ALL THE BAD STUFF COMES IN THREES
ZETI CHILD, LOST UPON A ONE STAR
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from the January 2007 Star Beacon
edited by Ann Ulrich Miller
THE BATTLE FOR
In an article from the
Rocky Mountain News dated Dec. 9, 2006, Deborah Frazier wrote that the battle
for Snippy the horse’s remains is in full swing.
Snippy was a mare that died in a field near Alamosa, Colo., in 1967, which
drew international attention because it was the first reported mutilation case
publicized, suggesting that UFOs were to blame.
Snippy’s bones have had a series of owners. They were wired together and
mounted on a wheeled platform, and appeared briefly on eBay the first week in
December, for a minimum bid of $50,000.
Attorneys for the heirs of Snippy’s last owner, Carl Helfin, lawyers for the
descendants of Snippy’s original owner, Nellie Lewis, and legal counsel for
the Alamosa Chamber of Commerce where Snippy resided, all claim the mare’s
It has been said that Lady, the horse’s real name, picked up the nickname
“Snippy” at the time of her death from reporters because of the way she was
found all cut up.
When Snippy was found dead, all flesh between her nose and withers was
removed, along with her brain. Nellie Lewis said that at the time, the boots
she walked in to where Snippy was found were radioactive. She also said her
hands burned when she picked up Snippy’s mane and a gizzard-like growth
appeared on her hand afterward.
Snippy launched the San Luis Valley’s reputation for spaceships and ET
encounters. And now her bones are a hot commodity. According to Cassandra
Martinez, the personal representative for Helfin’s estate (Helfin died in
2003), “We’re temporarily stalled on eBay now... the heirs think Snippy is
more valuable than $50,000 and they hope they can realize more than that.”
No paperwork trail followed Snippy’s postmortem from a veterinarian’s home to
the Alamosa Chamber of Commerce to Adams State College and then private
owners. “Snippy can’t leave this valley,” said Debra Goodman, director of the
chamber of commerce. “She’s historic. There’s a public outrage that she might
UFO author/investigator Chris O’Brien said he saw Snippy’s picture on a
supermarket tabloid in 1967, when he was 10. “The headline was ‘Flying Saucers
Killed My horse.’ ” He said he devoured the article. O’Brien resided in the
San Luis Valley for 13 years, researching incidents.
“There’s no other place with as many sightings. Snippy was the grand lady of
the mutilations,” O’Brien said. “I would hate to see someone from Japan come
up with the $50,000 to take Snippy away.”
Frank Duran, hired by Helfin’s estate to market Snippy, said Lewis’
descendants are upset about the sale and visited his office to have a family
picture taken with Snippy. “I’d like to see Snippy stay here, too,” Duran
Goodman said Helfin donated the railroad depot he owners to the town that
could house a museum that included Snippy and other historical items. “She’s
our icon,” Goodman said. “The valley is not what you call normal. We have a
prominent UFO history. Snippy represents that history better than anything.”
Martinez said Helfin’s heirs are sympathetic. “They want the most value for
Snippy that they can get, but the fact that the valley has such an interest in
Snippy will come into play,” she said.
Donations for the express purpose of purchasing Snippy are being solicited so
that she will have a permanent home in Alamosa. Any donation, regardless of
size, will be greatly appreciated and can be sent to Save Snippy, 300 Chamber
Drive, Alamosa, CO 81101. For more information on Snippy, go to www.snippy.com
or Christopher O’Brien’s Web site, http://tmv.us.
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