What’s out there?

[dropcap]UFO[/dropcap]s, Bigfoot topic of Weirton man’s class

Ninety percent of reports filed about unidentified flying objects can be identified, according to Weirton resident Fred Saluga, a longtime UFO investigator who is teaching a series of free classes on the subject beginning Monday at Eastern Gateway Community College.

Those, he said, could be meteors, stars or planets, for example.

Seven percent “would be government stuff we’re not aware of,” says the state director of MUFON of West Virginia.

MUFON, an acronym for Mutual UFO Network Inc., is a nonprofit corporation founded in 1969 that’s dedicated through its volunteers to resolving the scientific enigma known collectively as UFOs.

The other 3 percent?

“We really don’t know what they are,” admits Saluga, who says the subject of UFOs is one that has fascinated people for a long time, although most of what the public knows about UFOs comes from the silver screen.

His 10-week free class from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Mondays starting tomorrow and continuing through May 20 is a way for its participants to “learn the truth from research that has been conducted from the last 50 years to gain a better understanding of the UFO phenomena,” according to Saluga.

The class is his second go-round on the subject, as one last fall, also at EGCC, attracted about 25 participants, more women than men, the women were “into it.”

“Many of them had seen UFOs when they were young but didn’t want to say anything for fear of someone saying something to them,” he said.

Saluga’s breakdown of class sessions begins with an introduction to the UFO phenomena, past and present attitudes and a history of UFOs.

Other topics are:

A definition of UFOs, their types and descriptions and the difference between them and conventional aircraft;

UFO sightings by government, presidents, celebrities and astronauts along with the 10 most famous UFO sightings made and why people don’t report them;

UFO reports with students assigned to make up a UFO sighting and file a report;

Alien abductions; and

Cattle and human mutilations.

Two classes will feature guests speakers. Brian Seech of Beaver County, Pa., will discuss “Bigfoot and His Connection to UFOs,” and Sam Colisomo, state section director of MUFON of Pennsylvania, will talk about UFO investigations.

Beyond the class, Saluga hopes to bring exposure to what MUFON is and how area residents can get involved, either by not being afraid to report a UFO sighting – reports are confidential, he emphasizes – or by being a volunteer.

MUFON‘s mission is “the scientific study of UFOs for the benefit of humanity” with its four goals, according to the website, listed as to investigate UFO sightings and collect the data in the MUFON database for use by researchers worldwide; to promote research on UFOs to discover the true nature of the phenomenon, with an eye toward scientific breakthroughs; to educate the public on the UFO phenomenon and its potential impact on society; and to ensure the economic viability of MUFON to achieve its mission and goals.

Saluga refers to the February report by MUFON that logs a total of 452 around-the-globe reports of UFOs with the United States having the most at 381. A state-by-state breakdown shows Ohio with 12 for February, West Virginia with two and Pennsylvania with 11.

A former law enforcement official, Saluga is attempting to contact people who live in West Virginia or on its borders who may have information on the following:

Past and current UFO sightings and landings in the area;

Unexplained animal (Bigfoot) or humanoid sightings in the area of a UFO sighting;

Anyone who has experienced missing times or believes that they were abducted or knows someone who was abducted;

Anyone who has experienced any type of poltergeist or paranormal activity after a UFO sighting;

Conspiracy theories pertaining to UFOs or UFO-related activity; and

Cattle or human mutilations associated with UFO activity.

Saluga can be contacted by phone at (304) 914-3287 or by e-mail at mufon_of_west_virginia@yahoo.com or or fsaluga@aol.com.

“We want people to know MUFON is here,” Saluga said. “We need volunteers a