A Massachusetts history museum has lent some validity to a neighboring family’s claims that they were abducted multiple times by aliens in the late 1960s.
Thomas Reed claims he was first abducted in 1966 at age 6, along with his brother, from their home in Sheffield, taken inside a UFO and shown a projection of a willow tree.
Reed claims they were abducted again the following year and then later found in their driveway by their mother, who had been searching for the missing boys on horseback.
The boys’ mother and grandmother were abducted along with the boys while driving their car two years later and taken to meet two ant-like figures and then placed in a cage before finding themselves back in their car, Reed claims.
The Great Barrington Historical Society & Museum formally inducted Reed’s alien abduction stories, possibly becoming the first “mainstream” historical society in the U.S. to declare a UFO encounter to be historical fact, reported the Boston Globe.
“It means that we believe it is true,” said Debbie Oppermann, director of the historical society.
Three of the board’s nine members “strongly opposed” the decision, but Oppermann said “it passed with consensus.”
“I know we’re going to get a lot of backlash,” Opperman said. “We’re going to get hammered, but we have given it an awful lot of thought — and based on the evidence we’ve been given, we believe this is a significant and true event.”
The historical society was most interested in the 1969 encounter because dozens of people in the area reported seeing a disk-shaped craft performing acrobatic maneuvers shortly before the family reported their abduction.
The 55-year-old Reed, who speaks at UFO conventions throughout the U.S., said he appreciates the historic recognition.
“They took a stand and have chosen to recognize something that many people in their position would have stepped away from,” said Reed, who now lives in Tennessee. “We know what we saw, and it was not local. It was definitely off-world — and it affected my whole family, and there has been a lot of post-traumatic stress.”
Reed said neighbors teased him and his relatives, and the eventually moved a few miles away to Great Barrington.
“It hasn’t helped us in any way to talk about,” Reed said. “We’re not making any money. This has tarnished our life. This has smeared our family’s name. It can only hurt you when someone Googles your name.”
“But when you have something extraordinary like this happen to you,” he said, “how do you keep a lid on it?”
Watch this interview with Reed posted online by Johnny Tortuga: