In December of 1966, Captain David D. Schindele, a Minuteman I intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) launch crew commander at the Minot Air Force Base, claimed that he witnessed a saucer-shaped UFO flying over the air base and disabling all 10 nuclear warhead-equipped ICBMs in his charge.
Schindele, who was stationed at Minot AFB near Mohall, North Dakota, from July 1965 to May 1968, claimed that senior Air Force officials were aware of the UFO incident but warned him to never to speak about it. They urged him to erase the incident from his memory like it never happened. However, information about the UFO sighting was leaked to the local media, and on December 6, 1966, the local newspaper, the Minot Daily News, published a story on its front page about UFO sightings in the area and at the launch facility, under the headline, "Minot Launch Control Center 'Saucer' Cited As One Indication of Outer Space Visitors."
Schindele obeyed orders to keep quiet about the UFO incident, but years later, he learned that other members of his missile launch crew and other personnel at different bases across the country had similar UFO experiences.
"During that time in Minot, many of us experienced unworldly incidents at Minuteman facilities but we were all individually instructed to keep silent," Schindele told the Minot Daily News in a recent interview.
"We never realized at the time that others among us were also experiencing incidents, but now the truth is becoming known."
For instance, Schindele learned only a few years ago that Captain Robert Salas, who was a member of an ICBM launch crew at Malmstrom AFB in Montana, at about the time that Schindele was at Minot AFB, reported a similar UFO incident.
"About 35 years after my Minot (UFO) incident and learning about an identical incident experienced by another missileer (Capt. Robert Salas) connected to Malmstrom AFB in Montana, which was during the same general timeframe as my incident, I then contemplated coming forth with the 'truth,'" Schindele said.