Ground Observer’s View: 3:08 at November-1
SSgt. James Bond, A1C Joseph Jablonski, and A1C Gregory Adams
View looking south from the November-1 LCF at 3:08 am, 24 Oct. 1968
N 48° 45’ 34.00” / W 101° 35’ 30.99”
SSgt. James F. BOND, (November-Flight Security Controller, 862nd SPS).
In his AF-117, the object was first observed at 0308. Bond includes a drawing showing his location nearly 10 miles north of the N-7 Launch Facility indicating that the initial observation was in the south-southeast at 15° altitude. His “Attention was first called by a maintenance team at the launch facility.” His impression was that the object was 10-12 miles distant. He indicated that “No shape could be seen and it moved in directions indicated below,” providing a drawing of the large circular or oblong CCW movements of the object across an area subtending an angle of over 65°. He could not estimate the speed. Regarding the conditions, he notes that the night was clear and few stars were visible.
He describes the phenomenon stating: “The object was a light, but shape couldn’t be determined. Appeared to be self luminous. Appeared to be solid. Edges appeared to be fuzzy. Appeared as a point of light.” The object did not move in a straight line, it did stand still, change color and brightness, disappear and reappear. In comparison to a common object he stated, “Object appeared about the same as landing lights on aircraft (B-52 diverted to area) except for flashing red lights on B-52. The object acted like a helicopter in flight.”
Regarding the angular size he noted: “A match tip held at arm’s length would have been covered.” This would be approximately 23 arc minutes or .75 times the diameter of the full moon.
A1C Joseph JABLONSKI, (November-Security Alert Team, 862nd SPS).
In his AF-117, the object was first observed at 0308. Jablonski includes a drawing showing his location at N-1 and the object 9 miles south (slightly east), and a second drawing locating the object 2-3 miles south-southeast of the N-7 Launch Facility. He notes the initial observation was in the south-southeast at 35° altitude. He was first drawn to the phenomenon when, “Other persons had brought it to my attention. Although I had not seen it immediately, they gave a good estimate of its location. When it reappeared 3 or 4 minutes later it was quite bright and gradually weakened.”
He describes the phenomenon indicating: “The object was self-luminous with glowing orange-red, white, greenish alternating and at times combinations could be seen. The object appeared rather solid, although not very wide and slender in shape. Edges were fuzzy. Lights were much too bright to determine exact shape. This object appeared much brighter than a star.”
Following the initial sighting at 0308, Bond dispatched the team to assist at N-7. At one point they stopped the vehicle while observing the phenomenon. Two similar objects were observed: “When first dispatched to N-7 another object exactly the same appeared out of the east and had picked up speed in a path moving towards the other. Never did see the two join or meet as the second one disappeared and no longer could be seen.”
In response to whether the phenomenon was in sight continuously he noted: “Not due to our movement, but the behavior pattern of the phenomenon. Object appeared as orangish-red lighted, seemed to switch to almost completely white and there was some green. This pattern was not always the same and at certain times a combination of all could be seen at once. Object first appeared to hover then move slowly, speed up, always alternating in color. Then lights would vanish, but return some minutes after.” He estimates the speed as approximately 70-100 knots and impression of the distance of the phenomenon as 3-5 miles. Regarding conditions, he notes that the night was clear and a few stars were visible.
Regarding the angular size: “Offhand I’d say that close to one-half would be covered by the match head [held at arm’s length],” which would be approximately 46 arc minutes, or nearly 1.5 times the diameter of the full moon.
A1C Gregory ADAMS, (November-Security Alert Team, 862nd SPS).
In his AF-117, the object was first observed at 0308. Adams includes a drawing showing his location at N-1 and the object 9 miles south (slightly east), and a second drawing locating the object 2 miles south-southeast of the N-7 Launch Facility. He notes the initial observation was in the south-southeast at 30° altitude. He was first drawn to the phenomenon when, “A maintenance team working at November 7 called over the radio.” Following the initial sighting at 0308, Bond dispatched the SAT to assist at N-7: “When enroute to N-7 another object appeared (same as the first one). They seemed to get pretty close at one time and all of a sudden one disappeared.”
In response to the question of whether the phenomenon was in sight continuously he notes: “Our movement had no relationship with appearing and disappearing of UFO. UFO seemed to assume a stationary position at first then a hovering position, it would then speed up. The reddish orange light kept changing white and occasionally green.” Regarding conditions, he notes that the night was clear, a few stars were visible, and estimates the speed as “50 to 150 knots. Speed varied from time to time,” and impression of the distance of the phenomenon as 2-5 miles.
He describes the phenomenon indicating: “The lights were reddish orange- changing to white and green. Lights were self-luminous and very bright. Size and shape hard to distinguish,” and compared the object to “8 cars with bright lights all over them.” In addition: “I never could distinguish the shape because of the bright light. However it seemed to be shaped as a wiener. This is the best description I can give, but I’m not completely sure of the shape.” He provided a drawing of an oblong object alternating east and west.
Regarding the angular size he noted: “estimating 1/3 would be covered by match head.” This would be approximately 70 arc minutes, or more than two times the diameter of the full moon.
According to the Base Base Operations dispatcher’s log (03:28-03:58):
0828 (0328). Two are seen now. Jet engines heard now very clearly.
0829 (0329). Moving S/W of site and gaining altitude.
0830 (0330). Just are in sight now when it passed over site it looked like two high headlights. Moving real slow when oversight – could hear engines.
0833 (0333). Disappeared – moved S/E to far from eyesight.
0836 (0336). Disappeared for 3 minutes then reappeared. Same spot and moving back toward N 7.
0838 (0338). Coming out of S/E once more.
0840 (0340). Hovering 3 miles away 1 to 2000 feet very dim white light.
0841 (0341). Moving in toward N-7 again, light getting brighter. Hovering.
0842 (0342). In one position.
0844 (0344). White lights went out, green light on and moving rapidly now. Green light gone out and white light coming back on.
0850 (0350). Object N/W, reversed and moving off again S/E.
0850 (0350). Disappear then reappears and coming back N-7 from S/E, lights getting brighter. 0856. Still moving from S/E.
0856 (0356). Object now West 1 to 2000 feet.
0857 (0357). Now approximately 600 feet. Red flashing light moving N/W.
0858 (0358). Now white light hovering 500 to 1000 feet. Lights now flashing white.