; Phantoms and Monsters: Pulse of the Paranormal

Tuesday, March 02, 2021

The Riley Crabb Revelations - Part I

The Riley Crabb Revelations - Part I

By Raymond A. Keller, PhD, a.k.a. “Cosmic Ray,” the author of the international awards-winning Venus Rising Series, published by Headline Books and available on Amazon.com, while supplies last.

Venus Rising: A Concise History of the Second Planet

Final Countdown: Rockets to Venus

Cosmic Ray's Excellent Venus Adventure

The Vast Venus Conspiracy

Lady Columba Venus Revelations

Riley Hansard Crabb was born on 2 April 1912 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In early December 1934, during a Christmas shopping trip to downtown Minneapolis, Riley discovered the library of the Theosophical Society.  Perusing the vast selection of esoteric books, Riley was fascinated by the treasure trove of knowledge dealing with the mystic arts and how one can develop the latent extrasensory powers pertaining to each individual.  Riley brought some literature and a membership application from the Theosophical Society home with him; and upon his next visit to that library one week later, he had joined the organization.  

As it turned out, Riley discovered that his mother, Eunice Crabb, was also a student of metaphysics and philosophy.  She was an avid follower of the then prominent researcher and writer of esoterica, Manly Palmer Hall, the founder of the Philosophical Research Society.   As the country was in the throes of the Great Depression, Riley would take advantage of the nearness of the Theosophical Society library and enjoy many visits there. While the Theosophical Society charged yearly dues, there was no charge for anyone to just come and read the books on the premises; and members could exercise the privilege of checking them out and taking them home.  

Riley with his mother, Eunice Crabb, an early student of esoteric philosophy.  Photo:  Håkan Blomqvist’s Blog, https://ufoarchives.blogspot.com/2018/05/the-riley-crabb-correspondence.html (8 May 2018).  

After the Japanese surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, Riley enlisted in the Navy, which took him to the Hawaiian Islands, where he served as a reporter for the mid-Pacific edition of Stars and Stripes, published in Honolulu, on the island of Oahu.  Following the war, Riley returned to Hawaii where he continued his media career as an announcer for KGU radio in Honolulu and later as publications editor and information specialist at the Naval Supply Center, Pearl Harbor.  Riley did such an outstanding job in handling all of his assignments with great skill that he received a $200 cash reward from Rear Admiral J. L. Herlihy.  Riley married his high school sweetheart Marion before the war broke out; but following his prolonged military duties overseas, the couple grew apart and the marriage did not endure.  It was in Hawaii that Riley Crabb met his second wife Judy; and they settled in Honolulu.

Riley’s interest in flying saucers began in 1950 when he came across an article on these mysterious objects in an edition of True magazine that he purchased at a Honolulu newsstand.  From then on, he started to read everything he could get his hands on dealing with the flying saucer phenomenon.  In the following year, he joined the Borderland Sciences Research Foundation and three years after that, he started lecturing on UFOs throughout the Hawaiian Islands. 

1955 and 1956 were crucial years for Riley in the ideation of his theories on the origin of the flying saucers and the approach he would take to the phenomenon.  It was during this time that Riley began a correspondence with the prominent astronomer and ufologist Morris K. Jessup, whose book, Case for the UFO (New York, New York:  Citadel Press, 1955), speculated that UFOs were “exploratory craft of ‘solid’ and ‘nebulous’ character.” In other words, the UFOs were composed of a real substance, just of a finer composition, and probably hailing from another plane of existence outside our own perception of time and space.  Jessup also connected ancient monuments with some kind of prehistoric super science brought to Earth by advanced beings from other worlds during the times of Atlantis and Lemuria.  Naturally, this appealed to Riley’s Theosophical leanings, at least insofar as this was the kind of material embodied in the writings of Helena P. Blavatsky, the co-founder of the Theosophical Society in the late 19th century.  

In one of his letters to Riley, dated 8 August 1955, Jessup informed him that he planned to write about the more esoteric “Elder Brother theme,” focusing on the message delivered by the flying saucer occupants to the contactees that they have been sending teachers among us for thousands of years, guiding the development of all aspects of our society from behind the scenes.  Wrote Jessup, “I am much interested in developing the ELDER BROTHER theme, perhaps in my second book….  Would be glad to have this and perhaps something regarding your society’s insight into the solar system.” In this context, the visitors to our world were particularly concerned about our development of atomic power, insofar as the destruction and disequilibrium resulting from any atomic war would not be limited to the Earth, even extending to other planets and dimensional tiers throughout the solar system.  An atomic war could literally rip huge tears in the fabric of the space-time continuum.  

Fellow esotericist and long-time friend of the late Riley Crabb, Håkan Blomqvist of Norrköping, Sweden, declared in his 8 May 2018 blogsite that, “Crabb realized, in the 1950s, that his special project or mission was to study the UFO enigma in relation to the Esoteric Tradition: ‘With my years of study and membership in two Mystery Schools, the Rosicrucians and Theosophy, my particular field seems to be to relate the teachings of the Schools to the coming of the Saucers.’ (Riley H. Crabb in letter to Elvira Cleary, 24 May 1958). This was to be the unique approach during all his years of research and writing, thereby following in the footsteps and tradition of prominent esotericists such as Meade Layne and Desmond Leslie.”

Others sharing his enthusiasm on the subject were quick to sign up with an organization he founded in 1956, the Akualele Research Group.  “Akualele” is a native Hawaiian word that roughly translates to “godly fireballs” or “fire spirits.”  Even while being so steeped in UFO research activities, Riley H. Crabb also served as president of the Honolulu Lodge of the Theosophical Society.   In the lodge, Crabb led the membership in an intensive study of the native kahuna religion and magic of Hawaii.  Riley was a disciple of Charles Kenn, David “Daddy” Bray, Kino Lau and others, all local experts on these esoteric matters. 

In August 1957, however, Riley and Judy left Hawaii for Barstow, California, where the Navy veteran found work as Assistant Employee Relations Officer at the Marine Corps Supply Center there in that desert community.   The Wednesday, 14 August 1957 issue of the Honolulu, Hawaii, Star-Bulletin ran a short story on the next-day departure of Mr. and Mrs. Crabb from the islands.  Titled “Crabb Is Off to Saucer Land,” the article noted that, “Riley Crabb, Hawaii’s flying saucer man, leaves for the Mainland Thursday in pursuit of flying saucers.  He will travel by airplane.  

“Accompanied by Mrs. Crabb, he will go to Southern California.”

The news item includes an interesting quote from Riley, speaking of his motivations for the move: “That’s flying saucer country.  Maybe we’ll see one there.”

Once settled in California, Riley tried to transfer to a Civil Service job in San Diego, where he could be closer to the headquarters of the Borderland Sciences Research Foundation.  Immediately after arriving in California, Riley wasted no time and began lecturing to various UFO and paranormal research societies, starting with the local chapters of contactee Daniel Fry’s Understanding group scattered throughout the state. 

Within the Department of Defense, there were no openings at that time in the San Diego area, but almost one year later, in June 1958, the couple was able to leave Barstow for Camarillo, California, where they moved into a new home at 41 Ramere St. in that beautiful Ventura County coastal city.  Riley had applied for work as the Visual Information Specialist at the U.S. Navy’s Pacific Missile Range at Point Mugu; and based upon his outstanding performance of duties in previous assignments, was quickly hired.  The esotericist always tried to keep a balance between his UFO investigations and writing and his career path within the corridors of the United States defense establishment.  He maintained a voluminous correspondence with friends and fellow researchers throughout the world, and this must have surely attracted the attention of his superiors in the work place.  Nevertheless, both Riley and Judy soon found themselves in demand as teachers and counsellors in the rather wild occult underground world of southern California. It was certainly becoming much more difficult for Riley to keep a low profile under these circumstances.

From my Venus files, I came across an interesting letter from Riley H. Crabb to Gray Barker of the Saucerian Press in Clarksburg, West Virginia.  Dated 21 October 1958, the letter is quite illustrative of Riley’s ramped up activities in the California UFO scene of the late 1950s as well as his lack of discretion when discussing then confidential developments in the Department of Defense and other branches of the United States government, beginning with the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).  Wrote Crabb, “Interesting that information should begin to break now about the CIA being the focus of control for the Silence Group.  If we all keep digging long enough, and continue to exchange information, we should get most of the facts eventually.”


Riley H. Crabb speculated on CIA connections with the so-called “Silence Group.”  Photo source:  Newshub, https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/world/2021/01/millions-of-cia-documents-on-ufos-and-paranormal-activity-released-online.html (30 January 2021).

Of his activities on the UFO speakers’ circuit, Riley continues, “Invitations to lecture continue to dribble in and I go out when the spirit moves me, which isn’t oftener than every six weeks or so.  I’ve finally procured a mimeograph machine and am trying to get some of the talks down into print….”  Fortunately, I have been able to secure some old and faded copies of these talks, which I will share with you, dear readers, in future installments of this series, especially as they pertain to the mysteries of our sister planet Venus.

And as to his participation at the annual festivities of the flying saucer conventions held annually out at the Giant Rock airport in Landers, California, about 17 miles northeast of Yucca Valley, California, Riley shares that, “Mrs. Crabb and I enjoyed a one-afternoon visit to Giant Rock last spring and I got good color slides, 35mm, of the thing….  (George) Van Tassel did invite me to be on the speaker’s platform and available, but I left the field to the ‘personal experience’ boys (the contactees) and made like a wide-eyed native of Hawaii.”

And then I found his concluding paragraph the most puzzling, especially since he came forth with these startling revelations in the midst of the United States attempting to become a space-faring power in competition with the Soviet Union, as well as to close the missile gap to which the Soviets then enjoyed a big edge over us:

“It certainly is fun working here in the Headquarters for the Pacific Missile range.  You should see the charts and other visual aids our Presentations Section is preparing for the Admiral.  Looks like the Navy is preparing to manage the Pacific Missile Range as the Air Force does the Atlantic Range, which is already becoming too small.  We’re mapping a missile range which extends from here all the way across the Pacific to Australia and beyond into the Indian Ocean, and plotting world-wide tracking stations for Polar orbits, Equatorial orbits, 30˚ orbits, etc., for satellites of every description.  I scarcely hoped to get this close to the race for outer space when I left Hawaii.  I tried to wrangle an Air Force invitation to the unveiling of the X-15 (rocket plane) at North American (Aerospace) the other day, but I’m not high enough on the totem pole, yet.  I could have even put up with the speech by Vice President Nixon for a firsthand look at the gorgeous space wagon.  If it proves out in experimental flights around here, don’t be surprised if the X-15 is hoisted up into orbit, piggyback on a beefed-up Thor or Atlas (missile), for a half-hour trip around the world from Canaveral to Edwards Air Force Base.  Wanna volunteer for a ride?”

Wow! Can you imagine how the Soviets could have utilized some of that detailed information against the United States in the space race and attempts to achieve missile superiority back in the late 1950s?  It was fortunate for Riley H. Crabb that the United States government did not catch on to what a security breach he turned out to be before he finally moved to New Zealand in December 1985, where he died nine years later.  Other veterans and former government employees, like retired Marine Corps aviator Major Donald E. Keyhoe, Director of the National Investigations Committee on Aerial Phenomena (NICAP) that was headquartered in Washington, D.C., stated that they have no qualms about disclosing information to the public at large about UFOs, insofar as knowledge of the existence of these objects as interplanetary reconnaissance craft would impact all nations of the Earth equally.  But when it comes to actual defense preparations and programs that protect our country against possible threats from foreign military powers, they would remain silent. 


(Editor’s Note: For Part II of the “Riley Crabb Revelations,” be sure and stay tuned to this blog where the “Cosmic Ray”/Dr. Keller, will take you beyond the veil of space and time on a visit to Venus Etheria.  To contact Dr. Raymond A. Keller with any of your comments or questions about life on Venus or any other aspects of the UFO phenomenon, do not hesitate to write him via e-mail at rkeller1@mix.wvu.edu.  Until next time, keep watching the skies!)