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The Phoenix Lights Phenomenon- in Yuma?Tim King Salem-News.com
Were lights witnessed outside Yuma, Arizona also from the UFO sighted over Phoenix?
(YUMA, Ariz.) - An award winning documentary, 'Phoenix Lights' examines the mid to late 1990's sightings of mysterious lights that thousands of witnesses reported passing over Phoenix, Arizona.
At one point the lights were 'hovering' in place near this desert city's Sky Harbor Airport. Air traffic controllers confirmed seeing them, though the lights failed to show up on radar.
They were witnessed by so many people, that it is virtually impossible that something wasn't in the sky, but what was it and what was their reason for being here?
The reason I am writing this, is that I believe this phenomena also visited the Yuma, Arizona area, and a point in between Yuma and Phoenix.
I witnessed two distinct, very similar sightings of lights, the first of which were spotted once near Gila Bend, Arizona, by my wife Bonnie King and myself.
Late one night as we drove down the freeway, we watched multiple lights hover in the distance, thinking at first there must be a business or even a rave out in the desert. We kept our eyes on them for several minutes until they quickly sped out of sight.
A few nights later I saw something very similar while visiting an historic ruin on the edges of Yuma, along with a city of Yuma employee.
These events always stood out in my mind to a degree because they were very hard to explain.
And while there will never be a real or full explanation, it is noteworthy that this happened in a relative time frame to one of the Phoenix Lights sightings.
As a reporter, I am not unaccustomed to reports of things that are unusual.
There was even a day in Las Vegas a few years later, when I saw objects in the sky that were very hard to explain, while taking a break with a weather anchor from the TV station I worked for.
We looked at the objects and talked about it, but nothing came of it. The point is that over 99% of the time that people see something, nothing comes of it. But the lights in Phoenix were seen by thousands of people and reported repeatedly.
The airport radar can't see or record these things, but the fact that the Phoenix Lights are on the national public radar keeps the interest very much alive.
Dr. Lynne D. Kitei, M.D., Executive Producer with The Phoenix Lights Network, also CEO of Health Education Learning Programs, says the critically acclaimed and award winning documentary Phoenix Lights features forty-four credible eyewitnesses from scientists to the military to the governor of Arizona.
The program is very thought provoking, and while I definitely had heard people talk about the lights in Phoenix, I had no idea until seeing Dr Lynne's program, that the description was so similar to my two observations, or just so interesting and well documented in general.
Dr. Lynne Kitei said, "...On March 13, 1997, while looking skyward for a glimpse of the Halle-Bopp Comet, thousands of Arizona residents also witnessed a mile-wide, V-shaped formation of lights slowly and silently gliding over their heads. ABC, NBC, CNN, MSNBC, The Discovery Channel and USA Today were just a few to report on the story. UFO buffs call it: 'the most documented mass sighting ever recorded'." (The Phoenix Lights)
Bonnie and I spent the years 1995 through 1997 working for the NBC station in Yuma, Arizona, located along the Mexican border where California intersects with Arizona. We spent many weekends visiting our friends Ken and Kris Grandlund, who lived in Scottsdale, Arizona at the time.
This particular visit took place on a Friday night in late 1995. Neither of us can pinpoint the exact date, but we are looking through old notes to see if we can.
We were driving east on Interstate-8 in our Mercedes 240D when we looked to the north and saw what appeared to be a factory, with the lights from smokestacks burning brightly against an otherwise black sky. The location was a number of miles past Gila Bend, heading toward Phoenix.
I said to Bonnie, "Is there a factory out here?"
"Not that I can think of," she replied. We actually pulled over and stared into the distance, but could not see anything more than the lights, which appeared to be stationary, bright and orange in color, close to the color of a flame.
We were able to note the freeway marker number and on our return trip the following Sunday, we remembered to check the area out. As we had suspected might be the case, there is not a factory or any other kind of structure or sign of human development in this location, or anywhere within miles of it.
Bonnie recalls seeing twice the number of lights that I recall. I can only be sure that we witnessed an anomaly. I knew as soon as I saw the lights in the main photo accompanying this story, that I was seeing something quite identical to what I do clearly recall.
We found it very interesting and discussed the unique sighting with people at that time, though nothing really resulted from it. I didn't happen to encounter anyone else who claimed to have witnessed it.
The image on the right incidentally, also of the Phoenix Lights, is not similar to what I saw, except in color. There are many impressions and also a great number of photos taken of these events.
I saw this strange set of lights, or something very similar, a second time. Because we are going back a full 15 years, the whole matter is a bit fuzzy.
I was out was to explore the ruins of Yuma's oldest western settlement; an adobe ranch that the city was placing on a historical roster.
I am sad to say that I don't recall the name of the Yuma city employee who accompanied me that day. I want to say the name 'Kim'. If that person is reading this, I would appreciate hearing from you and learning your recollection of what we observed.
I know we traveled to the adobe ruin during the day as I used the opportunity to videotape the remains of the building, but it was dark when we returned to downtown Yuma in the early evening.
Basically the sighting was the same to me. A row of (as I recall) six lights in the sky at an unknown altitude. Not that high would be my amateur estimation; only perhaps a few hundred feet up.
Again, it was dark and there was nothing else to see; nothing to compare it to.
The city employee agreed that there was nothing in that particular location, certainly nothing that contained those lights.
US Marine Corps Explanation
There is an Army base a few miles outside of Yuma known as 'YPG'- Yuma Proving Ground. Interesting things take place at this base; testing new objects, the military's advanced free-fall jump school, etc. But this is not near the place where the sighting took place.
Too bad, that could have served as some type of explanation. It meant that the Marine Corps was the only possibility as far as getting any possible type of confirmation.
I returned home after dropping my passenger off at city hall, where I called the air control tower at the Yuma Marine Corps Air Station and asked what they knew.
I told them I was with the Eyewitness 11 news team, the local TV station, and asked if they had heard of any strange sightings of lights outside of town.
Interestingly, rather than try to simply dismiss my informational query, which honestly I expected, they answered me. They told me I had seen lights for a training operation, a 'war game'.
They said they were "flares".
As a former Marine who was actually based at Yuma for a time, I know the odds of what they described were slim. Yuma is not an infantry base.
There are Marine bases where infantry training takes place every day, but this part of the desert outside of Yuma, but not on the Marine base, was not ever otherwise used for this purpose.
I also know exactly what type of flares they were talking about, and the light that the objects I saw on both occurrences, were different in nature.
The Marines use flares that turn night into day, they descend on parachutes and only last so long. What I saw both times, was not falling gradually toward earth, instead very stationary.
The flare photo in the rense.com article shows that the flares leave a smoke trail as they descend. No matter what, they are always earthbound and the small parachutes don't delay their fall by very much.
Again, after having watched 'Phoenix Lights', I noted similarities, starting with the year it happened, and the fact that Phoenix and Yuma are only 180 or so miles apart.
In each event I saw them in an area remotely populated only by passing drivers, unlike Phoenix where they were viewed by so many people simultaneously.
I contacted Dr. Lynne Kitei and advised her of this recollection and the number of similarities.
She was certainly intrigued and agrees that it very likely could be the same phantom lights since so many story elements match.
Dr. Lynne said, "We actually had a very close sighting to our home in Feb. 1995 and the same phenomena appeared two months before the mass sighting in 1997." Wonder if we witnessed similar sightings?
The dates do not exactly line up, as I hadn't moved to Yuma until March of 1995, but who is to say that these things are on a schedule?
If they are not observed by the Sky Harbor air traffic radar, then our chances of mapping their locations and movements with anything beyond our human eyes seems unlikely.
I strongly urge those reading this to watch the internationally award winning Documentary 'Phoenix Lights', conveniently located below thanks to YouTube. As a producer, Dr. Lynne had real success locating people to help tell the story. "No one can do it alone and I have been so blessed to have such wonderful colleagues and friends help in this important effort," added Dr. Lynne.
She also says people interested in this story should purchase and read her book, The Phoenix Lights...A Skeptic's Discovery That We Are Not Alone
Regarding this achievement, the doctor said, "There is much more to the story. Trust you will appreciate the contents."
So now I have a copy, her publisher sent one our way so that I can write a book review. From what I have seen so far, it is going to be a sizzlingly good one.
Whatever passed over Phoenix, we can not be sure. But as you will see by watching the documentary, there are a great number of people who could never be convinced they didn't see exactly what they describe.
In Phoenix there are many varying reports; some people say they could clearly see a space craft.
Whatever it was, there is little or no disagreement over the idea that something, very likely from out of this world, spent some time in 1995 and 1997, in the desert Southwest.
These are the 'snowbird' months. Perhaps the craft was staffed with future retirees seeking a great location for their final days. If you ever spend a winter here, then you too might believe just about anything is possible!
Whatever you think of these reports or the existence of UFOs it is obvious that all these witnesses saw something in Arizona. You can't write off all the witnesses by saying maybe they all had one too many beers or glasses of wine from the wine rack on the night they witnessed the lights.
That argument may work to discredit one or two witnesses but certainly not the thousands who reported seeing the bizarre lights in the Phoenix and Yuma sky.
Anyone who witnessed a similar phenomenon, is encouraged to drop an email to the address below. You can also just leave a comment. I am very curious about out of Phoenix sightings in Arizona.
The comment section of this story can serve as a good location for a gathering of witness statements, if there are any. If you leave a comment and want people to believe it, then please use a real name. Please keep it on topic. Rude comments will be dismissed, (deleted) so keep it clean.
UPDATE: VIDEO NOW ONLY AVAILABLE ON I-TUNES
To learn more, visit: The Phoenix Lights Network
Sources include: Salem-News.com Special Features Dept.
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