Location. La Rochelle near Mutare, Zimbabwe
Date: August 12 1981
Twenty laborers returning from work in the fields at six o’clock, saw a fireball rolling across the grounds of La Rochelle, a Forestry Commission station some nine kilometers from Mutare in eastern Zimbabwe. In charge of the group was Clifford Muchena and he was as stunned as the others; they watched the one and a half meter diameter fireball move from one side of the lawns to the other and then roll up the sloping lawn to an observation tower attached to the main house. “It walked up the wall of the tower” said Clifford “and entered the top window---then it burst into flame.”
Clifford rushed to ring the warning bell at the side of the house, to call one of the Game Wardens to come quickly. As he was ringing the bell, the fire "gathered into a ball again, came down the tower wall" past Clifford and then burst into flames again when it reached the Fantasy, an outbuilding which used to house the ex-owner’s orchids. Clifford ran to try and douse the flames, when he saw three men standing there with their backs to him. He was sure one of them was Andrew Connolley, a Game Warden and his Supervisor. He called out "Mr. Connolley, Mr. Connolley" and slowly the men turned around, whereupon Clifford fell to the ground.
“I couldn’t see their faces because there was so much light shining from them that I had to put my hands up to protect my eyes. They were wearing shiny overalls…”
The power from the light forced Clifford to his knees and he remained there until the light went out. When he looked again, both the fireball and the men were gone.
“All the time I was very frightened” he said. Indeed the women in the compound, witnesses to the sighting, had run off into the bush with their children and were not easily persuaded to return. All the witnesses, including Naison Sampindi, Clifford Muchena and Eunice Kachiti, were convinced that what they had seen were ghosts; the spirits of their ancestors. Probably a "shavi", a lost spirit who has not found his way home because his descendants have not done their duty by him.
HC addition # 372
Source: Cynthia Hind, UFO Afrinews # 2