Saturday, October 9

The Vanishing Aircraft Swallowed By A UFO

Cessna 182 planePeople go missing all the time. There's a whole list of well known people who have disappeared without trace but not quite so many who may have been intercepted by a UFO.

One such well known case is that of Frederick Valentich, an Australian amateur pilot. He disappeared on October 21 1978 and he or his aircraft have never been found.

All the action took place after departing Morrabin Airport, Melbourne. Valentich was on a flight across the Bass Strait to King Island in his blue and white Cessna 182 aircraft.

The flight appeared to be going okay for the best part of an hour when at 7:06pm Valentich radioed aircraft control reporting that there was a large aircraft flying within sight of him at 5000 feet. His call sign was Delta Sierra Juliet (DSJ) and this is how the radio exchanges went. These were punctuated with curious metallic noises.

Control: What type of aircraft is it?

DSJ: I cannot confirm. It is four bright ... it seems to me like landing lights.

DSJ: Melbourne, this is Delta Sierra Juliet. The aircraft had just passed over me, at least a thousand feet above.

Control: Delta Sierra Juliet, roger. And it is a large aircraft, confirmed?

DSJ: Er ... unknown, due to the speed it's travelling. Is there any airforce activity in the vicinity?

DSJ: Melbourne, it's approaching now from due east towards me ... it seems to me that he's playing some sort of game. He's flying over me ... two, three, times ... at speeds I could not identify.

DSJ: Melbourne, Delta Sierra Juliet. It's not an aircraft. It is ...

Control: Delta Sierra Juliet, can you describe the ... er ... aircraft?

DSJ: Delta Sierra Juliet, as it's flying past it's a long shape ... cannot identify it more than it has such speed ... it's before me right now, Melbourne.

Control: Delta Sierra Juliet, and how large would the ... er ... object be?

DSJ: Delta Sierra Juliet, Melbourne. It seems like it's stationary. What I'm doing right now is orbiting and the thing is just orbiting on top of me also. It's got a green light and sort of metallic-like. It's all shiny on the outside ...

Control: Delta Sierra Juliet.

DSJ: Delta Sierra Juliet (there is a 5 second pause). It's vanished.

Control: Delta Sierra Juliet.

DSJ: Melbourne, would you know what kind of aircraft I've got. Is it a military aircraft?

Control: Delta Sierra Juliet, confirm the ... er ... aircraft ... just vanished.

DSJ: Say again.

Control: Delta Sierra Juliet, is the aircraft still with you?

DSJ: Delta Sierra Juliet, it's now approaching from the south-west.

Control: Delta Sierra Juliet.

DSJ: Delta Sierra Juliet: The engine is rough idling. I've got it set at twenty-three / twenty-four and the thing is coughing.

Control: Delta Sierra Juliet, roger. What are your intentions.

DSJ: My intentions are ... ah ... to go to King Island ... ah ... Melbourne. That strange aircraft is on top of me again (there is a two second pause). It is hovering and it's not an aircraft.

Control: Delta Sierra Juliet.

DSJ: Delta Sierra Juliet, Melbourne (the microphone was then left open for 17 seconds and radio control was then lost).

A Search and Rescue alert was given at 19:12 and a sea and air search was undertaken, and two RAAF P-3 Orion aircraft were scrambled. The search continued for a seven days but no trace was found of the missing aircraft or Frederick Valentich.

The official Department of Transport investigation reached two conclusions. (1) Degree of injury presumed fatal and (2) Opinion as to cause has not been determined.

The Bass Strait has been a source for UFO sightings and - after the disappearance became general knowledge - several people came forward claiming to have seen strange aircraft in the area. One couple said they had seen a green, starfish shaped object flying out to sea from the area where the Valentich's aircraft went missing.

A spokesperson for the Department of Transport said at the time how it was strange that these UFO reports only filtered in 'after' the Cessna went missing.

I guess the final thoughts should go to Guido Valentich, Frederick's father. He said that he hoped his son had been taken by a UFO and had not crashed. Guido also told of his son's interest in UFOs and how he had lots of information on the subject. He went on to say, "He was not the kind of person who would make up stories, everything had to be very correct and positive for him."

The Aircraft Accident Investigation Summary report can be viewed, but it doesn't give much additional information.

Some say that Frederick Valentich set up his whole disappearance whereas others are certain his aircraft was swallowed up by a UFO. I guess we'll never find out for certain.

Further Reading:
King Arthur, Excalibur And The Cornish UFOs
The Electric Human Magnets
The First And Last Soldiers Killed Coincidence

Bookmark and Share


  1. interesting it certainly makes me wonder about ufos there must be some truth in all of these sort of stories

  2. Fascinating story. If every country in the world opened up their UFO files, maybe the picture about this phenomenon would be easier to understand!