Between 1962 and 66
Glowing Orange Object Buzzes U.S.S. Lexington
- Mid 1960s -
Location of Sighting: Gulf of Mexico aboard U.S.S. Lexington
Date of Sighting: (1962 to 1966 - exact date unknown)
Time of Sighting: around midnight
Date Reported: February 12, 2005
Number of Witnesses: several crew members (exact number unknown)
Description (in witness's own words with some editing): While serving aboard the U.S.S. Lexington CVS-16 (aircraft carrier), I was an elevator operator for aircraft. One night around 12 midnight I saw a large orange glow in the sky. I called flight deck control. They said they had it on radar and tried to get it to identify itself. When they got no reply, they sent 2 F4 jets up. You could see their afterburners and the F4s did not even come close to catching it. The object (light) took off out of sight. As soon as the jets returned, it came back. This pattern repeated itself 3 times. After the 3rd time, guess they thought it was no threat. It followed us for about half hr [a half hour] I guess then left. We were told the next day to say nothing about the sightings. I wish I had at least written down time/day/year, but did not. Even years after I did not know who to report it to. Then as time elapsed more, I figured no one would believe me. I just thought that I would report it as I remembered it. We were operating in the Gulf of Mexico out of Pensacola, FL. I worked the hanger [sic] deck elevator. I was in the V3 division/aircraft handlers.
Investigator's Notes: I have mailed the witness a list of additional questions and asked for some clarifications of his experience. I received a response to my follow-up questions. The witness confirmed that his tenure in the Navy was from 1962 to 1966 and that he does not remember the year of the sighting. I was hopeful that the witness may be able to reach other personnel who were privy to the sighting. However, he said that he was not in touch with any of his fellow servicemen who experienced the sighting. The witness also further stated that no nuclear weapons were on the U.S.S. Lexington at the time of the sighting. He stated that F4 Phantom aircraft were scrambled after the UFO. He was uncertain as to the location of the ship when the UFO was sighted. He did say that the event occurred in the Gulf of Mexico several hundred miles from the Pensacola, Florida Naval Air Station. Apparently he was debriefed by petty officers after the sighting and at that time was told not to say anything about the sighting. Having testimony from other crew members who were privy to the sighting would greatly strengthen the case. I plan to look through documents released through the Freedom of Information Act to see if the U.S. Navy acknowledged that this incident occurred. This sighting is interesting because it apparently involved both radar and visual sightings. Other reports of UFOs following ships have been reported. (Many of these ships were carrying nuclear weapons.)
Reference for the above text is: Website: UFOs Northwest. With thanks to Mr. William Puckett for permission to post to this website:
UFOCAT PRN – NONE
North America – United States, Gulf of Mexico
Pensacola Latitude 30-21-26 N, Longitude 087-18-23 W (D-M-S) [military – Naval Air Station Pensacola]
Gulf of Mexico Latitude 25-00-00 N, Longitude 090-00-00 W [gulf]
Lexington’s history 1960-1969:
Lexington's next Far Eastern tour began late in 1960 and was extended well into 1961 by renewed tension in Laos. Returning to west coast operations, she was ordered in January 1962 to prepare to relieve USS Antietam (CVS 36) as aviation training carrier in the Gulf of Mexico, and she was redesignated CVS 16 on 1 October 1962. However, during the Cuban missile crisis, she resumed duty as an attack carrier, and it was not until 29 December 1963 that she relieved Antietam at Pensacola.
Lexington operated out of her home port, Pensacola, as well as Corpus Christi and New Orleans, qualifying student aviators and maintaining the high state of training of both active duty and reserve naval aviators. Lexington marked her 200,000th arrested landing 17 October 1967, and was redesignated CVT 16 on 1 January 1969.
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