regarding reported UFO phenomenon over
Southern Ohio on March 26, 1997
During telephone discussion with reporter after 9:00 p.m. on March 27, WKRC Channel 12 News (Cincinnati) confirmed to T.A.S.K. researcher Kenny Young that the news department had received 'countless' reports of UFOs on Wednesday night. The news reporter stated that the bulk of sightings came in between 8 and 9:00 P.M. The heaviest concentration of reports were generated from the Clermont County communities of Loveland and Georgetown, Ohio. The news department contacted the Georgetown Ohio State Highway Patrol Post, where two officers also reportedly observed the UFOs. Strangely, WKRC Channel 12 news did not convey the news of this happening to the general public despite the massive amount of sightings, because, according to the reporter, "there was no explanation for the event."
After a press release announcement of this event was forwarded to various news agencies, a reporter at the Cincinnati Enquirer news offices telephoned to add that their newsroom had also received reports. They had even contacted Wright Patterson Air Force Base to address the influx of calls they were receiving. The reporters said that his editors wanted a more in-depth report on the recent activity, and that he is writing an article which will appear in the SUNDAY edition of Cincinnati Enquirer. Regrettably, however, the reporter said his editors were 'micro-managing' the situation, and their 'story' was never published.
8:00 p.m. A phone call from Jesse XXXX (825-XXXX) was received by this writer regarding a UFO sighting near Cheltenham Drive in Mount Healthy. Jesse said he witnessed a UFO with friend, Josh. Both were outdoors looking for Comet Hale-Bopp, when they reportedly observed a large white light 50 to 60 degrees above the horizon. The light was surrounded by smaller lights that were 'scattered about.' The surrounding lights flashed with a synchronized pattern. One small red light was occasionally noticed to the side of the main object, best described as a 'white light.' Jesse said he was 80 to 90% certain this was not an airplane. Dogs in the neighborhood were barking 'radically.' Jesse fetched his camera and took 1-photo of the object, but isn't sure how it will come out because of darkness. The object was visible for nearly 5 minutes before departure path to the north.
A telephone call was received by a gentleman we will list as Dave on Thursday, March 27. He sounded sober and coherent, and didn't want his name or place of employment listed. He acquired my phone number by looking up "UFO" on internet.
Dave works at a warehouse in Wilmington, which is located within visual range of the two runway strips of the Wilmington Airport. He was at work around 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 26, 1997. Workers began going outside and watching odd aerial lights which appeared over the east part of Wilmington. The lights seemed to be positioned over Hillsboro, which is in Highland County, and also over Cincinnati. The lights were not Airborne or Federal Express traffic, which they see constantly there, being located right off the runway.
There were lights in a triangular formation spotted by a second person and the security guard. The manager of the company also saw them, and he was in the air force and had "never seen anything like them before." The primary witness (Dave) thought it was a joke by 5-persons, and went outside to see a huge orange fireball, which disappeared and reappeared. It would simultaneously fade as the other would appear, almost in PERFECT conjunction with one another, assuming the shape of a boomerang. It could not have been an airplane, he said.
Dave had two questions:
1. Why over populated area?
2. Why over Airborne Express and Wilmington Airport?
At 7:35 p.m., Dave said that the crowd also observed FOUR fighter jets appearing from the northwest. The jets headed directly SOUTHEAST towards the lights, which had been under observation prior to the arrival of the jets. The lights were in progress at 7:30 and the jets flew overhead at 7:35 p.m. As the lights would "come on" the jets would fly into that general vicinity as if playing a game of 'cat and mouse.' The planes were in a semi-V formation, and flew so low you could see the missiles underneath. The light show appeared 8 times from 7:30 to 8:45 p.m. 11 witnesses. There was a 'main object' described as a single orange ball. The other objects, described as 'red balls' would light up and die in a straight line. Tracer lights could be seen from the jets in general vicinity. The planes circled in one huge circle. The two jets 'came back' at a higher altitude after engaging the lights. Sound from jets were heard 'plain as day.'
In the sky, the main object was said to be larger than a dime at arms length. The main object didn't move at all, and held stationary in one spot. The red balls appeared near the main object. All the balls were brighter and larger than the stars, and appeared randomly. When one would light up, the other would die, as if it was 'borrowing' from the previous light. Unlike the ignitiion and extinguishing characteristics of flares, stated the witness.
The red ball formation appeared in a boomerang and also a straight line pattern 5-times. There was no trail to the little balls. The balls would appear and go across, a couple of times went 'up' in the boomerang shape. They would arc, and the formation would be comprised of 5-lights, sometimes forming a pyramid or triangle shape.
Dave felt that the air traffic to Wilmington Airport may have been disrupted by this event, as no regular flights in or out of the airport were underway during the happening. Automobile traffic Southbound on State Route 73 was affected, however, as motorists were hitting their brake-lights, according to the caller.
Dave called the Sheriff's department around 8:15 p.m. A security guard informed his daughter, and she also called the police at 8:45 p.m. Both times, the dispatchers on duty said NO to having HEARD of any unusual reports. Another employee contacted OHIO STATE PATROL dispatch center in Wilmington.
Jake Ashcraft (583-XXXX) placed a phone call at 9:15 p.m. to advise of sighting unusual light phenomenon north of Loveland, Ohio, in Clermont County. The caller was with his girlfriend when they sighted several lights which held stationary and then accelerated at a rapid speed. There was a main object and also smaller objects in a triangular formation. He felt certain they were not flares, nor were they airplanes. He said there was no noise which could be heard. The caller stated that there was a pinkish-white 'vapor trail' which could be seen occasionally, and described the vapor trails as 'PIXELS on a computer screen which faded out.' The main object was 'absolutely huge,' and the witness said that many people 'had to have seen it.' He said the phenomenon was easily visible from a laundrymat in Loveland, near a McDonalds restaurant, and the twosome were looking to the north. The abnormality departed to the north.
T.A.S.K. Investigations Coordinator Ron Schaffner received a telephone call from a resident of Brown County, Ohio, who also observed the event from his locality, which is near the town of Aberdeen.
One witness who is an employee at the warehouse in Wilmington placed a telephone call to his mother, who lives near Rocky Fork Lake. His mother reportedly went outdoors and also observed the phenomenon from her vantage point.
All witnesses we spoke with expressed their confusion at why this event had not been addressed through the local news media, as they had listened closely for any explanatory reports (although a Columbus, Ohio television station did report on the event).
The following E-mail message was received at 1:00 a.m. on March 27, 1997. It was also forwarded to Ohio UFO researcher Michael Sebring, who conveyed the information by E-mail. The following message was returned to its originator with a reply asking for more details. The response was delivered, and this is a compilation of both preliminary message and response. The message is an excellent summary of the perceived event, forwarded by a concerned citizen, and we appreciate such quality submissions.
>> Anyone hear any reports of UFO sightings in the Dayton, OH area on Wednesday March 26, 1997? My fiance and I saw some pretty spectacularly weird stuff in the sky over Caesar's Creek State Park. There was nothing on the news about it despite the several people we saw pulled off highway 73 to look at it. I've been looking at the sky for a long time, but I've never seen anything even close to this.
>> About a mile from the turn-off to Caesar's creek beach we saw a big orange light in corner of the windshield. It was several times brighter and larger than any object in the sky. It divided into five pieces along a straight line and remained motionless. Some other people saw it and were pulling off the road. The light furthest to the left faded and disappeared. Three others did exactly the same thing until only the original light was left, then it suddenly winked out.
We then pulled into the beach's parking lot and I was hurrying to set up my camera. I had the camera (a 35mm SLR on a tripod) in place and was looking towards the area where we'd last seen it with binoculars, when it appeared across the lake and began dividing again.
Through the binoculars it just looked like a very bright oval orange light. I ran over to point the camera at it, but by the time I'd lined up the shot it had winked out again, this time only dividing twice. You really need video to shoot this kind of thing.
We stayed in the parking lot shooting the comet for about a half hour and saw no more of the object. It is suppossed to be clear again tonight. We will probably try to see if the object returns. I know it wasn't a plane or a meteor or any other naturally occuring object. We watched the 11:00pm news and the news this morning, but there was no mention of it on any of the Dayton stations. I would really like to know if anyone else was watching the sky, and what exactly they got to see.<<
A phone call to the Clinton County Sheriffs department revealed that numerous calls had been received from the general public in regards to the event. No reports had been filed, although a police detective on patrol near New Vienna, Ohio, also witnessed the happening, and attempted to pursue an 'object.' The sighting made by the Clinton County Sheriff official was confirmed by two separate dispatchers at the Clinton County Sheriff's Office.
A dispatcher on-duty at 7:15 p.m., March 27 stated that the department had been advised that the lights were explainable as 'helicopters.' When asked, the dispatcher couldn't advance a source for this explanation, but added that it was advanced to their satisfaction. T.A.S.K. suspects this faulty explanation was advanced simply because the dispatcher didn't want to handle a "UFO inquiry."
Thanks very much for the interesting reports. We have received several calls over the last 24 hours, which describe events in the Midwest. Brief synopses appear below:
1) A mother and daughter in Dubuque, IA, witnessed approximately 15 orange, distinctly round objects maneuvering in the sky. The objects split into two groups, and then streaked off in opposite directions. Time: About 1930-1945 hrs. (local), Wednesday, 26MR97.
2) A man in Huron, OH, was standing outside, looking at the comet. He witnessed two very bright, white, glowing objects come streaking toward his position "from Sandusky, Ohio." He reported that each object was approximately "3 times the size of a star," and they were maneuvering relative to one another in "wiggly flight." Suddenly, the two objects executed what appeared to be right-angle turn (viewed from the ground), and they streaked out of sight. Time: 2230 hrs. (local), Wednesday, 27MR97. Duration: 3 seconds.
3) A man in Wilmington, OH, witnessed two bright lights positioned beside one another in the night sky. One of the lights extinguished, then the second one disappeared, too, approximately 5 seconds later. Then, they suddenly reappeared, and extinguished again. To his amazement, there was a streak of light, wider than the diameter of a full moon, that flew over his head and disappeared over the horizon. The man stopped his car to have a better look at the lights. When he stepped out of his car to get a better look at the objects, he saw and heard a flight of what appeared to be military fighter aircraft flying at a very high speed in the direction of the objects last seen. Time: 1930 hrs. Wednesday, 26MR97.
Thanks for the information!! Cordially, Peter B. Davenport, Director
Telephone call from JAMIE XXXX (606) 564-XXXX Mason County, KY, placed 9:50 P.M. Sunday Night, March 30, 1997
Time of event: Wednesday March 26. No planes in the area. Clear sky. The sun had just set, it was still daylight outside. Time - 7:45 p.m.,
While watching TV, witness spots a BRIGHT FIERY LIGHT start dropping out of sky. This was observed from the interior of his house, seen looking out his sliding doors. As the object drops, the witness thinks it is an 'asteroid' or 'bomb.' The object has definite motion from a high to a low elevation. The witness was expecting the hillside to explode, and braced for some kind of impact. However, the object doesn't hit the ground, but it reportedly stopped right above the treetops, and at that moment the witness suddenly observes a second, identical object above the first, which was either 'left behind' by the first object, or else 'produced' the first object. The two objects were described as 3-dimensional spheres of light. An adjacent barn exists on nearby hill, and the two objects were said to be 4-times the size of the barn from his vantage point. Suddenly, 15 to 25 objects in perfectly straight line, extending into infinity appeared 'in complete unison.' The further away, the smaller the objects seemed, and the closer ones seemed larger. They looked like the sun, really bright and round. This was called THE STRING.
The string of lights stretched across the entirety of the sky, and witness states emotional effect regarding this observation, and claims: "Never seen anything like it before in all my life. Incredible." The witness believes it could have been seen from as far away as NEW YORK. Looking due north, 4,000 yards away from his house, the witness observed the stationary string of white lights stretch from horizon to horizon, but he felt the locality of the objects would have been situated on Kentucky side of the Ohio River. The oddest happening was when the initial light suddenly intensified in brightness, then the next one does likewise, and so on, down the chain as far as could be seen. From the bottom of the chain to the top, the lights intensified. After they would intensify in brightness, they would continue to shine at that level of luminousity. All lights in the endless chain were said to be perfectly motionless, as no movement could be noted. The witness began screaming for wife to come. Once he hollered, the string abruptly vanished, just like you would "turn a light off." They did not vanish 'one at a time,' but rather, all at one sudden moment, as the witness was directly asked emphatically about this particular detail.
The witness says he will be effected for the rest of his life by this singular happening, and will compare the light emanating from this as far more powerful than a nuclear explosion. There were no shadows cast from the lights, even though they were "bright like the sun."
"It looked like God himself was coming down out of heaven, walking on these steps of light, which stretched across the sky in a straight line from horizon to horizon, and like a 'tweak' was applied to each light that ran across the chain, which ran down it and made it more solid... and brighter. Then they all just turned off."
After a 10 or 15 second pause, a 600 foot. "spaceship" appeared, also witnessed by wife. The soundless 'spaceship' was 'noticed' as no approach path was noted. When asked why the term 'spaceship,' the witness commented: "I don't know what else to call it. It couldn't have been anything from this earth." He added that there was no substance to it. Without the lights on it, you wouldn't know it was there, even though it was still partially daylight. The lights on the spaceship were not the same as the one spotted when looking due north (the 'string'), as they were not as bright. The only things that gave it definition was a bank of 10 horizontal white lights and then a blue horizontal tint just above and below the bank of white lights, and on the left side and the right side was a little bit of reflection of the lights. The lights appeared all at once, and in the same height and direction in the sky as the STRING. The object just vanished, like someone turned of the lights. All of the lights went out at exactly the same time, not one by one, and when asked more specifically, the witness added that there was no indication of twinkling or burn-out, as visible with common flares. Sometimes the lights looked stationary, sometimes like they were revolving around it. At this point, the witness ran indoors to get his camera.
The 'spaceship' appeared twice, but the second time it was getting darker outside. As it appeared the second time, visible for a shorter duration, the witness did not have his camcorder prepared, and was loading the tape into it. Neighbors were said to have witnessed the spaceship as it appeared the second time. The distance between the observer and the 'spaceship' was estimated to be about 4,000 yards away, and its size was said to be as big as a barge. It was in clear view, with no obstructions blocking the angle of observation. The witness characterized as follows: "Horizontal bank of white lights, sometimes motionless, sometimes revolving around the spaceship. I'm sure it was nothing from this world, there's just no way. I was able to see this thing crystal clear, not anything far off or uncertain. Its elevation seemed to be 200 feet from the ground, around 100 feet from treetops. Again, I say it's hard to describe, but there was no solid structure or substance. Without lights turned on, you'd never know it was there."
Finally having his videocamera ready, the witness recorded 15 MINUTES of VIDEO, which did not capture the image of the spaceship or the string. The spaceship had vanished, after appearing twice. Now, all that remained was small white lights that moved randomly, and they appeared and then disappeared. They seemed to be far off in the distance, 10 to 20 miles away.
Around 2 of the 15 minutes of the video contain images of white lights that vanish and reappear. The individual lights, as visible, were present for 15 to 20 seconds at a time.
The neighbors had already been contacted, and the witness called another 'buddy' from MAYSVILLE, eight miles away. On May 17, 1996, this Maysville resident had witnessed unusual lights as well. He knows the night well because a family member was burned in a fire on that night. He thinks this person also observed STRING or the SPACESHIP, because he heard him set the phone down and run outside when he placed the call.
The witness called WRIGHT PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE an hour later.
NOTE: This account is currently under investigation, and the videotape will be subjected to computer analysis
30- year UFO investigator Jerry Black (625-2613) received a telephone call on Wednesday, March 26, from an anonymous contact at the Wilmington Airport. The contact advised Black that "Two F-16 jets would be conducting training maneuvers in the Clermont County vicinity for the next several hours. The jets originated from the Springfield, Ohio Air Base." This information was acqired by the contact at the Wilmington airport, who reportedly observed the two fighter jets, and called a friend at the Springfield, Ohio airbase to verify their operations in the area. This was strictly an UNOFFICIAL advisement, both to the contact at the Wilmington airport and the relay to Jerry Black.
The following morning, Black placed a phone call to the WILMINGTON AIRPORT CONTROL TOWER. Black learned that there was NO DISRUPTION in air traffic on March 26, as witnesses had claimed. According to the supervisor at the Wilmington Tower, no FEDERAL EXPRESS or AIRBORNE EXPRESS flights begin until 11:00 P.M. A check of the log book revealed NO ENTRIES concerning F-16s or FLARES reported at the WILMINGTON TOWER. Black conducted the telephone interview with the air tower supervisor at 1:30 p.m., March 27. The supervisor added that the tower is unmanned until 10:00, FLIGHTS COMMENCE AROUND 11:00 p.m.
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