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National UFO Reporting Center Sighting Report
Occurred : 10/3/2009 19:30 (Entered as : 10/03/2009 19:30)
Reported: 2/1/2014 12:18:42 PM 12:18
Posted: 2/7/2014
Location: Lawrence, KS
Shape: Sphere
Duration: 5 minutes
Characteristics: There were lights on the object
Object appeared as I would imagine a flying Chinese lantern would look like (I've never seen one!). My wife and I (ages 46 and 54 at the time) had just dropped our college sophomore daughter off at her apartment (18th and Kentucky Streets) after taking her to dinner, and before we pulled out of the parking lot, we saw a strange glowing ball of light low in the northern sky and moving South in our direction.

At first I thought it was coming from a power line following the same direction, but quickly realized it was not, and it was so unusual (I am an Aerospace Engineer and multi-engine rated Private pilot) that I had to pull over to watch it. We both observed it for several minutes as it appeared to continually/slowly move South and increase in altitude. When it was approximately overhead, it appeared to quit moving laterally but continued to rise until it was out of site. We did not hear any sounds emanating from it and saw no other aircraft in the area.

I contacted the nearest airport's (North of the sighting area) manager the next day to ask if he knew of any aircraft departing the previous evening or of anyone launching a Chinese lantern from the airport area; he didn't. I also Googled to see if I could find anyone reporting what I saw; I found nothing. So, I laid it to rest, but was so mystified that I entered the date in my PC's calendar, so when I just discovered this website, I was able to check out reports for that date. Sadly, there were none similar or in the area on that same date.