by Tom Mahood

My, my, my.....It appears pigs can actually fly.

After ONLY 3 stinkin' years and 5 months, the good ol' CIA finally coughed up the hairball that was my FOIA request for the crash records of 928. This was after several bouts of annual letters from me to Congressmen and Senators, whining about things dragging on so long. Not that I think that sped things up in the least...I'm sure the CIA works at its own speed.

But it was worth the wait! A wondrous pile of 52 documents, perhaps totalling 150 pages or so, mostly stamped "Top Secret". Maybe a quarter to a third are simply press reports tracking what the media got wind of (those were merely stamped "Secret"), but the remainder consist of some very choice stuff, including the results of the investigation. Not too much was blacked out, except CIA/Groom personnel names, ANY reference to Groom and certain security channels. There were no photos, only documents. In all, the documents fill in all the remaining blanks in the story, and I finally get to put it to rest. While there are plenty of references mentioned to other documents I did not receive, and suitable for further FOIAs, I have no interest in waiting another three years. I'm done. I have what I want.

Beyond the actual crash reports, this great pile of documents also contained a number of gems. Here are the more interesting of them:

Finally this: There was a chase aircraft along for at least a good portion of Ray's flight. At the end, the chase aircraft didn't see him eject, but noted the flameouts and watched 928 nose over and descend steeply into a cloud deck at 18,000'. It would appear this second craft was either an A-12 or SR-71. The reason the second craft is probably another Blackbird is due to the description of the two aerial refuelings by the accident report summary. It states the second left him 4 to 5,000 pounds below what was programmed for him. It also says that "...during the second refueling the chase aircraft refueled first and took 4,000 pounds of fuel which if available to the primary aircraft would probably have enabled the aircraft to return to home base." If the chase plane was burning the same exotic fuel as 928, it pretty much has to be a Blackbird.

So, for the first time anywhere, here are the actual reports, describing the incident. (Who else treats you this well!??) Rather than scan them in as multiple large gif files (and their quality is pretty poor), they've been scanned in as regular HTML files. The small amounts of censoring contained within them are denoted by [XXXXX].

I'm outta here..........

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