Books by Author: Fiction
EMP – Book 1 – Nuclear Winter
EMP – Book 2 – Nuclear Spring
EMP – Book 3 – Nuclear Summer
The White Hats Non-fiction
Soaring with the Eagles
The Secret Genesis of Area 51
THE AREA 51 CHRONICLES the CIA AT AREA 51 1955–1979
Book 1 – The Angels
Book 2 – The Archangels
Book 3 – The Company Business
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16 May 2017
TD Barnes, founder and the first executive director of the Nevada Aerospace Hall of Fame resumes that role from Director Dr. Dan Bubb. It is anticipated that many of the original staff of officers will return following their dismissal by former Director Robert Friedrichs who replaced Barnes when he stepped down in 2013. Barnes intends to resume the aggressive recognition of the contributions and achievements that made Nevada a giant in US Aerospace and Aviation .
Barnes, an Army, NASA, and Area 51 veteran is also the president of Roadrunners Internationale, an association of the participants in the CIA’s U-2, A-12, and the CIA/USAF YF-12. Barnes is the CEO of Startel, Inc. a Nevada business and is the author of numerous books, both fiction and nonfiction.
4-14-2010 - 1955 AEC atomic test mannequins located and presented to the Atomic Testing Museum in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Former Area-51 employees T.D. Barnes and Clyde Fancher locate two AEC mannequins that survived an atmospheric atomic test in Yucca Flats of the Atomic Proving Grounds, known today as the DOE Atomic Test Site.
T.D. Barnes and Clyde Fancher enjoying an EAA breakfast at the North Las Vegas Airport
Did someone suggest say aliens from Area 51?
Clyde Fancher's plane that he purchased from the AEC. The plane was abandoned at Camp Desert Rock near Mercury, Nevada, the entrance to the Atomic Proving Grounds. Note the U.S. Air Force markings still on the plane.
First Person: T.D. Barnes
As told to Angus Batey
Published: October 17 2009 00:42 | Last updated: October 17 2009 00:42
Area 51 is a military base in Nevada where the Air Force, the CIA and aerospace manufacturers test the machines they don’t want anyone to know about. By the time I started working there, I was already used to keeping secrets, even from those closest to me. I think that’s typical of military families: they’re not in the habit of quizzing each other about day-to-day details.
I’d had 10 years in the army, and was highly trained in radar operation. After my discharge in 1964, I was hired at the Nasa High Range at Beatty, Nevada, as a hypersonic flight support specialist. On days when nothing much was happening, I’d fire up the radar and see if I could find anything. One day I picked up something travelling at over 2,000mph near a local dry lake. It wasn’t one of ours and we were told to forget we’d seen anything, but shortly afterwards the Beatty station was asked to provide radar support for these flights. I was the only person allowed in the radar room during these missions.
I was approached about a secret, unspecified job shortly afterwards. I’d worked for the CIA when I was in the army, so I knew the recruitment drill. I arrived at Area 51 in 1968, just as the CIA was winding down a programme codenamed Oxcart. This was the A-12, a surveillance aircraft that flew at three times the speed of sound, right on the edge of space. It was the aircraft I’d tracked at Beatty.
Even though most of my career had been in classified projects, the big difference at Area 51 was the threat of Soviet spies. Their satellites sometimes kept us pinned down and unable to fly missions for months at a time. So in some ways it was the most boring job I ever had.
They started declassifying our work in about 1990, but we still wouldn’t talk about it. Our veterans’ association, the Roadrunners, held reunions every two years, but even that was pretty clandestine. Gradually, though, more information was declassified, and a few years ago I set up RoadrunnersInternationale.com, so we could start telling people about what we’d done. Our work was very important, and if we don’t talk about it, no one will ever know.
I think the key thing in getting our members to open up was when David Robarge, the CIA’s own historian, called because he needed information from us he couldn’t get from anyone else. So now our members have realised that it’s OK to tell their stories – in fact, that it’s desired for the sake of history.
For a lot of us, what you did during the cold war at Area 51 is stuff that’s been bottled up, without even being able to tell your family – so finally talking about it can be a very emotional thing. The US air force had a plane, the SR-71, which was a two-seat version of the A-12, and throughout its life, there were no losses of aircraft or pilots and that was because we’d taken the risk out of it for them. During the A-12 programme, we lost 30 per cent of our planes and 20 per cent of our pilots – all without anyone outside being allowed to know.
I get messages almost daily now. Usually it’s a granddaughter who’s run across something on the website, and they’re so tickled because they know that their grandpa did something very important that he wasn’t allowed to talk about. Often he’s deceased already and they’re only finding out the truth now.
It came full circle for me: my daughters followed in my footsteps and got jobs at the Area. To this day I don’t even think they’ve ever looked at the website – they have polygraph tests every six months out there and they’d be afraid they’d have a flare-up if they were asked whether they’d discussed Area 51 with anyone. Even though it’s innocent, it could cause a problem, so we just don’t talk about it.