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National UFO Reporting Center
Sighting Report
Occurred : 12/25/2008 20:00 (Entered as : 12/25/2008 20:00)
Reported: 12/26/2008 7:02:28 PM 19:02
Posted: 1/10/2009
Location: Sarasota, FL
Shape: Fireball
Duration:4-5 minutes
Two light objects sighted flying south off the west coast of Sarasota, FL

The following event was observed on December 25th 2008 at approximately 8pm eastern time from the 7000 block of Point of Rocks Rd, Sarasota, FL (N27-14.6 W082-32.00). The visibility was greater then 10 miles, the cloud layer was scattered at approximately 5000 feet and the winds were out of the south east at approximately 10-15 knots on the surface.

At 8pm eastern time, I observed a lighted object roughly 3 miles to the north west of my position about 60 degrees above the horizon, moving south paralleling the west coast of Siesta Key. The object initially appeared to be a plane with an engine fire but as it approached closer to my position it became apparent that it was more of a spear emitting light similar to intensity and appearance of a common marine flare, flickering yellow and orange/red in color.

The object traveled from its position north west of me, almost due south, paralleling the coast for about 2-3 miles. At its closest point of approach it was due west of my position by approximately 2 miles, or about 1.5 miles west of the beach of Point of Rocks. At this point the object appeared to stop moving and began to climb. I was unable to determine if the object actually stopped moving, or turned its motion directly away from me. Either way, the object climbed into the cloud deck and began to fade from sight as it passed through the 5000’ scattered cloud deck. As it began to climb and fade from sight, another object, identical in appearance to the first, appeared approximately 2 miles to the north west of my position at approximately the same altitude taking an almost identical flight path as the first. The first object had faded completely away by the time the second object made its closest point of approach to my position. It also appeared to stop or turn away from my position like the first, climb and penetrate the 5000’ cloud deck and fade from sight. The entire event took approximately 4 minutes from visually acquiring the first object to the second object’s fade from sight. My best estimates of their velocity would be in the 60-120 knot range. I estimate this based on the position of the object above the horizon in relation to the cloud deck which I estimated to be at approximately 5000’.

There was no sound associated with the objects, as mentioned above; they emitted a tremendous amount of light energy with flickering similar to a flare. I was able to train a high power telescope on the second object and saw nothing but a pulsating light that I would have reported as a flare if the trajectory had not been what it was.

I currently work as a professional offshore pilot in the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean. I have seen flares, fighter jets afterburners at night, oil rig burn offs, boat fires, large shooting stars breaking apart, plane crashes and countless other night time lights and phenomena. I am convinced that this was none of these.

Doing my best to confirm that I did not witness the flare of a vessel in distress, I spoke with the local Coast Guard Sector. As I was explaining what I observed, the Petty Officer Cut me off mid sentence and asked if I think I saw a UFO. I advised I was not sure when he told me that he just received a report from another source in the same area of an identical sighting and it was being reported as a UFO. I placed calls with all of the local Air Force and FAA airspace controllers, who all reported no operations in the area. I followed up with the Coast Guard on the December 26th, who advised there were no further developments with this case.

((NUFORC Note: We spoke with this witness via telephone, and we suspect that the person is a superlative witness. We would welcome reports from the other witnesses present, or from anyone else in the Sarasota, who may have been witness to the same event. PD))