A UFO Digest Spotlight on…V-SHAPED Craft Observed in Springfield, Illinois…

As “Cosmos 1900” Fell To EARTH
(October 1988)

By Robert Bartel

(Copyright 2010, Robert Bartel – All Rights Reserved)

During the fall of 1988, I was living in Springfield, Illinois and by then a veteran police officer and field investigator for MUFON.  After meeting with a field rep, from Michigan (as I recall) at the local County Fair that summer in 1985, I was looking over their field display booth and was speaking with their field investigator regarding my own earlier UFO sighting, which I have reported here. I was invited to become a field investigator for them if I wanted to investigate UFO cases in and around a 2-3 countywide area.  

A few cases came in them more which I thought as a trained and educated person who was working in Law Enforcement was a chance to meet others who had seen something and wanted to make a field report regarding UFO’S .

Well, my cases went right to MUFON HQ after the interviews of the witness, and later one of the investigators in 1988 started a WHO’S WHO in UFOLOGY.  I was listed and I recall saying something like this for my bio intro:

“There are things we call ‘UFO’S’. What they are and what they want is still something that has mankind is wondering about and has been wondering even from ages past.”  

Well, back at my new home in Springfield, I got a call from a young man who “is having car problems”…He is out in the dark and needs a bumper jack to change a flat tire. 

I was with some people who came over; I want to say this was in “the Fall of 1988” and after doing some current investigation, it had to be the Saturday of the first week in October (which would be October 1st, 1988).

Why I say this, its the way I can help retrace the events, which I ‘m about to report here in this update, recalling my observations and findings on just what was the huge V-Shaped object over the county, floating around in the dark rural skies of October that year.

The young man, David Russo, was from Chicago and was with a friend of his checking on his grandfather’s property right off of Route 36 and the Loami Road, in Sangamon County, IL.  I asked my friend, Tom Sours, who was with me at my house if he wanted to ride along to help me out.  He said “Yes.“

When we got there, at this area very close to a set of railroad tracks, and with just one farm house, from which David called, I pulled up and I was facing my car, looking South  In front of me was a tall stand of trees, to my right, a field, and to my left, the highway (36) and the railroad tracks just on the other side of the 2-lane highway.

David’s car was off to the right side of me. David got out of his car and came over to my car and was kneeling down as he was talking to me about his car.  For some unknown reason, I was looking in my rear view mirror as I was looking around me.  Maybe a force of habit as a police officer, you always seem to be scanning your surroundings just in case something goes wrong or “is about to go wrong.” It’s just a way of life for a police officer to be on guard at all times.

As I’m looking in my rear view mirror, I see these lights I am not sure what they are; they seem to be like looking at a camera with a open lens taking pictures of headlights in the dark, like one of those sort of photos, except this is not at all coming from my rear view mirror. 

These colored lights are in front of me and above trees and they made no sound as I observed above l tree line about 40 feet away from my car…I ask the guys what are those lights … they stop talking and we all start looking at these lights moving in a Southeast heading…the night sky is a bit overcast but you can see into the night sky with no problem…  I ask David to move away from my car door so as I could go with Tom and the other two and walk to highway, so we all could get a clear view of these lights.

We all walk together to the edge of the Route 36 roadway and we are now all looking above us and to the Southeast, when in clear view, we all see this huge hovering craft that looked like a V shaped craft, with a flashing red light underneath the wide part of the V in the rear of this craft, the trailing lights are in different colors red, green, blue.

We just all stared at this thing, whatever it was, I had never seen anything like it; it was going very slow and was I would say around 1500 feet off the ground.  I said “OK, lets follow it” and we all went back to my car and and I drove towards this craft as it moved towards Loami , IL . We all had been watching it, and then without any warning, it disappeared and was gone.  Not one bit of noise came from it.  I drove around to see if I could pick it up at some other location but was able to locate it.

We drove back got back to David’s car and fix the flat tire we all talked about this craft and I cold hardly wait to get back home to call my MUFON leader about the sighting, he said fill out the reports and get everyone’s names and details which I did and send them off to Gulf Breeze which I did to that investigator.

I had called the Springfield airport tower and asked them if they had seen anything on their radar scope and they no however the radio stations had been getting call from people who saw this object as well. The area was the same as where I saw it. The radar person also said he would call the St Louis tower he did call me back and said they did not see it either on radar.

The next day, which was a Sunday, our local University said through a spokes person that  it was the Russian spacecraft, COSMOS 1900, which was sighted over Sangamon County last night. 

Well, with as many eyewitnesses who saw what we had seen, this flying V-Shaped craft bigger then anything I had ever seen in the skies, and clearly not a re-entry rocket or spacecraft, which was said to be what it was not; it seemed clear to me that it was a cover up (to say the least) going on with many others who saw it as well.  It just seemed like a BIG cover-up in the making. 

I have since the end of the late 80’s stopped chasing things that “go bump into the night” …well at least UFO’S.   I have been a Private Detective since 1992 and enjoy mysteries of a different sort.  I also write scripts and enjoy that as well, but I still watch….

I don’t chase, but I still watch the sky at night.

Robert Bartel
Private Detective
Documentary Writer/Producer
Springfield, Illinois

July 4th, 2010


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