ROSWELL ALCOHOLICS: The Alien Anguish
Written By: Anthony Bragalia
Some drink to forget. Those who have experienced a severe traumatic event often feel compelled to abuse alcohol to dismiss it from their minds, so great is the mental pain. But there could be no greater shock than being suddenly confronted by something so utterly alien as aliens. The crash of an extraterrestrial craft and pilot bodies onto the New Mexico desert floor in July of 1947 adversely affected the psyche of many of those involved in its discovery and aftermath. A new review of the witnesses at Roswell reveals that many were in fact driven to drink by the sight of the unearthly.
LIQUOR FOR A LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR
In 1991, brothers Ruben and Peter Anaya confirmed to researchers that they were privy to the emotional breakdown of a high-ranking New Mexico politician in July of 1947. The brothers, who were active in the Democratic Party, also acted as assistants and personal drivers for Joseph Montoya, Lt. Governor of the state in the late 1940s when he was in the area. Ruben had received an urgent knock at his door. It was his father, who needed to relate to his son (who did not have a telephone) that he had just received a call from Lt. Governor Montoya, who said that he needed Ruben to immediately come to the Roswell Army Air Field base to pick him up.
Ruben was told that the Lt. Governor was at the "big hangar" (Hangar P-3, or Building 84) at the base. The Lt. Governor was exclaiming, "Get your car and pick me up! Get me the hell out of here, hurry!" Ruben assembled his brother Peter, and Montoya supporters Moses Burrola and Ralph Chaes. Peter Ruben was a retired WWII vet, a base cook and member of the NCO club, and had an official sticker on his car. Waived through by gate guards before the base "lockdown" they proceeded into the base. The Lt. Governor has said to meet him at the water tower, which was near the "big hangar." The men related to researchers that the hangar was teeming with activity, with MPs guarding the area. As the door to the hangar opened up, Montoya came bounding out and jumped into the awaiting car. He then yelled, "Come on, lets go. Let’s get the hell out of here!"
Rather than being taken to the Nixson Hotel where he usually stayed when at Roswell, Joe Montoya said that he wanted to be taken to Ruben’s house. He started to repeat dazed and near-hysterically, "They weren’t human...they weren’t human!" The Lt. Governor told the group of men in the car, "I need a drink."
As they drove to the house, Montoya’s demeanor changed to a pained, reflective gaze as he stared out the car window. Upon arriving in the home, Montoya fell to the sofa. Ruben gave the Lt. Governor a glass with strong Scotch. In an attempt to further calm him, Montoya was handed a 3/4 full bottle of Jim Beam whiskey. The Anayas relate that Montoya then imbibed the entire thing -straight from the bottle and in large gulps.
Between swigs, the Lt. Governor excitedly said in Spanish, "Un plato muy grande con una machina en la media!." He continued, "We don’t know what it is. There was a flying saucer. Not a helicopter. I don’t know where its from. It could be from the Moon."
Montoya, still guzzling drink, explained that they were to say nothing but that he saw "four little men, one still alive." He further indicated to his friends that the beings were about 3 1/2 feet tall, with big eyes and large bald heads. They were laid out on a table from the mess hall. Their mouths were slit-like. They were pale, with white skin and hairless bodies. They were wearing silver, tight-fitting flight suits. Their appendages were long and thin. The brothers, asking questions, were told that the beings were taken to the base hospital. Drink in hand and exasperated, the Lt.Governor insisted, "They were not from this world!"
Jim Beam was working its effects on the Lt. Governor, finally lulling him into a fitful sleep on the couch. Upon awakening from his alcohol-induced stupor, Montoya asked to be driven to the Hotel, no doubt hoping to forever forget what he wished he had never seen.
THE SERGEANT WHO SUFFERED
John Price is a Roswell resident who became acquainted with a man with a remarkable story to tell about the crash event. In 1994, Price has met up with 78 year old Thomas Gonzalez. a Sergeant in the 509th in July of 1947. Military documents -including his picture in the Base Yearbook- confirm Gonzalez’ service at that time. Price asked Thomas if he recalled anything about the incident in 1947. Thomas answered in the affirmative. After returning from Europe at the end of WW II, he was transferred to Roswell Army Air Field. He said that he, his wife and his children were living at the base at that time. He then told Price that he was tasked to act as a guard at the Roswell crash site. Gonzalez said that he remembered the site well.
There were bodies of what he described as "little men." The "little men" were human-like with slightly larger heads and eyes. "Little men" is the precise term used by Lt. Governor Montoya. Like Montoya, Gonzalez said that there were four of them, and - like Montoya- that one was still alive. Gonzalez said that there was a bizarre "airfoil" and a "horrible smell" associated with the cadavers. Gonzalez was so moved by the sight that he had carved out of wood -and had shown to Price- "figures" of the beings. Gonzalez’ son verified that his father had told him this Roswell story in the 1960s.
In the 1994 Vol. 9, No. 5 edition of UFO Magazine, researcher Don Ecker relates his discussion with Thomas Gonzalez: "Gonzalez said he was sent overseas right after the crash, causing undue hardship on his wife and family. And like many witnesses to the event, it affected him for many years. He admitted to drinking heavily after the event- a syndrome which has been reported by a number of other witnesses."
RUINATION OF A RANCHER
Dee Proctor was an original witness to the Roswell crash site. As a youngster in July of 1947 he worked with ranch manager Mac Brazel helping with range duties. On horseback, they both came across the strange debris field of a crashed object on the Foster Ranch. Dee’s mother confirmed to researchers in the early 1990s that her son Dee was returned home from the ranch by Mac and that Mac had shown her a piece of the wreckage that she maintains to this very day did not come from Earth.
Dee though, avoided talking to researchers throughout his entire life. Dee grew up to be a rancher, just like Mac Brazel. From 1991 -when it became known that he, along with Brazel, was an original witness and discoverer of the crash site- till the time of his death at age 66 in January of 2006 of cardiac arrest- Dee managed to somehow never speak publicly about what he and Mac had found. It was Mac Brazel’s son (Bill Brazel) who told a researcher that Dee was involved. Dee’s mother Loretta reluctantly confirmed this in later interviews.
Only once did Dee speak of the event to someone outside his family. In the mid 1990s, noted author and researcher Kevin Randle did talk to Dee by telephone. Randle was actually calling for Dee’s mother Loretta. Dee happened to be visiting and answered the phone. During this "accidental" conversation, Randle managed to ask Dee some questions about the incident. Dee confirmed that he was in fact with Brazel at the debris field. Speaking sparsely, Dee said that military authorities had talked to him in the days following the discovery. There was a field of metallic debris that he believed to be from another world, and that later he had taken some friends out to the site. Randle said that Dee was too polite to hang up, but sensed that Dee was angered about having to talk with Randle. In 1996 Loretta Proctor revealed that Dee had taken her out to the desert to a site two years previously where Dee would only indicate he and Mac had found "something else."
Dee was a very private man who died young, divorced, morbidly obese and alcoholic. He was a man of few words and lived a rather reclusive existence. Even as an adult, he literally hid behind his mother, once dashing out the back door when a UFO researcher came to visit Loretta. His need for drink was confirmed to me by Dee’s ex-wife and by a Lincoln County clerk who described Dee -without being prompted- as a "raging alcoholic." Mac Brazel himself became bottled up, never to speak of the event. He left the Roswell area soon after, a changed and frightened man, according to his neighbors’ accounts.
We can only guess what impact that the ET event had on young Dee and as an adult. His overeating, his isolation -and his destructive drinking habit- may well have resulted from having been the first human being in history to ever lay eyes upon fallen ET things- strange things from somewhere else.
A SCIENTIST UNDER STRESS
Elroy John Center was a Senior Research Chemist who worked in materials science and engineering for the prestigious laboratories of Battelle Memorial Institute in Columbus, OH from 1939-1957. Battelle was implicated in analysis of the Roswell debris in a four-part series of articles on the Roswell-Battelle connection by this author. This complex (and still unfolding) story can be found in the revised edition of the book "Witness to Roswell" and archived on the UFO Iconclasts website and other sites in the articles:
- "Roswell Debris Confirmed as Extraterretrial: Lab Located, Scientists Named"
- "Roswell Metal Scientist: The Curious Dr. Cross"
- "The Final Secrets of Roswell’s Memory Metal Revealed"
- "Scientist Admits to Study of Roswell Crash Debris"
Center was involved in authoring the 1948 and 1949 Battelle Progress Reports (studies sponsored by Wright-Patterson AFB, where the debris was flown) on Nickel-Titanium material that is today known as Nitinol, or "memory metal." This memory metal had characteristics very similar to that reported by witnesses at the Roswell crash site in 1947. The reports that Center authored were restricted for review only by authorized DOD personnel until 2009 when they were made available through Freedom of Information requests by Herald Tribune reporter Billy Cox.
In 1992, Center’s friend "Nick" Nicholson (a holder of several US patents and a former Battelle engineer) confessed to MUFON OH State Director and Battelle employee Bill Jones and to former Battelle scientist Dr. Irena Scott that Elroy Center had told him something profoundly disturbing in 1957. Center had told Nicholson that while he was at Battelle he was directed by his superiors to evaluate pieces of unknown material that had "hieroglyphic like" markings on them. The metal debris was kept in a heavily secured safe at Battelle. Center had learned that the material came from a crashed UFO that was retrieved by military some years prior.
In recent discussions with Center’s family, this author has learned that Elroy Center thereafter became UFO-obsessed. He pored over secret reports authored by his bosses at Battelle (including Dr. Howard Cross) for Project Blue Book. He searched the skies for UFOs. He once took a picture of a disc-shaped object over a dam in Ohio. Center was even visited in his home by an agent of the FBI to discuss the aerial phenomena.
Most tellingly, Elroy John Center was later fired by Battelle and committed to a sanitarium, diagnosed as a severe alcoholic. Periods of sobriety and acuity were interspersed with periods of raging drinking and mental decline. In the end, the brilliant scientist had been reduced to a tormented shell of his former self.
AN INTELLIGENCE AGENT’S AGONY
Major Jesse Marcel was stationed at Roswell Army Air Field as a Base Intelligence Officer in July of 1947. Marcel was called by Chaves County Sheriff George Wilcox to respond to ranch manager Mac Brazel’s visit to him about the discovery of strange debris discovered in a field on the Foster Ranch outside of Roswell.
When located in 1978, Marcel described seeing, handling and transporting what he described as material "not from Earth." This included thin, very light metal with "plastic properties," large solid pieces and other strange items including items that were imprinted with violet symbols that were in a pattern to communicate meaning. The material was impervious to heavy sledge hammer blows and burning. He insisted that the debris was not from any kind of balloon or plane, that is was some sort of off-world aircraft.
Marcel admitted to researcher Linda Corley in his last recorded interview: "There is a hell of a lot I haven’t said. I can’t for the sake of my country." In 2006, Marcel’s daughter-in-law Linda Marcel admitted to this author that Jesse had said to her that there was in fact an additional crash site. She said that at the end of his life, he told her that he did know that there was in fact an additional crash site- and that strewn in the sands were the bodies of people not from Earth.
Members of Jesse’s family in Houma, LA have also been talked to by this author. Jesse’s cousin Nelson Marcel said that Jesse himself told him that he had seen "several pygmy-like bodies" among the debris. Nelson also reported this to the local newspaper and his account appears in the February 15, 1996 edition of the Houma Courier. This account is corroborated by former CIC (Counter Intelligence Corps) operative Charles R. Shaw, who was told this very story by Jesse in 1950. Marcel’s relative Sue Marcel Methane said to researcher Tom Carey that Jesse told her that there were indeed bodies at the crash- and that he had referred to them as "white powdery figures."
We learn that the event caused continuing crisis in Jesse Marcel’s life from Jesse’s own son, Dr. Jesse Marcel, Jr. In Dr. Marcel’s 2008 book on the incident, "The Roswell Legacy" Dr. Marcel for the first time revealed details about how the crash had affected their family in very dark ways. After supporting military efforts (including being publicly humiliated by being forced to be photographed with foil material from a balloon train) his father -the very man at the center of it all- was left to unravel and fall apart.
Though later recovered, we learn from his son that sadly after the crash, Jesse Marcel had spriraled downward. He had become an alcoholic - a result of seeing his own good name ruined by the very military which he served so faithfully and admired so totally. Marcel -like so many others- was "totaled" by Roswell...driven to drink by alien anguish and the ensuing cover-up.
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