PREFACE: Over the last 65 years, those individuals who investigate the UFO phenomenon have recognized that sighting reports can be readily categorized as to type of event. Probably the most frequent type of report is that of distant lights in the sky, which usually can be ascribed to celestial bodies, or to objects of terrestrial origin. More dramatic reports range all the way to sightings of strange looking objects at very close range. Multiple examples of all of the various categories of sightings could be cited here.
One category of sighting, which seems not to have received the recognition I feel it deserves, and which I find nevertheless to be among the most interesting, is that type in which an event is seen over a large geographical expanse, or which seems to have occurred over a distance of hundreds or thousands of miles. This type of sighting, I believe, has gone unheralded in ufology, and it is the type of event that underscores the value of organizations like MUFON and NUFORC, which collect, analyze, and report sightings, irrespective of their location of occurrence. Many other UFO organizations, for example, focus on sightings in just one state, or just one area of the country, which serves to limit the scope of the cases such organizations collect and report.
Sightings that are reported over a large geographical expanse, in my opinion, provide ufologists with credible evidence as to the very real nature of the UFO phenomenon, since they involves a large number of reports from seemingly independent sources.
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NEW ENGLAND “RENDEZVOUS” CASE, FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 1995, 22:20 HRS. (EASTERN)—At approximately 7:30 p.m. (Pacific) on Friday, November 17, 1995, NUFORC’s UFO Hotline began to ring off the hook, initially with calls from the southern coast of Maine. The callers described a dramatic event, in which a very brightly lighted object, generally green and yellow in color, allegedly had been seen to streak to the southwest, apparently following, and high above, the Maine coastline. One caller in the city of York, Maine, stated that the object had moved from the northeast sky to the southwest horizon, and directly above his location, in under five seconds, or less, he estimated, and that it had left a green streak across the night sky, which was still visible, he claimed, when he called the UFO Hotline. Many other calls were received in rapid sequence from Kennebunk, Kennebunkport, Portland, and from several other towns in the inland part of the state.
Within minutes of the first calls, other reports were received from other parts of New England, and from surrounding states, to include New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, and New Jersey. One early call was from an FAA Air Traffic Control supervisor at an FAA Air Route Traffic Control Center (“ARTCC”) office in Nashua, New Hampshire. Underscoring my initial, and growing, interest in the event, the supervisor reported that a very dramatic aerial event had been reported via radio to the ARTCC by an estimated three dozen aircraft in the vicinity of both Boston and New York. The crews of commercial aircraft had reported, just minutes before, that an object, generally green and yellow in color, and extremely bright, had been witnessed in the northern sky, and thought by the crews to be streaking to the southwest. A portion of the transcribed text of two dramatic radioed reports from two commercial aircraft, call signs “Lufthansa 405” and “Speedbird 226,” appears below:
SPEEDBIRD 226: Yeah, Speed Bird 226 confirms that. We saw the same thing. It certainly looked like an aircraft initially, but it may not have been one.
LUFTHANSA 405: ((We can’t tell then??)) It was looking very strange, with a long, uh, light, in the tail.
SPEEDBIRD 226: Yeah, a big bright white light on the front, and a greenish tail coming out the back.
LUFTHANSA 405: Can you confirm this? Lufthansa 405/Heavy.
FAA: OK, Lufthansa 405, Speed Bird 226. Thanks, we’ll look into it.
((EXTRANEOUS GROUND COMMUNICATIONS DELETED HERE.))
FAA: Speed Bird 226, did it go over...did it go overhead. The traffic go overhead you, or was it below you?
SPEEDBIRD 226: It was overhead and off to the left, much the same as ((garbled)). It actually looked about...opposite traffic, 2000 feet above. That’s what it initially looked like. But then it did have a very strong trail to it...a vapor trail, which looked more like smoke. And the light on the front was very, very bright, and as it went past us, it seemed to ((just?)) disappear and ((went)) 5 miles behind us.
FAA: Speed Bird, 226, roger. Were you level at 29 at that time?
SPEEDBIRD 226: Yeah, affirmative.
FAA: Roger. Lufthansa 405, how far off to your side did that pass, the traffic pass?
LUFTHANSA 405: It was pretty close, and like Speed Bird said, it looked like ((four??)) or three thousand feet above on the left wing, just one mile and, uh, on opposite track... It doesn’t have, ...it didn’t have any uh, lights...((normal)) lights, beacon lights, or red or green lights. Only a white light in the front, and with a long green light. It looked like a U-F-O.
FAA: Lufthansa 405, roger that. Like I said, we had nothing flying in the area. You are just north of a military operating area, but the traffic shouldn’t have varied (?) out that far out,...out of the area.
LUFTHANSA 405: Must have been a military. Lufthansa 405/Heavy.
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LOCATION: EAST ORANGE, VERMONT, 22:20 HRS. (EST)--Within minutes of these first telephoned reports from Maine, NUFORC received a call from a young woman, who lived at a rural setting with her husband and children just east of East Orange, Vermont. She called to report a very dramatic event that she and a neighbor had just witnessed. The woman described how, as she was driving home with a load of groceries, she had witnessed a cluster of six or seven red lights, which appeared to her to be maneuvering in the eastern sky, and which appeared to be above the mountain where her home was located. She was somewhat alarmed by the display, but continued driving toward her destination, nevertheless, looking forward to getting home.
Shortly after turning off the highway, and onto her driveway, which worked its way up the side of the mountain to her home, the woman was shocked to witness an immensely bright flash of red light, which was accompanied by a red “orb” streaking into the sky from the vicinity of her home, and which was seen to join the other red objects seen circling the mountain top!
The woman was so frightened by the event, she turned her car around on her driveway, drove back down the mountain to the highway, and pulled into her nearest neighbor’s driveway. She exited her vehicle, and she and the neighbor stood, watching the multiple red lights, which suddenly, as if on the same command, accelerated and streaked to the south, where they almost instantly disappeared over the southern horizon.
LOCATION: BASKING RIDGE, NEW JERSEY, HIGHWAY 267, 22:20 HRS. (EASTERN)—A young man was driving northbound on Hwy. 267, when his attention was suddenly drawn to a very fast-moving object off to his right side. He quickly glanced at it, as it streaked to the south at a very high rate of speed. When he looked back at the roadway, his attention was again captured by a cluster of distinctly red lights, which appeared to him to be streaking to the southwest in front of his car.
He reported that he was flabbergasted by the speed of the two sets of objects he had just witnessed in first the eastern sky, and then in the west. They were moving at a velocity that led him to the conclusion that they could not have been conventional aircraft.
LOCATION: LOWER NAZARETH, PENNSYLVANIA @ 22:25 HRS. (EASTERN)—A young woman was driving home with a load of groceries, when she suddenly became aware of a “huge,” bizarrely lighted object off to her right side. It had multiple lights, possibly “windows,” on the side that faced her location, and it was hovering motionless over a large field. The object was larger than the field, she reported!
She was so upset by the sighting that she just kept driving, leaving the object to its own devices, and she continued on to her home. When she arrived home safely, she called the UFO Hotline and reported her sighting. It was evident when she called that she was emotionally upset by the event.
LOCATION: NORTH OF YORK, MAINE, 22:40 HRS. (EASTERN)—A nurse, who had been at work at a local hospital until 22:30 hrs. (Eastern), left his place of work, and proceeded to drive toward his home in his BMW automobile. To his great amazement, he suddenly became aware of a very bright light, both green and yellow in color, grow in the eastern night sky. He looked to his right toward the light, as he drove to the north, and was flabbergasted to witness a distinctly yellow object, with a green center, slowly appear above a row of trees to his right. He reported that it looked somewhat like a “mushroom cap.”
As it approached his location from the east, it passed above the trees, the tops of which began to whip violently in a circular fashion. The mysterious object continued moving slowly to the west, and disappeared in the western sky, leaving the young man stopped on the roadway, and completely mystified, and frightened, by what he had just witnessed!
LOCATION: SEYMOUR-JOHNSON AIR FORCE BASE, NC, 23:30 HRS. (EASTERN)—A USAF sergeant, who was on duty at the base switchboard, called to report that the switchboard had received dozens of telephone calls from local citizens, who claimed to be witnessing strange looking objects seen maneuvering above the base. The sergeant reported that a “radar facility” had been contacted, and no contacts were evident on radar.
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This New England “Rendezvous” case is a classic example of the many reports NUFORC has received over the last 18 years, which address a “medley” of individual sighting events, which appear to be related to a common “global” event.
The original reports for each of the sighting events described above can be accessed from the NUFORC database of sighting reports at our website, UFOCenter.com. Of particular note in this case, is that the events reported appear to address at least two or three separate objects, or groups of objects, that were different in appearance, but which appeared to be aware of each other’s presence and location. It is interesting to consider whether they might have been maneuvering so as to maintain some semblance of a formation, or whether their intention might have been to avoid one another!
This was a very dramatic and complex case, which went apparently totally unnoticed by the press!! There have been many more like it, over recent decades, and I may address others in future articles for the MUFON UFO Journal!!