By ELIZABETH SHEPHERD
Vashon-Maury Island Beachcomber Arts Editor
One of the weirdest chapters in island history will soon light up the big screen.
On June 29, a film crew and ensemble of actors sailed the waters just off Maury and then came ashore on the beach — all part of a long day’s shoot for “The Maury Island Incident,” a short film about a UFO sighting that took place there in 1947.
The film’s director, Burien resident Scott Schaefer, said he has high hopes for the film — a $50,000 effort that will feature digitalized UFOs, period settings and costumes, a cast of 12 actors and a crew of almost 40 film professionals.
“We have a lot of ambition,” said Schaefer, adding that he and his team hope to take the finished 20- to 40-minute film on the festival circuit, and also use it to pitch the idea of a feature film or television series based on the spooky event.
The Maury Island Incident — so dubbed in books and newspaper coverage about the event — began on the afternoon of June 21, 1947, when a Tacoma seaman named Harold Dahl was trolling the waters of Puget Sound, looking for loose logs to collect and sell.
Then something strange happened, just off the east coast of Maury Island.
“As I looked up from the wheel of my boat I noticed six very large donut-shaped aircraft,” Dahl later told an investigator. “I would judge they were about 2,000 feet above the water and almost directly overhead.”
Dahl said the UFOs were silent and had “no visible means of propulsion.” He also claimed that one of them wobbled, dipped and began to rain lava-like slag down on the beach and his boat, damaging it and burning his young son on his arm. His family dog, he reported, was killed by the cascading space rocks. The terror finally ended, he said, when the five other aircraft came to the distressed ship’s rescue and they all whizzed away, out of sight. . . .
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