Flying saucers? Little green men? Your neighbor’s new drone? The truth is out there.
There were 102 reports of suspected close encounters of the first kind filed in Illinois last year with the non-profit National UFO Reporting Center (NUFORC).
The (most) official organization “dedicated to the collection and dissemination of objective UFO data” recently issued its final monthly update for 2018. Reports are taken through NUFORC’s telephone hotline, or through an online report form.
Here are the 2018 reports from downstate Illinois, unedited:
Feb. 13, 4:30 p.m., Mattoon:
“I was with my wife recycling at the recycle bins. The clouds looked like whip cream so I was trying out my new camera mx app filters. I put it on negative and noticed a black dot moving between the water tower and the American flag. I lost it. We drove away.
“However, I continued filming the sky. Later when looking back at the video I noticed something that looked cloaked flying over the car. Upon further investigation I found that the black dot was actually a part of a triangle of dots moving in unison and other dark areas moved with them. The drive also catched many other unidentified flying objects. The video mist be watched to be believed.”
May 17, 10:30 a.m., Pontoon Beach:
“3 glowing dots that moved in formation of crescent type shape 20 seconds and glowing yellow orange. Dots were originally whitish-blue. Finally split and only one dot visible.”
June 2, 6 p.m., Millstadt:
“Bright white light suddenly appeared and then slowly disappeared to nothing. Repeated several times, moving locations every time. Only happened about 5-6 times. After that I didn’t see anything else.”
July 8, 8:30 p.m., Edwardsville:
“Seen 2 veetical circle bright lights moving up towards space at a very high speed until it disappeared in space. Light was brighter than a star.”
Sept. 19, 3:37 a.m., near Scott Air Force Base:
“Witness went to the kitchen and from my patio doors saw two pulsating, strobe like lights in the Eastern sky. The lights flashed red and white and were above the tree line. The lights came closer growing in size and hovered side by side. The one on the left moved away from the other light and the lights of both objects pulsed faster and brighter. Then the light on the right went to the East and witness watched until it was out of sight. The other light went south and was observed to move fast across the sky until it was out of sight. Neither one diverted from its path, in other words they moved straight in a path. Witness first thought of the lights that flashed on high towers but realized there are no towers there. Witness thought it might be a reflection but there was nothing in the house behind that was lighting up and there were no windows behind witness. The lights reminded witness of strobe lights as they were pulsating very fast. They were too large and too bright to be airplane lights and moved much faster. Witness lives near an Air-Force base and an airport so observes airplanes, jets, and helicopters on an hourly basis. The only thought was that it might have been large drones.”
Sept. 21, 2:30 p.m., Carbondale:
“I was traveling east on the University Mall Drive, approaching the Post Office. I happened to look up and saw a black object moving from, approximately, North to South at about the speed you would expect a helicopter to travel about 60 mph. We frequently have medi-vac helicopters in the area as there is a local hospital 3 miles west of that location and I am used to seeing them in the air. In fact I used to be one of the ride-along RNs many times in them so I am used to watching them. I estimate the altitude at about 800-1000 ft. or so.
This was not a helicopter, I am certain. Because of the unusual characteristics of this object, however, I continued to look at it as best I could while driving.
Although the altitude and speed were similar to a helicopter, as mentioned, no other aspects matched. There was no noise, no tail boom, no skids, no windows, and was a completely different shape. This appeared to be sort of an elongated, many-sided polyhedron. As it moved, the sun would reflect off a shiny facet now and then as if it had a glossy surface.
It did not move like a balloon. There was no bobbing or slight irregularity in motion as one would expect from a balloon. Its course was steady. Also, the speed at which is was traveling, as above, estimated at about 60 mph, was way above the surface wind speed by a lot. I do not have a wind report for the altitude the object was traveling at (800-1000ft), but there was at least one vulture aloft also in the area, about 300 yards further away than the flight path of the object and I judged, from the steady circling of the vulture, that winds aloft were not very high. That is, there was not a noticeable southward drift of the vulture’s pattern that could match the speed of the object.
I pulled into the Post Office parking lot and got out of my car to get a better look. My cell phone was in a zippered bag and I was concerned it would take too long to retrieve so I just continued observing. It came directly over IL Hwy 13, the major East-West route through town, passed the Post Office and appeared to make one course change from about SSE to about due East, then head in that direction at a steady speed. This would be unusual behavior if it was a balloon because the course change happened cleanly with no bobbling or turbulence as one might see if a different air mass intercepted the object. The course change looked to me like I would see a helicopter perform, but, as I mentioned, there was no noise, no tail boom and no other characteristics like a helicopter. I watched it until I could not longer see it due to buildings and trees behind the Post Office.
The most striking features:
1. Silent and swift with no apparent lift surfaces or engine sounds.
2. Steady course with one course change. Stayed at same altitude during period of observation.
3. Nothing like anything I have ever seen in the sky. This I knew within seconds of spotting it.”
Nov. 21, 8:30 p.m., Bethalto:
“I’m an amateur astronomer (been observing for several years now) and was testing out some new accessories for my telescope. I had gone inside and when I came back out, that’s when I spotted the UFO. It was already halfway across the sky, (I first saw it at the zenith) it was traveling from NE to SW in a straight line.
Its rate of travel was comparable to satellites you often see in the night sky. However, it wasn’t small like a satellite. The light was a rich orange and looked about the size of a streetlight you’d see while driving. I believe it was at high altitude and no sound came from the object.
As stated in the beginning I was using my telescope that night, but saw the object with the naked eye.”
Nov. 22, 5:10 a.m., Mattoon:
“Me and my brother were leaving thanksgiving dinner, I was in my car and my brother stared pointing up, I got out and saw a very bright orange light, it was rather close, about the height a helicopter would fly. It was not blinking, but just a stale light. It was moving at a somewhat fast speed, but I managed to get 2 pictures of it. I got 3 other family members to come out and see it. By the time they got there it was nearly out of sight. We watched it until it was fully out of sight. It didn’t travel up, but away.”
NUFORC, which has logged 3,592 sightings in Illinois since 1974, investigates the more credible reports. But even though the truth is out there, the non-profit admits it’s not to be found in most reports.
“We always caution visitors to our website, as they read through the reports, to be on the alert for flawed reports, or even out-and-out hoaxes.”
Source: The Telegraph