Rotterdam man keeps an eye peeled for UFOs

James G. Bouck Jr., family man and retired state auditor who lives in Rotterdam, is convinced we're

The sky is so much more than a sea of serene celestial bodies for Rotterdam resident James G. Bouck Jr.

The recently retired state auditor admits he keeps at least one eye focused upward at all times, as he never knows when something out of the ordinary will wander into view.

The 58-year-old husband and father of four, after all, is more than an admirer of all things cosmic.

He has a strong hunch that we’re not alone.

“The thought of all those stars being out there and nobody using them but us has always been mind-boggling to me,” said the Schenectady County native, who serves as state director for the Mutual UFO Network, a worldwide organization of volunteer UFO enthusiasts, researchers and field investigators.

“The way I look at it, when God created the solar system and the many universes, why would he go through the trouble of creating those universes and go through the trouble of creating all those stars and planets if he was just going to settle on Earth alone? He’d sort of be limiting his own powers. I think there has to be life on other planets,” said Bouck.

He estimates about 100 such sightings are reported statewide each year.

When a report is made to MUFON, it is funneled directly to Bouck and is then sent to a section director for further investigation. The group’s goal is not necessarily to prove that UFOs are extraterrestrial, but to try to determine just what is out there.

Most sightings can be explained as a constellation, weather balloons, certain cloud formations, an airplane whizzing by or a shooting star or meteor streaking across the night, explained Bouck. On rare occasions, however, the phenomenon can’t be explained away that easily, even by experts sporting the most sophisticated tracking tools and uncommonly keen eyesight.

Bouck takes his work seriously, and though he’ll laugh with you, he doesn’t necessarily appreciate jokes about little green men and aluminum hats. His job as a ufologist is serious business; he is on a constant mission to help people make sense of the most mind-boggling experiences of their lives.

His passion for scrutinizing the sky can be traced back to his youth.

“I started with this interest in my junior high school years, and I finally saw my first UFO just five years ago. I was sitting in my backyard and thought I saw something unusual in the sky,” he said.

“I had no camera or binoculars to verify what it could be. So I always sat out there with them every time since. In a few weeks, I thought I saw it again and looked through the binoculars. I quickly took some pictures and it was an exact craft that a witness I had been working with had been able to see many times and had videotaped in Saratoga and Ticonderoga.

“We had that videotape analyzed, and the object has officially been declared unidentified.”

The same object has been reported as recently as last month.

Read the rest of the story in Thursday’s Daily Gazette.

Categories: Life and Arts

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