program at UNM, not NMIT. I have not found one reference to her as Dr. White or White, PhD. Perhaps Friedman's recollection is not accurate.

If she was at Kirtland then, she may have participated in analyses of the plant materials and maybe soil. Our question, of course, is whether there was vitrified sand at the Zamora site. I don't understand why, if she had said to either McDonald or Friedman she had analysed fused sand why they hadn't asked her what the results were. She describes the results of the plant material, but not "soil" or "fused sand".

"The other problem is how quickly could she have heard about the case."

If she was at Kirtland, she may have heard about it not long afterwards if she was on the team doing the analyses of samples collected the 24th and 25th.

Best Regards,

Don

Don said...

Regarding the FBI memo, the first redaction after "Captain" seems too short to be 'Holder' (which is followed by a period), and the second before 'Stallion' too long to be 'Up Range Commander'. If there is a 'U. S. A,' before 'Up Range' then...then I'm no David Rudiak with the patience to work it out -- then there is re-introducing Holder in the next paragraph as an USAF Captain, rather than USA (which one would expect to be in the redacted above).

We have Holder as Lt twice, once by Moody and another in that Tab A. Was that Moody, as well? I think he could distinguish between one bar and two. Fwiw, Holder had been in the USAF his first four years in service, according to his obit.

The most recent version of Friedman's Mayes story appears to be in Fact, Fiction, and Flying Saucers by Friedman and Marden, copyright year 2016.

In this account, Mayes is not at the site, but asked to analyze plant material, and that's the work product the Air Force collected from her. Then it's McDonald, we are informed, who puts her at the site on the 25th to collect samples of scorched vegetation and melted, fused sand (which Friedman, in the book, does not mention). She doesn't analyze the fused sand but described it to McDonald, and also that she had written to "Wright-Patterson AFB" for additional information, but was unsuccessful.

Friedman's story here, is not unreasonable. The actual story is from McDonald. Although the story is told in the context of the Zamora case, neither Friedman nor McDonald attribute anything to Mayes about Zamora, UFOs or even Socorro New Mexico.

McDonald is probably right: Dittmer could have been her advisor at UNM for her MS in biology (and she was in that program in 1964), and, since he knew she had remarried as Mrs White, he'd kept up with her life after the 1968 'interview' and the correspondence with Moore.

How did McDonald and La Paz get along? On the one hand, they had professional reasons to know each other (atmospherics and astronomy), on the other hand, UFOs were a toxic subject to La Paz.

Some source or other (Druffel?) has her as a grad student at University of Arizona. She was there, but in the 1980s when she was senior research associate and, according to their letterhead, "Assistant General Chairman of the Department of Nuclear and Energy Engineering".


Best Regards,

Don

KRandle said...

Don -

I do not know why Moody would have identified Holder as a lieutenant. It is clear from this report written that night that he was a captain and given that he would have had no communication with Moody prior to Socorro, no reason for Moody to be confused. That Holder had been in the Air Force before joining the Army is irrelevant. I, myself, entered active duty with the Army as a PVT (E-1), was appointed a warrant officer upon completion of flight school, and left the Army after about four years. After college I was commissioned in the Air Force, served ten or eleven years on both active duty and in the reserve. Finally, I ended up in the Army National Guard, served seven or eight years, and finally retired. The point is that many of us have strange career paths in the military, so I don't see anything unusual in Holder's career.

I would also note, that Holder, in his signature box on this report on April 24, wrote it out as Captain, Ord/C as opposed to USA (for US Army or USAR for US Army Reserve, depending on his commission) which means, Ordnance and I think Corps, though the "C" might have referred to commanding, since he was the commander of the up range station.

I never got the impression that La Paz thought of UFOs as toxic. Might not have been his favorite subject, but he was deeply involved with the Green Fireballs and one of the explanations offered at the time was some sort of alien probe (and not used for what you might think).

Friedman, in his response to me, doesn't provide much in the way of information about Mayes, other than she had been approached to analyze soil samples. McDonald and Moore both suggest that this was in relation to Socorro and I don't know where they would have gotten that idea if not from Mayes. The letter to Hall from McDonald is dated September 1968, or more than four years after the landing. I can't see McDonald associating Mayes' tale with Socorro if she hadn't brought that up herself.

Don said...

I think it worthwhile to at least have a clear account of the Mayes story available, before setting it aside with the many other things about UFOs that are likely beyond recovering.

For example, against the account Mayes did not follow up on the matter is Friedman/Marden's mentioning her letter to Wright-Patterson. Which account is accurate? What does "unable to acquire it"(information) mean? Did she get a reply that was uninformative, or did she get no reply at all? To who or what exactly was the letter addressed?

The reason for asking about the relationship between La Paz and McDonald is that Mary's father was an instructor in mathematics (he died in 1965). If you have the Mirage 1959 with the photo of Mayes, you'll find his photo on page 95. During some years when both La Paz and Mary's father were on the faculty, UNM's mathematics and astronomy department were combined.

Best Regards,

Don

KRandle said...

Don -

I noticed in the obit for Holder that he had four awards of the Good Conduct Medal. Only enlisted service members are eligible for it, and it normally awarded for three years of service. However, you can receive one for one year of service depending on the circumstances. I have one Good Conduct Medal... everyone in my flight school class, received one but the majority of us only had about 13 months as an enlisted soldier. Four awards suggests 12 years of service in the enlisted grades. The obit suggests only 20 years of service, so, according to that, the majority of his service was in the enlisted grades. Not sure of the real relevance here, but thought I would mention it.

Don said...

Kevin, I didn't know that about the medal, thanks.

I don't know if the Lt or reference to the Air Force are relevant, just odd traces to keep on the back burner, I guess.

That's all the low hanging fruit I picked regarding Mayes. At least, we are certain of her existence, and that she does fit the story, and that is more than interesting.

Best Regards,

Don