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The Mexican Issue

Mexico Is Spooky

I've been an investigator of paranormal and alien phenomena in Mexico since 1974, when I founded one of the first ufology groups in Monterrey. My expertise has led me to participate in international television and radio programs about paranormal and...

by Santiago Yturria, Gabi Sifre; Illustrations: Hilda Pal
Jun 1 2008, 12:00am

I’ve been an investigator of paranormal and alien phenomena in Mexico since 1974, when I founded one of the first ufology groups in Monterrey. My expertise has led me to participate in international television and radio programs about paranormal and extraterrestrial incidents. I currently work as a consultant to Maussan Productions, founded by Mexico’s leading ufologist, Jaime Maussan.

Alien-phenomena and paranormal investigation in Mexico is currently in its prime. There is an awakening of consciousness and belief among the Mexican people, media, and government. We are establishing important precedents and unheard-of advances in the study of these unexplainable incidents. The conditions for future contact are good. 
Vice asked me to summarize the top nine most fascinating paranormal occurrences that have happened in Mexico, and I said, “.”

In 1966, engineer Harry de la Peña was commissioned by the Petróleos Mexicanos company to locate oil fields near the Bolsón de Mapimí river basin. The nature of his job required him to communicate with the rest of the brigades via radio. However, the transmission of frequencies was impeded by some mysterious but powerful interference. Intrigued, de la Peña tried other locations but the strange phenomenon persisted. After experiments and tests, he concluded that this “zone” possessed an inexplicably high electromagnetic energy index.

Found between the states of Durango, Chihuahua, and Coahuila, it is believed this expanse of desert contains enormous mineral deposits, which seem to generate potent electromagnetic fields that impede radio waves. This magnetism also causes compasses to fail, and many believe this area attracts more meteorites than any other part of the world.

In July 1970, NASA launched an Athena rocket into space from the Green River base in Utah to study the upper atmosphere. The capsule was slated to land in White Sands, New Mexico, but it was curiously diverted to what came to be known as the Zone of Silence. NASA alerted the Mexican government about the unexpected landing, cautioning that it contained the highly radioactive element cobalt-57. Mexico granted NASA permission to search for the rocket, and NASA sent a large contingent of North American scientists and soldiers.

Using the cleanup of radioactive chemicals as cover, NASA extended its stay after realizing the zone’s scientific potential. According to investigators, NASA had discovered that the region generates a huge electromagnetic vortex ideal for launching rockets into space. Mexican president Luis Echevarría denied this request and they were ordered to evacuate the area within 72 hours. Many mysteries still remain in the Zone of Silence, which is likened to other enigmatic places like the Bermuda Triangle. It is also said that the zone houses an extraterrestrial base and that its large magnetic vortex is used as a dimensional energy portal through which UFOs leave and arrive. The zone will continue to be an enigma until its anomalies are explained.

In June 2007, workers at a veterinary ranch in Metepec found that some birds they were breeding had been mysteriously killed. Fearing that some hungry rat was the cause of these attacks, they set up traps and waited. The following afternoon, Angel Nuñez, a veterinary assistant, found “something” lodged in the trap. He tossed it into a tanning solution without looking, figuring it was one of the pesky Egyptian rats that sometimes found their way to the ranch.

The next day it was discovered that the “rat” was really a small life-form with humanoid characteristics. Angel informed his colleagues immediately and they examined the strange creature, which exhibited a morphology neither had ever seen. The being was around 28 inches tall, with a large head, eyes, ears, nose, mouth, incisors, hands with five fingers, and, most intriguingly, a tail.

Francisco García, an employee at the ranch, recalled this about the incident: “It was a chaneque! They are elves that exist in the underworld and go around playing pranks. I’ve seen it when it comes out one side of the gate and looks out at the street. Then it retreats quickly when it notices I’m watching. This time we’ve trapped one and proved they’re real.”

The strange animal is still on display at the ranch as testimony to the existence of chaneques. Studies conducted on the body have proved inconclusive and, for now, the enigma of the humanoid being of Metepec continues.

In the early hours of January 16, 2004, Officer Leonardo Samaniego was doing his rounds in the municipality of Guadalupe, Nuevo León. Leonardo was turning on Alamo Street in his squad car when he saw a dark object fall from a tree and levitate above the ground. He switched on the emergency lights to see what was in front of him.

“It was a woman dressed in a black tunic and hat,” reports Leonardo. “She fell from the tree but didn’t touch the ground—she just floated. When I shined the lights on her, she turned and looked at me with an evil glare. She covered her eyes as if the light bothered her. She had dark skin, two huge black eyes without lashes, and was draped in a black cape and a hat. There wasn’t a broom or anything like that, but she flew and jumped on me! She was a witch!”

A few seconds later, the being jumped onto the car. Leonardo attempted to escape by putting the car in reverse before radioing the police station, asking for backup while the diabolic being clung to the windshield like a lamprey and tried to claw its way through the glass. Leonardo lost control, hit a fence, and was knocked unconscious. Soon after, ambulances arrived and police canvassed the area, believing some gang or delinquent had attacked him, but no evidence of this was found.

The media tagged the incident as the “Witch of Guadalupe” while an internal investigation was conducted. Leonardo was drug-tested and given a psychological evaluation, but the results revealed he was mentally sound and not under the influence of alcohol or narcotics. The secretary of public security concluded that the incident was real, and the case remains unsolved.

El Niño Fidencio is venerated as a saint, divine figure, and messenger of peace in Mexico. Originally from Guanajuato, Fidencio S. Constantino was an exceptional healer and spiritual guide. Blessed with great charisma and powers of persuasion, Fidencio (who was nicknamed El Niño—“The Child”—because of his baby face) managed to form a worship group despite barely being able to read or write. The group still has thousands of followers 50 years after his death.

Fidencio practiced healing—both physical and mental—since his youth. In 1921, his fame grew rapidly and his believers considered him illuminated and a saint, spreading word of his miraculous healings. Years later President Plutarco Elías Calles visited Fidencio and partook in a ritual involving Castile roses and pomade. After this, the country-born Fidencio was a figure at the national level.

Fidencio’s activity flourished for more than a decade and he received hundreds of followers who believed he was capable of miraculous cures, exorcisms, and blessings. However, the exhausting devotion and overwhelming activity affected his health and, in 1935, he showed symptoms of an illness not even he could cure. A few years later he died. His followers grieved and could not believe their spiritual guide was gone forever.

During a celebration of Fidencio’s feast day in Mexico, a couple found themselves visiting his former house, which today is a museum dedicated to his memory. They had cameras and took various photos, one of which depicted a room with a painting on the wall. Looking closer, they realized the photo showed a strange face that wasn’t present in person. They wondered who it was, so they decided to show the photo to the people in charge of the museum, who proclaimed, “That is the face of El Niño Fidencio!”

The news traveled among the faithful, who were sure that Fidencio had returned to the town, appearing in the painting as a signal that he was still among them. To this day he is venerated and prayed to throughout the country for his healing powers.

Mexico is a country of great religious fervor. One of the clearest examples of this is the case of the Weeping Virgin in Monterrey, Nuevo León.

In a house in the Nuevas Colonias subdivision, Hermila Carrasco receives daily visits from believers who come to pray to a framed image of the Virgin Mary. The picture is famous for tears coming out of its eyes, which then slide outside its case in a miraculous way. Paranormal investigators and people close to the church have studied this phenomenon, but no one can explain it.

This image was brought from Colombia to Hermila in the 90s. Soon after, tears began to fall and it was considered a manifestation of divine origin. An aroma of roses accompanies these manifestations, and sometimes when people offer roses to her, sacred images appear on the petals. Faces of Christ or saints suddenly materialize, to the astonishment of the believers.

On one occasion the image cried blood, which many believed to be an omen that called for intensification in prayers. Another day after a prayer session, a worshiper moved closer to the Virgin for a photo. When the photo was developed she appeared with her eyes closed. It was an event that provoked discomfort among the believers.

The Catholic Church remains quiet in regard to the case of the Weeping Virgin of Monterrey. It has left the case to evolve on its own, and the believers to express their fervor freely.

Aída Petite-Jean is a painter who also considers herself a medium or channeler with the ability to communicate with entities from beyond, which in turn manifest themselves in her paintings.

One day early in Aída’s career, she was working on a new painting when a spectral face appeared on the canvas out of nowhere. Unsettled, she scrutinized the features, asking herself whether it was a true apparition. It was a diffused human face of very subtle color with two big eyes. At that moment, she felt as if the enigmatic countenance was speaking to her telekinetically. From this point on she resolved to use the face as the basis for all her work. Her paintings consist of strange faces, both male and female, that express suffering, sadness, and evil.

Once Aída accepted her newfound abilities, multiple beings began appearing in her work. On one occasion, five different faces appeared, leading Aída to believe she was representing a scene that came from hell itself. She claims that some figures seem to move, as is the case of a depiction in which a small being is trying to escape from the clenched claws of a larger being. Her paranormal experiences continue to this day, and she feels satisfied by being an artistic tie to the beyond.

On March 21, 1992, a humanoid figure appeared floating next to the Sun Pyramid during the equinox celebration in Tehotihuacán, interrupting the ceremony and causing a commotion. The strange form was approximately two meters tall, had wings, and was hovering at a low height. Some people said that it was the reappearance of Quetzalcoatl over his holy land, affirming ancient prophecies. Quetzalcoatl, the Feathered Serpent, is an Aztec god of the sky and creation that has deep roots within Mexico’s indigenous culture.

The media was perpetually saturated with reports, photos, and testimonies of flying humanoids leading up to the turn of the millennium. One afternoon in March 2000, Salvador Guerrero, a known sky-watcher, was shooting video on the roof of his building in the Agricola Oriental neighborhood. He noticed a dark point in the sky directly above him and zoomed in. It was another floating humanoid, which quickly disappeared behind a nearby building.

Around the same time another sky-watcher named Amado Marquez recorded a similar winged creature in Cuernavaca. Amado kept the video secret out of fear of being mocked by his colleagues, but he decided to go public when he found out about Salvador’s sighting through an article in the La Prensa. Some people believe the flying creatures come from the underworld, appearing in these difficult times with a determined purpose. Others say they are aliens looking to abduct common people. There also exists a belief that they are from the future, other dimensions, or parallel worlds. Whatever they are, it’s a sign of a major change in the times.

On May 11, 2004, it was publicly announced that the Mexican Air Force had encountered 11 unidentified flying objects during a surveillance flight in the state of Campeche a week earlier. What’s more, this encounter had been filmed. The video of the confrontation was shown during a press conference led by Jaime Maussan. In an unprecedented move, Jaime was authorized to interview the members of the crew who were allowed to speak freely about the experience. Captain Magdaleno Castañon, Lieutenant Mario Adrián Vasquez, and Lieutenant Gremán Marín Ramirez recalled the encounter on national television. It was the first time high-ranking military men were allowed to speak about extraterrestrial activity. They commented on the video, which captured the crew’s confusion and anguish when they realized they were surrounded by luminous objects of unknown origin with undetermined intentions. The sighting, also known as the SEDENA case, is still unsolved. Numerous investigations and official reports have been conducted to no avail. To date, everything indicates that the alien encounter was a real event of an unknown origin that constitutes an authentic watershed in worldwide ufology.

In the summer of 1994, José Martinez was traveling on the beautiful ancient road to the Sierra Rayones in Montemorelos with some friends. As he did every weekend, José took his camera to shoot his friends and the scenery. After a few hours he returned to the ranch for some food while his friends continued to hang out by the river.

Here is his firsthand account of what happened next: “I had my camera around my neck and was getting the charcoal ready for the grill. All of a sudden I sensed a strong brightness on my left side that drew my attention. I turned around to see what it was and in front of me there was a metallic object quietly floating at a low height and reflecting the sunlight.

“I thought it might have been a practical joke by my friends—that maybe they had thrown a pot or something in the air to scare me. But after a few seconds the object was still in the air, balancing itself lightly. It was a big disc about six meters in size. Intuitively, I grabbed my camera and took some pictures.”

José couldn’t remember exactly what happened after he took the second photograph—he experienced some peculiar amnesia—but didn’t give the memory lapse much thought or tell anyone about it until a week later, when the photos were developed. The two shots he had taken were extraordinary, showing the flying saucer in all its splendor and majesty, almost as if it had posed for the camera.

José shared the experience with his friends that afternoon. They were disturbed by the clarity of the two photos and congratulated him on having had such a unique experience. The story soon reached the media, and the photos were published on the cover of a Mexican magazine about aliens. More than a decade has passed since the incident at Montemorelos, but the question remains: What happened that afternoon after José Martinez took the second photograph? Surely the secret is somewhere in his mind.