Kōfu is the capital city of the Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan. The city is located between the city of Nagoya and Tokyo, and is known as a peaceful and attractive place to live. But it is known for something else, as well.
This beautiful city was the site of an encounter of the third kind, aliens. Two little boys witnessed two UFOs and a strange, terrifying alien they never forgot. What was the Kōfu Incident, and what did the boys see?
The Kōfu Incident
In February 1975, two 7-year-old boys, Masato Kawano, and Katsuhiro Yamahata, were roller skating near the Hinode Housing Estate in Kamimachi, Kōfu, when they saw something strange in the sky. The boys said they spotted two “glittering orange UFOs frolicking in the sky above” as they put it.
Like anyone who just saw not one but two unidentified flying objects, the boys stood transfixed, watching the glittering UFOs dance across the sky. One UFO took off and flew towards Mount Atago in the distance, and the other began to lower to the ground before finally landing amongst rows of grapes in the vineyard behind the estate.
One strange thing the boys said was that the UFOs made a strange crackling or ticking sound. Apparently it was just like the sound a Geiger counter makes when reading a radioactive environment.
As soon as the second UFO landed, the boys kicked off their skates and took off running to the back of the estate to get a closer look at the mysterious craft. The young boys said that when they got closer to the UFO, they realized it wasn’t orange like it appeared in the sky; instead, it was a domed silverish disc-shaped spacecraft.
The children claimed the craft was around seven feet (2 m) high and almost 15 feet (4.5 m) in diameter, with “strange characters” engraved onto the ship’s hull. While the boys were getting a closer look, they saw a hatch open up on the side of the UFO open and a ladder extended onto the ground.
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According to the boys, one humanoid creature descended the steps disembarking the craft. Then the shocked kids saw a smaller humanoid creature that looked like a little version of the first creature that remained in the craft, sitting in a control room for the ship.
The Kōfu Creatures
The youngsters said the first creature had unnaturally long arms and was around 4 feet (1.2 m) tall. The Kōfu Creature was wearing a reflective uniform that made it look as if it was glowing.
The creature’s skin was dark brown and covered in dense collections of wrinkles that obscured the eyes and nose of the creature. While most of the face was obscured with thick wrinkles, the boys did notice the creature had three teeth that they described as being “silvery metal fangs” that looked incredibly sharp.
Oddly enough, this creature didn’t seem to notice the two stunned children gawking at it, and the creature began to walk around and explore the vineyard’s terrain. Maybe the creature could feel the boy’s eyes burning into its back, but it froze, spun around, and “put one of its hands” on Katsuhiro Yamahata’s shoulder before patting it twice. Both boys said the creature was making sounds like “a tape recorder running backward,” and Yamahata fell to the ground, almost paralyzed.
Although the boys were only seven years old (and were in a state of shock, witnessing something not of this earth) when Yamahata dropped to the ground, his friend Masato Kawano had the presence of mind to act. He grabbed his friend off the ground, tossed him over his shoulder, and ran away.
When the boys made it home, they told their mothers what they saw, and seeing how distraught their sons were, the moms had their children take them to the site where they saw the ship. The mothers allegedly saw a strange orange pulsating light coming from within the vineyard. After watching the lights for a little bit, the UFO launched into the sky with a bright flash of light so strong the kids and their moms had to look away.
Only Kawano and Yamahata actually saw the craft, but one of their friends from school, Ichiro Minegishi (age 8), said that he saw a glistening object in the sky that flew towards the Hinode Housing Estate about half an hour before the other two boys had their encounter while he was in the car with his parents. As all kids do, Kawano and Yamahata went to school the next day and told all their classmates and teachers about what they saw the night before.
The boys drew pictures of the UFO and The Kōfu Creature that they saw, and the whole school was soon talking about the alien.
The school’s principal, Nobuyoshi Kaneko, and some school officials decided to inspect the vineyard themselves. In an attempt to investigate fully, the school staff grabbed any scientific equipment the school had with them as they went into the vineyard.
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The adults noticed that there were two “solid concrete posts that had been pushed over” at the landing site. The school staff investigated if the kids could have knocked the posts over and determined it was impossible.
According to the investigation by the teachers, there was something they called “landing traces” or soil marks and impressions where the UFO had supposedly landed. One teacher claimed there were traces of radioactivity in the landing range. How the teacher determined this is unknown; it was never mentioned if anyone brought a Geiger counter with them.
The boys were also questioned thoroughly by their teacher, principal, their moms, and even notable UFO investigator Masaru Mori came and questioned them as well. Regardless of who questioned the boys, their stories remained the same; they never differed in their accounts of what happened.
The Japanese Civil Aviation Bureau of Transportation Ministry responded to the rumors of aliens and made a public statement where they claimed that what the boys saw wasn’t a UFO. Instead, the Ministry said that the boys actually saw the lights of a YS-11 propeller plane.
They claimed that sometimes the aircraft would fly at altitudes as low as 3,000 feet (1,000 m) which would make the lights and the body visible to the naked eye. Nothing was said about the fanged humanoids, and no explanation was given as to what the creatures might have been.
The two boys returned to the landing site when they were 14 years old in 1982. In 2001 the boys participated in a show where they both were hypnotized and questioned about the Kōfu Incident. Even all those years later and under hypnosis, they repeated the same story they told when they were seven years old.
Children have detailed and rich imaginations and even imaginary friends they play with and speak to. The boys might have made up the Kōfu Incident; however, their story never shifted. They were very young when the Kōfu Incident occurred, and they would have had to rehearse their story repeatedly because they told the same story every time. The boys definitely saw something strange that afternoon; if it was fanged aliens that they saw, the world might never know.
Top Image: Nobody has been able to adequately explain what the boys saw in the Kofu UFO incident. Source: Dark Illusion / Adobe Stock.