Howard Menger Passes
Menger with a model of a free energy device
Famed UFO contactee Howard Menger died at his home in Vero Beach Florida on February 25th, 8 days after his 87th birthday. He is survived by Connie Menger, his wife of over 50 years, four children, (two by a former marriage) and many grandchildren.
At the age of 19, Menger enlisted in the Army and saw service in the Pacific during WWII in a flamethrower unit flushing the Japanese out of caves and other hideouts. He was wounded and received the Purple Heart. Retuning to his native New Jersey in 1946, Menger started a sign painting business and a family.
This changed in 1956, when he appeared on the Long John Nebel radio show, along with contactee George Van Tassel. He talked about contacts with space brothers (and more specifically -sisters) who appeared to him beginning when he was ten years old. Some of his later published descriptions sound distinctly sexual in nature, although he carefully couched them in language that could be construed as platonic.
He also started taking pictures of the space people and their ships, although most who saw the photos say that they are quite indistinct. On August 4th of 1956, Menger said he was invited on board one of the flying saucers. The next month he said that the space people took him for a joyride where he saw alien civilizations on other planets and structures on the Moon.
Later that year, an attractive young woman named Connie Weber appeared at one of Menger’s gatherings. He thought that she was the reincarnation of a blond spacewoman that he had known (in the biblical sense) in a previous life on Venus. He soon left his first wife an family to begin a new life of lectures and touring on the Contactee circuit. Many investigators visited the Menger home and interviewed witnesses whose stories varied with the telling or did not match each other.
From Outer Space To You, Menger’s 1959 entry into the contactee fray, made him a regular at Van Tassel’s annual Spacecraft Conventions in Southern California. Connie wrote a book entitled My Saturnian Lover about her previous interplanetary relationship with Menger.
In 1960, Menger appeared on a TV show with Nebel and basically recanted his entire story. He later said that he was involved in some sort of Army test of public reaction to possible alien contact. Fortean writer Ivan Sanderson arrived at the Menger residence in the late 1950s and claimed that Menger got very angry with him when Sanderson discovered some equipment and crates in a storage area with “U. S. Army” stenciled on them. (My source for this obscure story was the late Dr. Mario Pazzaglini.)
After this, Menger retired from the public eye and worked on electronic devices he said were designed to harness free energy and allow mankind to build their own flying saucers. He received no widespread publicity for these inventions. Jim Moseley recalled that Menger attended a UFO convention in the 1970s and “blew out all the fuses in the hotel” with one of his contraptions.
Despite the claims and controversy, Howard and Connie Menger seemed to be genuinely in love with each other and apparently raised a reasonably happy family. If nothing else, Menger will be remembered as a unique personality who tried to leave a positive message as his legacy.
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