Lt. Walter Haut (June 2, 1922 - December 15, 2005) was
the public information officer (PIO)
at the 509th Bomb Group based in Roswell, New Mexico during
1947. Early on July 8, 1947, he was
ordered by the base commander,
to draft a press release to the public,
announcing that the United States Army Air Force had recovered
a crashed "flying disc" from a nearby ranch.
The press release garnered widespread national and even
international media attention. The U.S. Army Air Force retracted
the claim later the same day, saying instead that a weather
balloon had been recovered. Haut also received some criticism
and ridicule in the nation's press for putting out the original
press release. The series of events eventually became known
as the Roswell UFO Incident.
interviewed about the incident decades later, he claimed
only a minor role, but he expressed his belief that there
was "no chance" senior officers who handled
the recovered material, including base commander Blanchard,
mistook a weather balloon for a flying saucer.
later claimed greater involvement, including seeing alien
corpses and a craft at a base hangar and handling the
strange crash debris.
Haut was born in Chicago, Illinois on June 3, 1922. During
World War II, he was a bombardier
flying 35 missions against Japan. At Operation
Crossroads, the A-bomb tests at the Bikini atoll in the
summer of 1946, he dropped instrument
packages to record data from the bomb blasts.
In 1947, he became the public information officer for
the 509th Atomic Bomb Group at Roswell Army Air Field
in New Mexico. The base commander, Colonel William H.
Blanchard, was a close personal friend.
1991, Haut and two other men founded the International
UFO Museum where he presided as president
until 1996. Haut died on December 15, 2005 at the age
Haut and the Roswell UFO incident
the first book on the subject, The
Roswell Incident, Haut was said to be "not
a witness". He told interviewers in 1979 that base
commander Colonel William Blanchard asked him to write
and distribute the press release but that was told that
when he asked to see the object in question, "his
request was impossible."
UFO Crash at Roswell,
Haut appears as a witness, though not to any of the actual
debris. During a March 1989 interview, he said he knew
"nothing" about what was recovered. He described
being asked by Blanchard to write the press release. "I
didn't hear about it until, I guess, Jess [Jesse
Marcel, head intelligence officer, who
initially investigated and recovered some of the debris]
was on his way to the flightline." He did, however,
describe what Marcel
told him: "It was something he had never seen
and didn't believe it was of this planet. I trusted him
on his knowledge." He further stated: "I
think there was a giant cover-up on this thing."
an affidavit signed May 14, 1993, he repeated the above
claimed sequence of events and added "I believe
Col. Blanchard saw the material, because he sounded positive
about what the material was. There is no chance he would
have mistaken it for a weather balloon. Neither is there
any chance that Major Marcel would have been mistaken."
this time, Haut, along with Max Littell and Glenn Dennis,
had opened the International
UFO Museum and Research Center.
in a recorded interview from 2000 with Wendy
Connors and Dennis
Balthauser, Haut claimed to have personally
viewed an extraterrestrial or alien craft and a body in
a Roswell Army Air Field base hangar and being present
at a senior staff meeting where a cover-up of events was
discussed. Haut also placed Brigadier
General Roger M. Ramey, head of the Eighth
Army Air Force in Fort Worth, Texas, at the meeting. Ramey
would later tell the press it was in fact a misidentified
weather balloon after Haut had put out the press release
of the recovered "flying disc".
December 2002, Haut also signed a sealed affidavit in
which he went into more details about the craft, debris,
bodies, and cover-up. Both the interview and affidavit
were not to be released until after his death.
full text of the affidavit was first published in June
2007 in the book Witness to Roswell:
Unmasking the 60-Year Cover-Up. According to
the authors, Haut had sworn to his friend Colonel Blanchard
not to reveal in his lifetime the events he witnessed
and therefore told researchers either that he couldn't
remember or that he had only prepared and released the
information that was given to him at the time and denied
he knew anything else.
his affidavit, Haut stated that on July 8, 1947, following
the press release he put out in the afternoon, he was
taken out to a base hangar by Colonel Blanchard. There,
he saw an egg-shaped craft about 15 feet long and several
small bodies about four feet tall with large heads. He
was convinced the bodies were alien and had come from
a crashed spacecraft.
also stated that there had been two major crash sites
that he had become aware of the day before: the first,
a large debris field about 75 miles northwest of Roswell
(the site investigated by Major
Marcel), and the second, about 40 miles
north of town, where the main craft and bodies were found.
The north site had just been found by civilians on July
7, and apparently word had already gotten out about it
in the public.
the staff morning meeting on July 8, which Haut said he
attended, key officers at the base were briefed and strange
debris was handed around, which nobody could identify.
Haut also said there was a discussion as to what the public
was to be told. General Ramey had flown in to attend the
meeting. Haut said Ramey suggested telling the public
about the more distant debris field as a diversion from
the more accessible and important body/craft site. He
felt Ramey was following orders from The
Pentagon. Haut added he was not aware at
the time exactly what information was to be divulged.
But the press release he put out a few hours later spoke
of the more distant site in general terms, saying that
the Army Air Force had come into possession of a "flying
disc" with cooperation of a local rancher, and it
was being flown on to "higher headquarters"
after being examined at the base. "Higher headquarters"
quickly turned out to be Gen. Ramey in Fort Worth, who
within a few hours, said the "flying disc" was
a misidentified weather balloon.