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Richard Heene: Balloon Boy Hoax. “I’m really sorry I yelled at him,” Richard Heene said, “He scared the heck out of us.” The Colorado Army National Guard prepared to launch an OH-58 Kiowa helicopter to help in rescue, but the craft came down on its own. landed in a vacant field Thursday afternoon. Workers quickly tore it open, revealing there was no one inside. The empty craft suggested the child might have fallen from the runaway balloon as it sailed wildly for more than an hour — or that he never left the ground.

“Balloon Boy”

Only one family can claim “Balloon Boy” as their own.

That’s the moniker given to Falcon Heene in October 2009 when he was just 6 years old.

On October 15, 2009, 6-year-old Falcon Heene, aka the Balloon Boy, became the source of a wild goose chase that took Colorado authorities over both the land and air space of northern Colorado. After his parents, Richard and Mayumi, frantically alerted local police that their son was trapped in a balloon floating up to 7,000 feet above ground, the world watched in horror as the desperate search for the missing child dragged on for over four hours.

Even President Obama had got dumped from a live broadcast in New Orleans to track the supersized Jiffy Pop bag floating over Colorado.

The story immediately drew a swarm of media attention — after all, it isn’t every day that news crews cover a runaway UFO-like balloon potentially carrying a 6-year-old boy. But with the enormous influx of attention also came suspicions that the whole ordeal was nothing more than a hoax, one that Falcon’s parents hoped would simply garner them their 15 minutes of fame.

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