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Editor's Note: The Great Lakes Dive Company has disappeared, if it ever really existed. All attempts to contact Adam Jimenez, the alleged company spokesperson have also failed. Unless further evidence is presented or discovered it should be assumed that the discovery of the downed F-89 Scorpion is a Hoax!

New Evidence: the Kinross UFO

by Dirk Vander Ploeg

11:30 August 6, 2006

This is a photograph of a F-89 Scorpion fighter jet.
The mystery surrounding the 1953 "Kinross Case" may well be on its way to being solved. The "Kinross Case", so called for the name of the air force base (AFB) from which the plane departed, involves the disappearance of a fighter jet and its crew, pilot Felix Moncla and radar observer Robert Wilson, sent to investigate an unknown object that was tracked on radar.

A Michigan based company, The Great Lakes Dive Company, announced in 2005 that they had discovered the wreckage of a F-89 and an unknown object at the bottom of Lake Superior. The objects were located at a depth of at least 250 feet. Ufologists, who have been investigating this case, have been waiting for the results of side scan sonar and remotely operated vehicles (ROV) imaging that was to commence in 2006.

The company is owned by a group of Michigan engineers and divers who share a common interest in shipwreck hunting and historical preservation.

The history and mythology of the Kinross Case began on November 23, 1953. A US Air Force F-89 jet fighter was scrambled from the Kinross AFB in Michigan. The plane known as the Scorpion was sent on an "active air defense mission" to intercept an "unknown object." Speculation as to the identity of the object has been the subject of debate for over 50 years.

American officials claim that the object was simply a Canadian aircraft, while Canadian officials deny the claim, citing that there were no Canadian aircraft in the vicinity at the time of the incident.

The following is extracted from the official accident report:

Aircraft took off at 2322 Zebra 23 Nov 53 on an active Air Defense Mission to intercept an unknown aircraft approximately 160 miles Northwest of Kinross Air Force Base. The aircraft was under radar control throughout the interception. At approximately 2352 Zebra the last radio contact was made by the radar station controlling the interception. At approximately 2355 Zebra the unknown aircraft and the F-89 merged together on the radar scope. Shortly thereafter the IFF signal disappeared from the radar scope. No further contact was established with the F-89. (The next 16 or so letters as well as the entire next sentence have been blacked out by Air Force censors) An extensive aerial search has revealed no trace of the aircraft. The aircraft and its crew are still missing.

Radar operators claim that the F-89 and the unknown object seemed to merge on their radar screens. At about the same time as the "blips" seemed to collide, both voice and identification friend or foe (IFF) contact were lost. According to reports, after the two objects came together, only one object, the original rogue object remained and it appeared not be affected as it continued on its original course and speed.

A large scale search was immediately launched. Its important to note that the aircraft was lost in late November and although the weather was stable, it was winter, snow covered the ground and the water of Lake Superior was freezing.

In the summer of 2005 The Great Lakes Dive company was testing some new equipment - wide trajectory side scan sonar and were so impressed by the initial results that they decided to search for a pair of French minesweepers, named the Cerisoles and its sister ship the Inkermann, that were lost in lake Superior in 1919. Unfortunately, they experienced glitches with their equipment and by the time the problems were corrected it was too late in the year for a full search that could take several months to complete.

Actual image of the missing plane. Used with permission of The Great Lakes Dive Company.
So they put off their search for the minesweepers and decided to attempt to solve the mystery of the missing plane, known as the “Kinross Case”. Radar information and the original search grid were available as to where the F-89 was believed to have gone down, so the company had area to investigate. They had just begun searching the area, using the new wide trajectory side scan sonar, and on their first pass located an object on the bottom. It was a plane and the scans proved it was a F-89. The port (left) wing was missing, probably sheared off as well as a piece of the rear tail wing. The starboard (right) wing was partially buried, due to the crash or the gradual build up of silt over the years.

Further evidence was uncovered using Hi Res scans which show that the canopy and the fuselage of the aircraft were intact. The groups took a total of 28 passes over the area, but were unsuccessful in finding the missing wing and tail section. "We have not been able to confirm that the bodies of the two pilots are inside the aircraft", explained Adam Jimenez, spokesman for the company ,"but with the canopy intact, one would assume that would be the case. However, the ROV survey would tell the tale."

< Jimenez stated, "We have confirmed the identity of the F-89 using several techniques. First, the general design of the aircraft is a complete match. Our scan shows an upswept tail section which is a design characteristic of only the F-89 (hence the model name "Scorpion"). Second, this aircraft has a wing pod. Also a design match to the F-89. Also the canopy location is a match. There are also other exact matches that I can't go into at this time. There were no other F-89s or similar aircraft lost over the middle of Lake Superior."

Story continues on page 2

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