High Speed Chase of Marshall Co. UFO

Witness account of pursuing UFO near Warren, MN, Oct. 29, 1979

My name is Steven M. Shoemaker, and this is a statement on the events that took place at approximately 2200 hours, on October 29, 1979. At the time of this incident, I was 25 years old, and was a Sergeant (E-5) Military Police Officer, on active duty in the US Army. I had departed Fort Wainwright, Alaska a few days earlier, and was driving to my next duty station which was Fort Snelling, Minnesota (AWOL Apprehension).

We had turned off Hwy 29 in North Dakota,and were headed East on Hwy 1 in Marshall County, Minnesota. We were enroute to my sister’s apartment in Thief River Falls, where we were going to spend the night prior to continuing on to the Twin Cities.

I was driving a 1977 Chevrolet Nova (V-8, 305 engine, speedometer only went to 80 MPH on this model). My wife Susan (3 months pregnant) was in the car with me, and we were just past the town of Alvarado when we observed an extremely bright light on the road approximately 3/4 to 1 mile ahead. We wondered what the bright light was, thinking maybe an accident or a road construction site. We figured that we would see what it was in a few moments when we got there. After about a minute or so we determined that whatever it was, it was moving because we were not closing on it.

As I got to within approximately 100 yards of the light (traveling at about 100 MPH) it suddenly came off the center lines into the middle of my lane and was coming right at me.

Now being the cocky young Military Policeman, I decided that I was going to find out what this light was. I accelerated to a high speed (I’m guessing close to 100 MPH because the needle was buried past the 80 MPH limit). As I started closing on the light, I observed that the light was an extremely bright yellowish light, which appeared to be approximately 4 to 6 feet in diameter. It was above the centerlines in the road, and was about 3 to 4 feet above the road surface. As I got to within approximately 100 yards of the light (traveling at about 100 MPH) it suddenly came off the center lines into the middle of my lane and was coming right at me.

I immediately locked up the brakes and swerved onto the shoulder of the roadway (everything in the car was flying into the front seat). Instantly the light was back to approximately 3/4 to 1 mile ahead of us again.

Now I was a pissed off, cocky young Military Policeman. I took off after it again, determined to see what the light was. Again, as I got to within approximately 100 yards of the light (traveling at about 100 MPH) it suddenly came off the center lines into the middle of my lane and was coming right at me. I again immediately locked up the brakes and swerved onto the shoulder of the roadway, and instantly the light was back to approximately 3/4 to 1 mile ahead of us once again. This time I was able to observe that the bottom (approx. 1/4) portion of the light merged into a brighter whiter light than the rest of it. It was so bright that we had to squint our eyes when we were closing in on it.

Now I was really ticked off. So off I went after it for the third time, with about the same results, however this time I estimated that we came within 30 to 50 feet of the object (we almost hit it). At that point we decided not to try that anymore. We followed it (at a safe distance) for a couple more minutes. I turned my lights off and on and flashed my brights at it a few times, but it just kept heading down the road. Then it just disappeared. I thought that maybe it had gone out of sight down a hill, but there was no hill.

To this day I only wish I could go back in time to that night and shoot the damn thing down to see what it really was.

About 1 mile later we entered the town of Warren, MN. As we continued past the town, we observed a bright light in our rearview mirror. We watched it for about a minute, then it disappeared. (I don’t know if it was what we chased, or if it was just a car that was behind us.) We talked about what had just happened, trying to figure out what the heck that object was. I don’t think a UFO was high on our list because one would think of UFO’s as flying away, not playing a dangerous game of Cat & Mouse in Northwest Minnesota. (What really ticks me off is that I had a good 35-MM camera in the car, but didn’t think about it at all during this incident.)

When we got to my sister’s apartment, she was asking us about the kinds of animals we saw on our trip down the Alaskan Highway, and while I was telling her, my wife said “and we saw a UFO too.”My sister immediately said, “It wasn’t in Warren was it?” At that point I got a knot in my stomach, and the hair on the back of my neck rose with that goose bump chill thing. I said “What do you mean, it wasn’t in Warren!” We had just drove about 3000 miles, and she nailed this sighting to within a few miles. She said, “Tell me what you saw.”

Val Johnson Car on HighwayI told her what we had seen, and she stated that a Marshall County deputy sheriff was hit by the UFO about 2 months ago. Now I was heading for my new Military Police Unit at Fort Sheridan, IL (with duty at Fort Snelling), and I didn’t want to get labeled as a loony so I only told my friends and relatives about the UFO that I chased.

A few months later I heard the Deputy Sheriff (Val Johnson) being interviewed on a radio talk show, and I made up my mind that I would call him and talk with him. I called up to Marshall County and they said he worked at the Oslo Police Dept. I called the Oslo Police Dept and stated why I was calling. They called Val Johnson at home and he Okayed them to give me his home phone number. I then called Val and stated that I believe that I had chased the object that had hit him. I described to him what had happened. He stated that of all the people that had reported UFO sightings up there, he was sure that I had chased the object that had hit him. He stated that as I was describing the incident he was remembering the small details about the light (such as it being above the centerline and it having a brighter, whiter lower portion) that he had never reported in his statements.

In January 1997, my son had a hockey tournament up at Thief River Falls. We had just gotten a computer with access to the Internet, so I started contacting people from the Warren, MN area to find out how to see the sheriff’s vehicle (I had heard it was on display). I found out that it was in a museum building on the county fairgrounds, but that the museum was closed during the winter months.

One of the people I talked to ended up being the editor of the local paper up there. He stated that he had covered the story back in 1979 and also stated that he thought it was just a hoax since there was no other witnesses or evidence. I told him that I had chased that hoax 2 months later with my wife also seeing it. I told him that I was not some kind of nut, that at the time we chased it I was a policeman also, and that I was now an officer in the US Army National Guard (a helicopter pilot). He stated that he might have to rethink his position.

Johnson CarAnyway I finally tracked down the lady who was in charge of the museum. She lived in Thief River Falls (about 30 miles away). I told her my story. She stated that when I got up to Warren to call her and she would drive over and open it up for me to see the car.When we got to the museum, we had to track through about 3 feet of snow and dig out the front door so we could get in. I got to see the police car, I took pictures of it and all of the investigative reports. She even opened the chicken wire cage it is in and I got to look inside of the car. It was chilling to see the unusual damages to the car, and reliving that night when reading the reports that described what had happened to Val Johnson, and how exact the situation was what had happened to us that night. I feel real fortunate that I was able to avoid colliding with the object that night.

I have often thought about what it was, and why it would be playing cat & mouse with a car in northern Minnesota. The only theory I can come up with is as follows: If it was some kind of extraterrestrial or extra-dimensional beings that were observing our civilization, they would surely be interested in what could hurt them. The Grand Forks AFB (and ICBM missile silos) is not too far from there . Could it be possible that the object was monitoring the military base from that area? It being about 3 to 4 feet above the road surface would give it vertical obstacle clearance and keep it below the radar screens. It being above the centerline in the road would give it left and right side obstacle clearance. Vehicles like the sheriff’s squad car and my car were probably minor inconveniences to its mission, requiring throwing a scare into the occupants if they got to close.

To this day I only wish I could go back in time to that night and shoot the damn thing down to see what it really was.

Steve Shoemaker

MN Mufon Archive

The Shoemaker case was preceded by a UFO flap with several Minnesota and Western Wisconsin encounters through the fall of 1979. Read the story here. To learn more about the Val Johnson case and a similar encounter from Vermillion, SD, read Not Only Vehicle to Collide with UFO.


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2 Comments on “High Speed Chase of Marshall Co. UFO

  1. & Maybe It Was
    A Back-Engineered
    Alien Craft
    Piloted By One
    Of Our Own
    In The SSP
    (Secret Space Program).

    If Interested,
    See Corey Goode
    Videos On This Subject
    At Sphere Being Alliance On YouTube.

    💃🏽

    Like

  2. Pingback: Orbs of Light Haunt MN Campers – UFO Days and UFO News

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