July 7, 2009

Vallée & Keel

Jacque Vallée (right) and J. Allen Hynek.

Along with his colleague, astronomer J. Allen Hynek, Vallée carefully studied for many years the phenomenon of unusual aerial sightings and close encounters with humanoids on the ground.

Vallée served as the real-life model for the character Lacombe, portrayed by François Truffaut (shown above, middle) in Steven Spielberg’s film Close Encounters of the Third Kind.

His first three highly thoughtful books, Anatomy of a Phenomenon (1965), Challenge to Science: The UFO Enigma (1966), and Passport to Magonia: From Folklore to Flying Saucers (1969) are classics in the field. A correspondent of mine for decades, I was able to spend some time with Vallée and his wife for the first time only a few years ago when we both spoke at a Virginia Beach, Virginia conference on unexplained phenomena.

Therefore, it was good to hear from my associate, the French-born and now California-based intellectual, ufologist, venture capitalist, computer scientist, and former astronomer, who sent along his thoughts, regarding John A. Keel passing away:

Dear Loren,

I did hear about John’s death. Although this was expected, given his long fight with illness the past few years, it is very sad to realize that his voice is now silent in the debate about the nature of the phenomena that continue to fascinate us.

As you know, his writing and mine have followed a parallel course (I wish I had written JADOO, a delightful book!) as we were among a small number of “heretics” who have consistently questioned the “first-order” extraterrestrial theory. He realized very early that UFOs could not be understood apart from other, terrestrial paranormal phenomena, which put him decades ahead of most researchers. He deserves to be recognized as one of the most creative, independent thinkers in the field.

I know you had a close friendship with John, and send you all my sympathy.

Jacques Vallee
Mon Jul 6, 2009 7:08 pm PDT


I am delighted to see that the mainstream media today is acknowledging the death of John A. Keel. New York City’s Newsday for July 7, 2009, has run a few paragraphs on the passing, in an article, “Keel, writer of ‘Mothman Prophecies,’ dies at 79.”

Loren Coleman About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading living cryptozoologist. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013. He returned as an infrequent contributor beginning Halloween week of 2015. Coleman is the founder in 2003, and current director of the International Cryptozoology Museum in Portland, Maine.

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