Reported: 2006-03-12 13:24 Pacific
Duration: 3 minutes
No of observers: 5
Location: West Point, NY, USA
Characteristics: Lights on object
Large, slow craft cirlces over West Point, NY, in late spring of 1990.
In the late spring of 1990, I received a call from my neighbor - the wife of a workmate and my wife's friend - who lived across our parking lot in military housing on top of Stoney Lonesome, a small mountain at West Point, NY. She said, go outside and look up . ..
I did so and over my head came a set of lights in a boomerang configuation. (Immediately after this event, I made a drawing of the lights, but have since lost it). The lights were arranged in five or six sets of three. The three lights in each set were identical: pastel yellow, green and blue. There were some smaller red lights, but not in a configuration common on commercial or military aircraft. The sets of lights were absolutely symetrical in their arrangement and fixed in their relationship. My wife joined me and alerted our neighbors to our right who also came outside to look. The lights were relatively low, and I could hear the throb of an engine. The sound is best described as the sound made when a set of twin boat engines is operating a little out of synch. Its speed was very slow and it made a turn around our small area during which I saw a small red light behind the "craft" move suddenly to the craft and disappear, like it was on a tether. Its speed remained slow, so slow that I wondered if it was ligher than air . . . faster than drifting (there was no perceptible wind) but definitely powered in a direction at a speed that should not have supported aerodynamic flight. As the craft completed its maneuver, it moved east toward the Hudson River. It was soon behind the two story duplex across from me. I estimated its altitude above me at about 400 feet (based upon clarity with which I could see the lights and hear the sound). It was two fists wide, perhaps. Using the roof line of the opposing duplex (which eventually obscured the craft from view) as a reference, I make the following estimate of its size. The duplex was approximately 30 feet tall (top of roof line) and 40 feet wide. When it was obsured by the roof line, the craft was about half the width of the duplex. If the craft was at 400 feet and did not change altitude as it moved east, and my eyes were at about 5 feet above the ground, then the craft's width was approximately equal to 8000/25 or 320 feet, a very large craft. I also estimate that the distance from my viewing point to the duplex roofline was 80 feet, making the distance the craft traveled before it was obscured to be approximately 32000/25 or 1240 feet, almost 1/4 mile. It probably took about 30 seconds for the craft to travel that distance once it headed that way, making its speed to that point approximately 30 miles per hour, very slow for an aircraft! (I did these calculations as I am now making this report).
I called Stewart AFB and reported the sighting . . . or more appropriately inquired as to what might have been over this Federal installation. A coupld days later they returned my call and told me it was several ultra-lights operating in formation. After seeing this craft do a 270 degree turn without changing geometry and after hearing a sound that did not equate to more than two engines, I knew this was not a plausible explanation.
Strangely enough, I shortly thereafter was given the book Communion by Whitley Striber. I didn't even realize, as I read it, that he lives across the Hudson and a bit south from West Point. It was amazing to read his descriptions and the explanations given to him by Steward AFB! The following week I talked to a couple of the cadets we sponsored and learned that they heard cadets talking about something strange they saw circling over the Academy! Lastly, my partner's father saw the same object in Connecticuit approximately the same time! I didn't learn of that until 13 years later.
For your notes, I was at the time a Major in the Army teaching electrical engineering at the US Military Academy, from which I graduated in 1976; I recieved a MSEE (control systems) from the University of Washington in Seattle prior to teaching at the Academy. I do consider myself a trained observer of scientfic data and annomalies.
Witness indicates that the date of the event is approximate. PD
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