Date: August 29, 1967
Location: Cussac, France
Two children saw a sphere-shaped UFO, 2 meters in diameter, and "four little devils" on the ground. One of the humanoid beings was bending over, apparently busy with something on the ground, and another held a mirror-like object. They were observed to levitate before quickly entering the UFO and flying away. The UFO was said to make a soft whistling sound and smelled of sulphur.
Artist Michael Buhler's impression of the Cussac encounter.
Another artist's impression of the Cussac UFO and occupants, by Joël Mesnard, published in "Phénomènes Spatiaux" n°16.
Claude Pavy of GEPAN (the offical French UFO study program) in 1967, with the two children at the site of the encounter.
Type of Case/Report: StandardCase
Hynek Classification: CE3
Shape of Object(s): Round
# of Witnesses: Multiple
Special Features/Characteristics: Humanoid/Occupant, Children, Landing, Animal Reaction, Smell/Odor
Investigation of the Cussac case by GEPAN, the offical French government/scientific UFO study program. "This case constitutes, to my point of view, an example of investigation where the methods we used have permitted to collect useful information for the scientific analysis of the case... This is the reason why it appeared to me necessary to recall, with a sufficient detail, the work we have done on this case in 1978."
Source: Joel Mesnard and Claude Pavy, excerpt from FSR, Sept/Oct 1968
[Excerpted from the original article]
"ENCOUNTER WITH 'DEVILS'"
A strange account from the Cussac Plateau in France By Joel Mesnard and Claude Pavy
Translated from Phenomenes Spatiaux for June, 1968, by John C. Hugill
ON the Contal plateau in a setting of pastures divided by little stone walls and curtains of trees, a liny village stands on a hill—Cussac, 20 km. east-south-cast of St.-Flour. It is 10.30 a.m. on August 29, 1967. In a meadow beside Route D.57 ten or so cows are grazing in the care of Francois Delpeuch (131) and his sister Anne-Marie (9) accompanied by their little dog Medor. The weather is fine, the sky is clear, and a light wind is blowing from the west.
As the cows make a move to cross the low wall, Francois gets up to bring them back, turns round and sees, on the other side of the road, what he takes at first to be four children. They are behind a hedge 40 metres or so away. He climbs on top of a few stones the better to see these children whom he does not recognise. Francois and Anne-Marie make out, near the strangers, a large sphere half hidden by the hedge. It is very brilliant and shines so much it is painful to look at.
One of the little beings is bending over and seems to be busy with the soil, while another, holding in one hand an object which reflects the sun (which Francois likened to a mirror), is waving his hands, apparently making signs to his companions.
Francois then called out, "Have you come to play with us?" At this moment the small beings, who did not seem to be interested in the children, became aware that they were under observation. The first one (see sketch) took off vertically and then plunged head first through the top of the sphere. The second followed in the same way, and the third, after getting up, did likewise. The fourth also got up, but before diving into the machine, came down again and seemed to pick up something from ihe ground (his mirror, Francois thinks). Then he took off again and caught up with the sphere which during this time had begun to rise in a small spiral, and was already 15 or so metres up in the air. He then disappeared inside like the rest. When climbing, the sphere made a soft, fairly piercing whistling noise, mingled with the sound of a breeze which neither of the children felt.
The sphere then made several more circles, climbing al! the while, and in doing so the intensity of the light given off by it increased considerably. Then the sound stopped and the sphere flew off at full speed to the north-west. At the same time, a smell of sulphur began to spread, reaching the children. The cows started lowing and gathered near to those of Francois and Anne-Marie.
The dog Medor barked at the object and wanted to follow it. The children did not see the object disappear, as they had to look after the cows, which were very upset, and which they drove home half an hour earlier than usual.
Details of the object are scanty. It was a perfect sphere, about 2 metres in diameter, of a very brilliant luminous silver colour, and dazzling. Francois, who wears spectacles and so must have sensitive eyes, experienced running eyes for a quarter of an hour after seeing the object, and every morning on waking for several days afterwards. His sister, who does not wear glasses, felt nothing.
No details were noticed on the sphere itself; it was perfectly smooth, without marking or visible opening. The little beings seemed to pass through the wall of the sphere. The only detail noticed, and one of the points of difference in the children's stories, was by Anne-Marie. She says she saw beneath ihe machine a landing gear consisting of three or four straight legs, equipped with round "shoes" 10 cm. in diameter. They were no longer \ isible beneath the machine in flight. Anne-Marie did not sec them retract into the machine. One minute they were there, the moment after, they were there no longer. It may be thought that, as the machine rose and the intensity of the light increased to a point where it was unbearable, the visible details of the object would have been swamped by this dazzling light, which would explain why Francois, with his sensitive eyes, could not see the legs at the point of take-off, since at that instance the machine was very luminous.
The smell of sulphur spread as the machine began to climb in a spiral or, more precisely, helical course. The light west wind was blowing from the object towards the children. The cows started to low as soon as the machine moved off. It may be noted that in sufficient concentration, ozone has a smell which could be confused with that of sulphur (i.e. of sulphurous gas) and that a smell of ozone has already been noticed in a number of UFO landings.
Details of the small beings are more numerous and interesting. They were 1-1-20 metres tall, not all of the same height. Nos. I and 2 (see sketch) were the smallest, and the tallest was No. 4, the one with a "mirror" in his hand. They were "completely black", but with a shiny look which Francois compared to that of silk. The children could not be certain whether the colour was that of the beings' skin, or of some sort of protective suit, for there was no visible dividing line between any possible clothing and the heads of the beings, which were bare. If there was a protective suit of some kind, it was perfectly fitted.
The limb proportions were not completely in accordance with the norms of our species. The arms were somewhat too long and thin (see sketches). The children could not distinguish anything which might serve as hands. The legs were short and thin. The head seemed of normal proportions relative to the body, but the cranium was pointed and the chin equally was very much accentuated. The nose also was pointed, and here was a second point of difference in their stories...
Although they did not appear to wear any apparatus on their backs, the beings flew with great ease and speed...
We then went to Cussac where we found little Anne-Marie with her mother and her younger brother, Andre, and were very well received. We questioned Anne-Marie for nearly an hour. There were two of us and we asked questions in turn, in a continuous stream, reverting from time to time to the same questions but differently formulated, in an effort to try to make the child contradict herself. She is a timid little girl, bui she never once did so. After this interrogation she took us off to find her brother Francois who was working in the fields with his other brother Raymond. We walked back with Francois to his parents' home, interrogating him as we had done his sister. He too never contradicted himself. Again, when questioning them together, both at home and at the scene of the incident, and asking them ever more specific questions, we never saw any conniving looks pass between them. They never seemed embarrassed by our questions; either they had seen the detail asked for, or they had not. For example, Francois told us: "From the first day, Anne-Marie has said she saw legs beneath the object, but I didn't see any, so I can't tell you anything!" On this point, incidentally, he thinks she mistook the branches of the hedge for "legs".
All the above only strengthen the feeling, which we had had throughout the enquiry, that we were confronted by a passionately believed and deeply serious case, whose significance and importance we could not overemphasise...
Case ID: 705
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