"It was in the southern sky. It seemed to be hovering," said Trevor Lowder, 32.
Lowder arrived at work shortly after 6 a.m. when a co-worker alerted him to a strange light in the still-dark sky. Running outside, Lowder said the light was clearly visible with the naked eye, about half the brightness of Venus. Once outside, he watched the object for several minutes before it appeared to accelerate out of view.
"It was disc-shaped," Lowder said. "I'm very, very sure that it was not natural. I've got to tell you, this is the first time I've seen something like this."
When a commercial airliner approached from the east, the object dimmed, pulsated and then disappeared, appearing to accelerate rapidly. "I'm very sure that I caught a glimpse of a metallic reflection," Lowder said.
About 25 minutes later, five jet aircraft arrived in the area where the light had been. "I've never seen that many planes clustered together," he said.
A co-worker, Justin Harrison, said he also saw the strange, early morning light. He described it as a distinctly yellow glow that either remained stationary or was moving very slowly. Harrison also confirmed the appearance of multiple aircraft in the area of the light about 30 minutes after its disappearance.
An official from the Federal Aviation Administration for the Western-Pacific region, which covers Arizona, said he was unaware of any aerial activity that could explain the strange light. Lake Havasu also lies in the middle of several Air Force bases and other military facilities, but spokesmen from both the Luke and Nellis Air Force bases, the closest facilities to the city, said there was no Air Force activity in the area Thursday morning.
"I know for a fact it couldn't have been us," said Lt. Bryan Bouchard, of Luke Air Force base.
The small, little-known Holmes comet, generally invisible to the naked eye, recently grew 400,000 times in brightness, and would likely have been visible as a brownish-yellow light in Lake Havasu's dark skies. However, the comet would have appeared in the northeast corner of the sky, near the constellation Perseus, while the strange light reported Thursday was said to have appeared in the southwestern sky, between Lake Havasu and Parker.
Astronomers from the Seward Observatory at Arizona State University said they could think of no other stellar event that could be responsible for the brief but brilliant appearance of the light.
The sky Wednesday night was also full of unexplained lights. Resident Jillian Danielson said she spotted six stationary yellowish-white lights high above the mountains to the south of town, around 7:45 p.m. The lights were in a straight row, and mysteriously disappeared after a few moments (full disclosure: Danielson contributes freelance material to Today's-News).
Barbara Plante, a spokesperson for Luke Air Force base, said the international space station and the space shuttle were briefly visible to the naked eye at around 6:15 Wednesday night. However, the lights, with about the luminosity of Venus, streaked across the northern sky in about five minutes, Plante said.
The lights would be visible again Thursday night, in the southern sky, she said.
Strange lights in the sky over Arizona are nothing new. In 1997, thousands of residents in Phoenix observed six evenly spaced orange-red orbs hovering over the city, and a physician captured the phenomenon on video. The "Phoenix lights," as they were eventually known, caused a worldwide media sensation when no earthy explanation for their appearance was forthcoming.
According to the Arizona Republic, military officials ultimately blamed the phenomenon on flares dropped by jets from the Barry M. Goldwater Range. But despite the official explanation, many remain skeptical, and one researcher said analysis of the video of the lights proved they were not flares.
Comment: Unmentioned is the fact that former Arizona governor Fife Symington himself came out and said he saw an "alien spacecraft" flying over Phoenix. At the time he tried to debunk the sighting.
Dozens of city residents and Lake Havasu visitors have also reported strange sights in the sky to several national UFO networks, whose findings are available online.
Sightings of unknown craft are also not limited to ordinary citizens.
According to a new book by actress Shirley McClaine, Democratic presidential candidate Rep. Dennis Kucinich sighted a large triangular craft hovering above him while in Washington state several years ago, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported this week.
For those interested in less mysterious astral phenomenon, sky-watchers will be treated to a meteor shower this November, around Thanksgiving. The shower is known as the Leonides because of its proximity to the constellation Leo.
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