by Susan Boyce

It cuts a strip between King George Hwy. and Scott Road and runs from the US border to the north edge of New Westminster. It's known as the Surrey-Delta Corridor, and it's a hotbed of UFO sightings and unexplainable phenomenon.

"We receive an incredible number of reports from this area," says Michael Strainic, [Canadian] National Director of the Texas-based organization called MUFON (Mutual UFO Network Inc.). Even so, he estimates only one out of every ten people who see a UFO actually file a report.

Graham Conway, retired police officer and member of MUFON, believes this is in part because people have no idea where to report a UFO sighting. "One man phoned the airport, the RCMP, his local police station, and finally the Planetarium before he found our number," he says. "Most people would have given up long before that."

But there is another, perhaps more universally human, reason for hesitation - fear. One woman, worried about ridicule from her co-workers refused to comment on record. Many others have only agreed to discuss their experiences under an assumed name.

"You can't talk to many people about it," says Tim Moraes of North Delta. "But with so many stars, there must be other life out there. Skeptics need to see a UFO before they pass judgment."

"There's still a stigma involved," agrees Bill Oliver of Surrey. On three occasions during May and June of 1995 Oliver videotaped a brilliant white object zigzagging across the sky above his home. "It would change from a small intense dot to an acorn shape," he says. "When we used a computer to invert the dot image into a negative, it looked just like a classic saucer with a black ring around it."

Moraes describes a UFO he believes followed the car in which he and four friends were sitting for more than ten minutes last summer in the Sunshine Hills area as having a fluid nature. "It had no uniform shape," he says. "It was changing all the time. Like Kaleidoscope imaging, the lights kept moving and shifting."

In contrast, Malcolm Corey, a retired Canadian Air Force armament gunsight technician, describes a large, glowing red ball that flew south over his White Rock home in early November. "It was traveling quite slowly and varied its trajectory, wandering from side to side," he reports. "There appeared to be black stubby protuberances on either side, but they weren't large enough in comparison to the ball itself to be wings."

Corey has more than 1,100 hours of air time and a long history of UFO sightings beginning in the early '50s when he joined the military. "I was in my car returning to the airbase at North Bay,(Ontario)," he says "I came around a corner and there was an object 250 feet across and 50 to 60 feet thick hovering 300 feet above the highway." He remembers the trees thrashing wildly and was having trouble keeping his car under control. He looked away for several seconds, and when he looked back, the object had vanished.

Corey reported the incident to his commander, who walked outside and pointed skyward at several red and white lights circling each other. "Apparently they'd been there since midnight," says Corey. "Every time we scrambled planes to investigate, they blinked out and disappeared until the planes were gone.

"It's a fascinating subject, but oftentimes you feel like you're chasing will'o the wisps," he continues. "The military and scientific communities tend to look at it with something of a jaundiced eye. If they just said , 'Look, you've got something interesting, but we don't have a clue what it is', my intelligence wouldn't be insulted. It's being ridiculed that gets annoying."

Theories about the reasons a presumably advanced civilization would visit Earth are plentiful. Some suggest idle curiosity; some believe they may be stealing energy to replenish the supply on their home world; still others postulate interdimensional implications.

"Maybe they are coexisting in the same space but at a different vibrational level," says Corey. "If we do something to damage the Earth in this dimension, it could have an effect there."

Maybe, as Michael Strainic suggests, there is a metaphoric message we are unable to interpret. "Some of our better witnesses have said things like, 'I felt as if I was being subjected to some kind of elaborate theatre, staged for my benefit,'" he says. "The message is there, but we can't see it."

Perhaps the message isn't even meant for us. "What if these beings are not just thousands but tens of thousand years more advanced than we are?" Strainic asks. "It would be like us looking at a culture growing in a petri dish. We might study it and watch it, but we wouldn't try to set up diplomatic relations with it." But there is another, darker side to the question of why UFOs might visit Earth. More than 180 people in the Lower Mainland alone have reported being abducted by aliens for bizarre and painful experimentation and even theft of human genetic material. "One theory is that they - whoever 'they' are - feel we're on the road to self-destruction and are preserving us for repopulation." says Conway. "The second theory is that they have their own breeding problem now and are trying to correct it."

Whatever the motivation, there has always been a strong connection between UFOs and power lines, and the Surrey-Delta Corridor is no exception - a BC Hydro power line runs right through the centre of it. "We often see UFOs near satellites, microwave stations, dams and mines," Conway points out. "Anything that creates an energy field may be opening a doorway, but that is a guess."

As speculation continues, the controversy grows. Are advanced beings watching Earth, ready to step in before it can self-destruct, carrying alternate dimensions with it? Is Earth an unwilling source of genetic material for a superior extraterrestrial race, or simply an interesting if primitive species worthy of casual and sporadic observation? Are we even able to comprehend the truth?

And, as the inhabitants of this planet continue reaching into the depths of space, what will the beings of distant worlds say of the unidentified lights in their skies?

From South Fraser BC Woman Magazine - Holiday Issue 1995

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