Experienced health issues after his close encounter during the famous Rendlesham Forest incident.
Retired United States Air Force staff sergeant John Burroughs joined the U.S. Air Force when he was under 20 years old. In December 1980 he was involved in the Rendlesham Forest incident.
On December 26, 1980, Burroughs was on duty as a security officer at RAF Woodbridge when he and Penniston were dispatched to investigate strange lights in the nearby Rendlesham Forest. Burroughs claimed he witnessed the craft up close and experienced several physiological effects, including temporary blindness and a ringing in his ears. He was later diagnosed with a heart condition that he believed was linked to the incident.
After the incident, Burroughs continued to serve in the Air Force and was later deployed to various locations around the world, including the Gulf War. In 2013, he underwent heart surgery to correct the condition that he believed was caused by the Rendlesham Forest incident. Burroughs won a 30 year old fight with the U.S. government to receive full disability benefits by the US Department of Veterans Affairs, after the government initially denied him coverage and claimed he was not involved in the Rendlesham Forest incident or in the U.S. Air Force in 1980. Burroughs legal team had to uncover documents from the British Ministry of Defense in order to proof he was exposed to high levels of radiation during the Rendlesham Forest incident. As an Arizona state citizen, Burroughs received help from Senator John McCain's office, who corrected his medical records, yet never released his medical records.
Burroughs later become an advocate for the declassification of government files related to UFO sightings and has spoken publicly about his experiences. He also appeared in numerous interviews and documentaries, including the History Channel's "Unidentified: Inside America's UFO Investigation" and "The Phenomenon." In 2018, he co-authored a book with Nick Pope, a former UK government UFO investigator, titled "Encounter in Rendlesham Forest: The Inside Story of the World's Best-Documented UFO Incident."