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Aurora Texas Cemetery
Before the Wright brothers successfully flew in their experimental aircraft, reports of “cigar-shaped” aircraft sightings were circulating in the press across the United States.
According to a April 19, 1897 Dallas Morning News story written by Aurora resident S.E. Haydon one such craft flew into a windmill on a farm owned by a Judge J.S. Proctor. The pilot of the craft did not survive the crash and was reportedly “not of this world” and had been buried “with Christian rites” in the Aurora cemetery. According to the same newspaper article, pieces of the aircraft were thrown into a well on Judge Proctor's farm.
In 1935 a Mr. Brawley Oates purchased Judge Proctor's farm and as local legend has it, cleaned the metallic debris from the well so as to use the well for drinking water. Mr. Oates later developed a severe case of arthritis, which he blamed on the water in the well being contaminated. No one knows what happened to that debris.
For years the alleged alien grave site was marked by an irregularly-shaped stone marker with a crude etching of a flying saucer which disappeared in 1973, about the time the grave had been disturbed in an attempt apparently to dig it up. Some locals blamed UFO researchers, others blamed an apparent government cover-up. Someone placed another marker on the grave in 2010 and in 2012 the new marker was stolen.
This story has been repeated in many UFO books and magazines, and was the basis for the 1986 film “The Aurora Encounter”and attempts by various investigators to verify or discredit the story over the years have proved fruitless. The local cemetery association has denied all requests to exhume the alleged “alien” grave. The cemetery has been in use since 1861 and is the resting place of many locals and veterans from the Civil War all the way to Vietnam. The cemetery association also points out that the older graves are not well marked and attempts to exhume the “alien” may well disturb the final resting place of innocent local ancestors.
We visited the Aurora cemetery on a sleepy Sunday morning. The cemetery is still very much in use and is well-kept and maintained. To find the grave you walk in the entrance and walk to your right. There is a large tree towards the front of the graveyard by the fence and two trees a short distance away. One of those two trees is a large oak tree with a crooked lower branch; the alleged alien grave is under it. Since two markers have been both stolen, today the grave is marked simply with a large boulder.
Not much to really see here, although some of the older grave markers are works of art in and of themselves. If you visit please take photos and nothing else out of respect to the local residents.
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