Commander Graham Bethune is a retired Navy Pilot and a good friend. During his 26 years of active duty he qualified in over 100 different models of aircraft.In February 5, 1951, he and two other Navy Pilots were sent to Keflavik, Iceland on a Secret mission to meet with the Icelandic Government and Lockheed Overseas, who managed the Airport.
On February 10, 1951, while Piloting a four engine Navy R5D Transport returning from Keflavik, to Argentia, Newfoundland, he had an eight minute encounter with an «Unidentified Flying Object» that was 300 feet in diameter.
The first chapter of Major Keyhoe’s book «Flying Saucers Top Secret» is devoted to this famous encounter
During the Disclosure Project, Commander Bethune revealed his Flight 124 from Keflavik, Iceland was involved with a near miss of a UFO in 1951, about 300 miles outside of Argentia, Newfoundland, over the Atlantic Ocean flying a R5D aircraft. Here is Grahams account of his sighting.
My name is Graham Bethune. I am a commander, retired pilot from the Navy and I went through the regular Navy program of training pilots. I graduated in 1943 from Pensacola Academy Air. All Navy pilots are trained navigators, which is very important because we had to know all of the star system. I navigated maybe 13 years around the planet with the stars. And when I first graduated from Pensacola in 1943 I went to the South Atlantic and we were hunting German submarines. This was all night flying.
Everything we did was at night in patrol planes.
I was transferred to Air Transport Squadron One in 1950. I was sent to Keflavik, Iceland, along with two other officers after a meeting that they had in Washington, D.C., where Iceland was involved in seeing UFOs over Keflavik, Iceland, and they wanted troops up there to protect them.
During our meeting they were explaining to us why they had requested the troops and what they were seeing. And we asked them if they could really go into more detail about the type of craft that they were seeing. And their explanation was that they were seeing lighted circular craft at night. And we knew coming from a Naval Air Test Center, that we had nothing like that that we had tested.
So I asked them, well, what did our government tell you that they were? And they said, «Your government said they were experimental, probably experimental Russian bombers.»
The flight was normally about ten hours. But this particular night we had a 16-knot head wind. «About maybe 300 to 400 miles outside of Argentia, Newfoundland, I saw something below the horizon, on the water, that looked like approaching a city at night. It was just kind of an ambient light, no definition whatsoever. But it looked like we were approaching a large city at night. So I watched it for a while about 1:00 am.
Finally I called Kindens attention to it, who was sitting in the right seat. He was route checking me. He took a look at it but didnt know what it was. We couldnt figure out, there is only ocean out there. We had passed over the guard ship already. The guard ship had told us the weather was clear and no Northern Light activity, and there were no ships plotted in that area.
Control confirmed we were on course and hundreds of miles from land. So we watched it for a while and we were drifting to the right of it. Our heading was 222 degrees at 10,000 feet and we were 40 miles away originally. When we were about 25 or 30 miles away we could see defined lights and there was a pattern on the water. So, with that pattern we couldnt figure out what was going on. It was a circular pattern. And it was very large.
So I sent the crew chief back to get the other plane commander, Al Jones, because they wanted to land at Argentia. There were 31 passengers and we had two VIP crews that had pilots also, and patrol plane pilots. And at the time that they came forward, the lights went out on the water. There was nothing on the water. This was about 15 miles away. I mean it was just dark.
Now standing behind me was the navigator, the radioman, and also the plane captain the cockpit was full. All of a sudden we saw, on the water, a yellow halo that was very, very small, about 15 miles away. And it came up to 10,000 feet like that a fraction of a second.
And I thought that it was going to go right through us. So I disengaged the autopilot, pushed the nose over, because I was going to go under it at the angle that it was coming toward me.
The minute I did that it was up at our altitude and I could see nothing outside of the cockpit but this craft. And so I didnt know which way to go. And then all of a sudden I heard a racket. I didnt know what it was. And I said, «Fred, what the hell was that? He looked around and he said, «Everyone was ducking in the back of us and they collided and they are all lying on the deck back there, scrambling on the deck.»
When I looked back it wasnt there. And he said, «Its over here on the right hand side. Now it was about a mile or so away. It kind of drifted forward, maybe to a position five miles away, and thats where it stayed with us for quite some time.»
This is when we could first see it was below our altitude. But it was still above the horizon where you could see the side of the craft. You could see the dome and you could see the color around the perimeter of the craft.
And then we knew that it was a friendly encounter. We knew that it knew that we were there and had come out to see us. But we didnt think the reason that it flew up was because they wanted to show us what the Icelanders were talking about.
We watched it for a while and Al says, «Let him get in the seat. So I let him get in the seat and he disengaged the autopilot and was going to chase it.» We had a head wind of about 60-knots, so our ground speed was only maybe 125 knots. So he wasnt going to go too far in chasing this thing. But he did turn to chase it.
Initially the UFO color was yellow. Since then I’ve learned from the boys upstairs why we saw different colors as it was coming toward us. The colors were around the perimeter. And it turned from a yellow to an orange to almost a fiery red and then almost a purplish red. And they said that that had to do with the amount of energy being used or dissipated. It had to do with the UFO power settings. When it slowed down, close to us, in a fraction of a second, it was back to the yellow range. And it was foggy around it or a plasma mist.
I decided to go back to see how the passengers reacted, and went to talk to the doctor. I said, «Doc, did you see what we saw? He looked me straight in the eye and said, «Yeah, it was a flying saucer. He says, «I didnt look at it because I dont believe in such things». Well, it took me a couple of seconds to realize what he was saying. He couldnt believe, being a psychiatrist, in that kind of thing. So I went back forward and I said, «Al, whatever you do dont tell anybody we saw anything, they will lock us up as soon as we get on the ground». He says, «Its too late. I just called Gander control, to see if they could track this by radar. So thats how the story got out».
When we landed at Argentia, an Air Force officer interrogated us and showed us photos of UFOs asking me to choose the type we had seen. He made a good report, which went to the headquarters of the Air Force in Washington, D.C.
Commander Bethune flew Naval Transports for 12 years, was a «VIP Transport Plane Commander,» and held a «Top Secret» clearance. He was a test pilot and served six years with the Naval Bureau of Aeronautics. He accumulated over 10,000 Navy and civilian flying hours. He has flown the Secretary of the Navy, Secretary of the Army, Chief of Naval Operations, Commandant of the Marine Corps, the Supreme Allied Commander, and the NATO Commander Admiral Lynde McCormick, and numerous admirals. If a UFO crashed or an important meeting concerning UFOs occurred he would be chosen to pilot the VIPs to their destination. The other event was in the American SW, I believe Commander Bethune had mentioned somewhere in Utah — this craft was also about 100′ in diameter and slightly oval — both events had high ranking US Army and Navy officers in attendance as well as scientists and academics from various stateside universities. Both discs were retrieved and brought back to Wright Patterson.
Frank Chili sent me this photo that was given to him by Commander Bethune. He was quite insistent that US Air Force was getting the focus of UFO attention from the public, but the real player in this and always behind the scenes was the US Navy. Graham was informed by Admiral Forney himself and Graham never doubted that a ploy was set-up to divert attention away from the Navy. He also claimed we had a base on the moon and we had a Navy space shuttle fleet. He felt truth is often stranger than science fiction that ET movies are supported by the government to create acceptance. Thanks to the Disclosure Project and Frank Chili.
George Wolkind writes, «Paula and I are saddened by the news of Graham Bethunes passing away. We both really thought that he was special and he will be missed. He always treated everyone with love and respect. We honor his life and service to his country and his courage to stand up for the truth. He is and always will be the light that will never be extinguished. His wonderful smile that lit up a room now lights up the sky.» Thanks to George Wolkind in Colorado. Go in Peace and Love Graham