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October 23, 1954, Trondes, Meurthe-et-Moselle:

Reference for this case: 23-Oct-54-Trondes.
Please cite this reference in any correspondence with me regarding this case.

Summary:

Radar magazine for November 7, 1954, published two photos of a shaggy, bearded man, explaining that the residents of Troussey thought they were capturing a "Martian", but that it was only a beet picker.

Scan.

Radar told:

Yellow, orange and green gleams rose, choked and reborn among the great secular trees of the forest of Tronde. They seemed to be alive suddenly, their high branches, still heavy with scorched leaves, drawing on the velvet of the night broad gestures of distress, the calls of the drowned.

Mr. Lelu, egg cup maker by trade and who, from Lay-Saint-Rémy returned to his home in Troussey, a village at the limit of the departments of Meuse and Meurthe-et-Moselle, stopped his car. Maybe a fire? He dismounted and fearlessly walked to the edge of the woods. The flames leapt at a steady pace, too steady. And suddenly M. Lelu bowed like an infantryman surprised by a patrol saluting the first enemy salvo. Twenty meters in front of him, a sort of vaulted giant, HALF OF THE BODY DISAPPEARING UNDER FLOATS OF BLONDE HAIR, was busy around the flames of curious colors.

A priest would have seen the devil and shouted: "Vade retro Satanas!".

The egg cup maker saw a saucer and concluded: "A Martian!". There was no doubt about it, the individual corresponded well to one of these beings whose description the press publishes every day. As for the flames, by Jove! they came from a saucer, from the Martian saucer!

And while, fleeing the paralyzing green ray, he crushed his accelerator, Mr. Lelu was almost convinced to have seen the shining edges of the machine and the classic glass porthole without which there is no "unidentified" craft. When he arrived in the village, he was even quite sure of it...

He alerts the police, then his neighbors. A first group of armed men formed. Heroism is not an empty word. Other men of good will joined the first.

Go for the Martians!

At the edge of the woods, under the orders of the gendarmes "wearing the insignia of their functions", the fierce combatants deployed as skirmishers. The flames were still there, the Martian too.

He didn't smell the enemy approach. Failing to emit a green ray, he only emitted vehement protest when he was thrown to the ground and tied up neatly.

Did the people of Troussey get a Martian? No, it was only a Polish farm worker currently unemployed named Alexandre Ronnejki, moreover half-mad, who had neither shaved nor combed his hair for months. For now, he was fueling a wood fire with handfuls of salt.

The gendarmes nevertheless fined him for lack of identity papers and violation of the law on foreigners.

So many people to arrest him! Martian or not, he still fell from out of the blue sky!

In the spring of 1955, the American Gray Barker indicated in his bulletin about flying saucers that in the panic that began to spread about flying saucers in France in 1954, a sugar beet rammer, Alexandre Ronnejki, who needed a haircut, had been attacked by a crowd who thought he was a hairy "Saucerian".

In 1996, in an addition to their regional catalog, the CNEGU ufology group noted that on October 23, 1954 (uncertain date), Mr. Lelu, an egg-maker in Troussey, came from Lay-Saint-Rémy, driving home by car on the Departmental Road D 101 passing through the forest of Trondes.

Arriving at a bend, he saw two phosphorescent spots near the wood. He slowed down, thinking of car headlights, and approached.

He then "noticed" a blonde, motionless "Venusian" from the back. "Believing he was in the presence of a Uranian, he went to the station of Pagny-sur-Meuse and called the gendarmes of Void", who went to the scene and saw the being near a fire, instead of a saucer.

He was having fun throwing salt at it, to make sparks. The gendarmes grabbed the being, who turned out to be a Polish farm hand, a man named Romejko, 48, employed by Pierron, at the Palamex farm near Troyon.

He explained to the gendarmes that having left his employer, he had no more money to dress and have his hair cut; he was a little unbalanced, he had been out for three days, having traveled nearly 60 km through fields and woods.

He was released, but with a fine for no presentation of ID, and another for lighting a fire at the edge of the wood.

CNEGU said that this came from an article of the newspaper Le Républicain Lorrain for October 23, 1954, by a communication of A. Chevrier to Michel Figuet in 1986, and that the newspaper article was not found in the library of Nancy in 1996 by Raoul Robé of the CNEGU, and that the date given to the article is therefore perhaps erroneous.

This did not deter Albert Rosales from publishing his own version of the case, the explanations being changed into a "claim" of "the harassed owner of the field" that the mysterious blond figure was a Polish farmer, this "however was never confirmed." This alternate ending then appeared on two US ufology websites copying Albert Rosales' summary.

Reports:

[Ref. rdr1:] "RADAR" MAGAZINE:

Scan.

MEUSE

The residents of TROUSSEY
CAUGHT THEIR "MARTIAN"

... it was only a
beets picker.

The MILLION of RADAR
is still THERE!

Scan.

THE BEET-PICKER MARTIAN

Yellow, orange and green gleams rose, choked and reborn among the great secular trees of the forest of Tronde. They seemed to be alive suddenly, their high branches, still heavy with scorched leaves, drawing on the velvet of the night broad gestures of distress, the calls of the drowned.

Mr. Lelu, egg cup maker by trade and who, from Lay-Saint-Rémy returned to his home in Troussey, a village at the limit of the departments of Meuse and Meurthe-et-Moselle, stopped his car. Maybe a fire? He dismounted and fearlessly walked to the edge of the woods. The flames leapt at a steady pace, too steady. And suddenly M. Lelu bowed like an infantryman surprised by a patrol saluting the first enemy salvo. Twenty meters in front of him, a sort of vaulted giant, HALF OF THE BODY DISAPPEARING UNDER FLOATS OF BLONDE HAIR, was busy around the flames of curious colors.

A priest would have seen the devil and shouted: "Vade retro Satanas!".

The egg cup maker saw a saucer and concluded: "A Martian!". There was no doubt about it, the individual corresponded well to one of these beings whose description the press publishes every day. As for the flames, by Jove! they came from a saucer, from the Martian saucer!

And while, fleeing the paralyzing green ray, he crushed his accelerator, Mr. Lelu was almost convinced to have seen the shining edges of the machine and the classic glass porthole without which there is no "unidentified" craft. When he arrived in the village, he was even quite sure of it...

He alerts the police, then his neighbors. A first group of armed men formed. Heroism is not an empty word. Other men of good will joined the first.

Go for the Martians!

At the edge of the woods, under the orders of the gendarmes "wearing the insignia of their functions", the fierce combatants deployed as skirmishers. The flames were still there, the Martian too.

He didn't smell the enemy approach. Failing to emit a green ray, he only emitted vehement protest when he was thrown to the ground and tied up neatly.

Did the people of Troussey get a Martian? No, it was only a Polish farm worker currently unemployed named Alexandre Ronnejki, moreover half-mad, who had neither shaved nor combed his hair for months. For now, he was fueling a wood fire with handfuls of salt.

The gendarmes nevertheless fined him for lack of identity papers and violation of the law on foreigners.

So many people to arrest him! Martian or not, he still fell from out of the blue sky!

[Ref. tbg1:] NEWSPAPER "THE BOSTON GLOBE":

Scan.

France Abuzz Over Saucers

Craze Matches Witch-Hunting

PARIS (Reuters) -- Frenchmen have taken to the flying saucer craze with all the enthusiasm that their medieval forebears devoted to witch-hunting.

Not a day passes without reports from all over France of "flying saucers," "flying cigars," "flying mushrooms," and "flying bells" piloted by 20th century sorcerers.

Villagers seize shot guns and pitchforks and sally forth valiantly to meet any saucer reported landing nearby. Police spend hours following up reports.

Flying saucer stories and speculation about their origin fill the national press. They have even driven sex from the front pages of some popular weekly newspapers. One has offered a reward of 1.000,000 francs (about $2800) to the reader who sends in the first authentic photograph of a flying saucer.

The Mayor of Chateauneuf-du-Pape, a wine village of 1600 people has decreed that any flying saucer which lands in his village will be impounded.

Flying saucer stories come from all levels and ages of the population.

A select few claim that they have actually seen the creatures who pilot the saucers over France. They generally agree that the creatures, usually referred to as Martians, are shorter than human beings in size and appear to be very hairy. Most of these creatures, if they speak, utter unintelligible sounds, but some have made themselves understood in French and even Russian.

Thirteen year-old Gilbert Lafay [sic], of Chateaubriant, said that he saw in a field a flying saucer piloted by a man who spoke to him in French.

Baker's assistant Pierre Lucas of Loctudy claimed that he met a four-foot flying saucer pilot with a hairy oval face and eyes as big as crow's eggs.

A workman, Louis Ujvari, met a flying saucer pilot near Epinal who spoke Russian and asked how far it was from the German frontier.


Saucers with sirens

The saucers seem generally to be piloted by males. One exception was reported by a schoolmaster, Mr. Martin, who said he met two beautiful Martian girls on the island of Oloron [sic] off the French Atlantic Coast. They were about four feet, four inches, and wore leather helmets, gloves and boots.

The strange visitors from outer space are said to be equipped with "ray guns" which stop witnesses in their track with an electric shock effect and temporarily immobilize automobile engines, but no really unfriendly act by them has so far been reported.

Frenchmen are less well disposed towards their uninvited guests and some accidents have occurred in the hunt for Martians. At Sinceny, Jean Faisan fired two shots at his farmer neighbor, Maurice Ruan, who was repairing his car one night, narrowly missing his head but damaging the radiator.

Faisan explained that when he saw a figure illuminated by two lamps he thought he was in the presence of a "Martian repairing his flying saucer." He ran for his shotgun and fired.

In the village of Troussey, sugar beet gatherer Alexandre Ronneji, who had not had a haircut for several months, was manhandled by a crowd who mistook him for a hairy Martian.

At Tain-l'Hermitage, in central France, a wineyard worker decided that his neighbor, M. Neyret, looked "extraordinary" in the dusk and attacked him savagely, beating him so severely that one ear was torn off. Only then did he find that Neyret was not a Martian.

Press cartoonists and practical jokers are having a field day over the whole affair. Newspapers and popular weekly magazines fill their cartoon pages with saucer jokes.


Flying Saucer-ers

A worker at a Paris railway depot started his mates on a Martian hunt by capering about in a welder's helmet with a green light inside.

But the king of the saucer jesters was a retired miner of the village of Beuvry-Les-Bethunes, near Lille, who built some flying saucers in his backyard. He made his "saucers" out of gray paper on the fire-balloon principles and lit a paraffin-soaked rag at the base. The warm air lifted the "saucers", some of them over nine feet in diameter, and off they went with the wind showing orange and yellow lights from the flames.

Police found him out after one of his "saucers" had landed near a haystack and almost set it on fire.

Attempts to explain the saucer phenomena have varied from "mass hallucination" to a suggestion that they are new experimental aircraft built in cigar form which can take off vertically.

Another theory is that, under certain atmospheric conditions, exhaust fuel from jet aircraft solidifies and may form "saucer" shapes. It has been said to reach the ground in the form of a rubbery material which dissolved on being touched. Such a material has often be reported to have been found on saucer landing sites.

[Ref. gbr1] GRAY BARKER:

The panic began to spread. In the village of Troussey, sugar beets gatherer Alexandre Ronnejki, who needed a haircut, was attacked by a crowd who thought he was a hairy saucerian.

[Ref. lgs1:] LOREN GROSS:

People's nerves still on edge. A mob in the French village of Troussey attacked a suspicious figure believing it a Martian. The figure turned out to be a farm laborer by the name of Alexandre Ronnejki who made the mistake of not not getting a haircut for some time. The fate of the poor fellow was not mentioned in press accounts, but in another case we know there was an injury (See news story).

[Ref. cnu1:] CNEGU - "LES MYSTERES DE L'EST":

Scan.

Case F/00/55/54 10 23 (01) forest of Trondes (55):

On October 23, 1954 (uncertain date), Mr. Lelu, chicken farmer at Troussey (55), came from Lay St Rémy, and was driving home by the RD 101 of Trondes. At a bend, he saw two phosphorescent spots near the wood. He slowed down, thinking of car headlights, and approached. He noticed from behind a blond "Venusian", motionless. Believing he was in the presence of a Ouranian, he went to the station of Pagny sur Meuse and called the gendarmes of Void. They went to the scene and saw the being near a fire, not near a saucer. He amused himself by throwing salt at it, to make sparks. The gendarmes grabbed the being. He was a Polish agricultural worker, a 48-year-old named Romejko, employed at Pierron's at the Palamex farm near Troyon. He explained to the gendarmes that, having left his employer, he had no more money to clothe himself and have his hair cut; he was, this was verified, a little unbalanced. He had been gone for three days, and had traveled nearly 60 km through fields and woods. He was released, but with a fine for non presentation of ID, and another for lighting a fire at the edge of the wood.

Explanation: misinterpretation with a man around a fire magnified by the press.

Source: Républicain Lorrain du 23/10/1954, communication d'A.Chevrier à M.Figuet en 1986 (réfèrence non retrouvée à la bibliothèque de Nancy en 1996 par R.Robé: la date serait-elle erronée?).

[Ref. ars1:] ALBERT ROSALES:

196.

Location. Trondes, France

Date: October 23 1954

Time: afternoon

Baker M Lelu was in his vehicle on Route 101 and had arrived at a bend on the road when he spotted two phosphorescent points of light near a glade. He approached the area thinking it was another car when he saw a tall blond haired man standing immobile in the field. Thinking that the figure was an extraterrestrial (he thought a Venusian?) he drove away from the area in order to obtain additional witnesses. (Later the harassed owner of the field claimed that the mysterious blond figure was a Polish farmer). This however was never confirmed.

HC addendum

Source: Raoul Robe, Regional Catalogue

Type: C?

[Ref. djn1:] DONALD JOHNSON:

Encounters with Aliens on this Day

October 23

1954 - On this afternoon baker M. Lelu was in his vehicle on Route 101 in Trondes, France and had come to a bend on the road when he spotted two phosphorescent points of light near a glade. He approached the area, thinking it was another car, when he saw a tall blond haired man standing immobile in a nearby field. Thinking that the figure might be an extraterrestrial he drove away from the area in order to get additional witnesses. Later, the harassed owner of the field claimed that the mysterious blond figure was merely a Polish farmer, but this was never confirmed. (Source: Albert S. Rosales, Humanoid Contact Database 1954, citing Raoul Robe, Regional Catalogue).

[Ref. tai1:] "THINK ABOUT IT" WEBSITE:

Location: Trondes, France

Date: October 23 1954

Time: afternoon

Baker M. Lelu was in his vehicle on Route 101 and had arrived at a bend on the road when he spotted two phosphorescent points of light near a glade. He approached the area thinking it was another car when he saw a tall blond haired man standing immobile in the field. Thinking that the figure was an extraterrestrial (he thought a Venusian?) he drove away from the area in order to obtain additional witnesses. (Later the harassed owner of the field claimed that the mysterious blond figure was a Polish farmer). This however was never confirmed.

Source: Raoul Robe, Regional Catalogue

[Ref. nip1:] "THE NICAP WEBSITE":

*Oct. 23, 1954 - On this afternoon baker M. Lelu was in his vehicle on Route 101 in Trondes, France and had come to a bend on the road when he spotted two phosphorescent points of light near a glade. He approached the area, thinking it was another car, when he saw a tall blond haired man standing immobile in a nearby field. Thinking that the figure might be an extraterrestrial he drove away from the area in order to get additional witnesses. Later, the harassed owner of the field claimed that the mysterious blond figure was merely a Polish farmer, but this was never confirmed. (Source: Albert S. Rosales, Humanoid Contact Database 1954, citing Raoul Robe, Regional Catalogue).

[Ref. dcn1:] DOMINIQUE CAUDRON:

In Troussey (Meuse), the courageous inhabitants helped by the constabulary captured and tied a "Martian" who was merely one Polish hirsute beet picker who made a camp fire in the countryside.

Explanations:

Map.

Negative case, misinterpretation, vagabond and campfire.

Keywords:

(These keywords are only to help queries and are not implying anything.)

Trondes, Meurthe-et-Moselle, Troussey, road, field, daytime, car, Lelu, blonde, tall, man, venusian, hair, headlights, baker

Sources:

[----] indicates sources that are not yet available to me.

Document history:

Version: Created/Changed by: Date: Change Description:
0.1 Patrick Gross December 6, 2004 First published.
1.0 Patrick Gross January 24, 2010 Conversion from HTML to XHTML Strict. First formal version. Addition [djn1].
1.1 Patrick Gross October 10, 2014 Addition [tai1].
1.2 Patrick Gross October 23, 2014 Addition [nip1].
1.3 Patrick Gross December 8, 2016 Additions [gbr1], [ubk1].
1.4 Patrick Gross October 24, 2019 Additions [cnu1], Summary. Explanations changed, were "Not looked for yet. Confusion."
1.5 Patrick Gross December 18, 2019 Addition [tbg1].
1.6 Patrick Gross August 30, 2021 In [rdr1], addition of page 2. In the Summary, addition or [rdr1]'s page 2 story.

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