Patrick Shank

My Father Was an Area 51 Engineer

September 28, 2017

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S y n o p s i s / B i o

My name is Patrick Shank. My father, Ray Shank, was an electrical design engineer. He was in radio first (military and commercial), while he attended school for electrical design. After college, he was recruited to go to Libya. During his career he worked on a number of SAP (special access programs), SR-71, Nike Missiles, Titan 1, Titan 2 missiles, Mercury, Gemini and Apollo Missions, Tomahawk Cruise Missiles.

Partial llist of some contractors he worked for:

  • Hycon Page - 1950s

  • Bell Labs - 1950s

  • Lockheed - Late 1950s

  • NASA - 1960s and 1970s

  • Aramco - 1970s

  • NASA (second Time) - 1980s

  • Martin Marietta - 1980s

  • McDonnell Douglas - 1990s (Retired)

  • 1950s - He designed and built a radio listing station in Libya - for Hycon Page which later ended up being used to help the Israelis in two wars. Later he was told to leave by the Gaddafi regime. My father, wife and my sister had 24 hours to leave. But this put him in a good position with the Department of Defense, which offered him a world of possibilities.

  • After Libya he went to work at White Sands Missile range (Nike Missile). Shortly after, he was relocated to the Ranch also known as Area 51 (Lockheed) to work on electrical design for the SR-71 project.

  • 1960s, 1970s - Space Race, working on Titan landed him at NASA for Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo programs.

  • 1970s after Apollo, he went on a brief hiatus and then went to Saudi Arabia. In 1977 and 78 he helped Bin Laden Construction, (ARAMCO) build commutation systems and radar.

  • 1980s - Went back to NASA to work in the Space Shuttle program, but was laid off after budget cuts. He then went to Martin Marietta to work on missile design.

  • 1990s - He was hired by McDonnell Douglas to work on the Tacit Rainbow Project (Tomahawk Cruise Missile).

We also discussed:

  • Fathers Early Life - how it all got started

  • Our family

  • Me - growing up with all of this happening in front of me.

  • He also told me about:

  • Secret Space Program

  • UFOs over missile sites

  • UFOs during space race

  • Strange things on the moon

  • Neil Armstrong and what happed to him on the moon.

  • UFO crash in Florida swamp

  • DOD Security sweeps at our house

  • His regrets of the things he worked on.

Some photographs:

Right before he went to Libya

My father, his first wife and my sister Cheryl. Notice jacket and patch.


Saudi Arabia 1977.




































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