|Occurred : 7/4/2000 22:00 (Entered as : 07/04/00 22:00)
Reported: 3/9/2001 15:16
Location: Des Moines, IA
|Red Light in the Southern Sky on the Fourth of July
My fiance and I were sitting on our apartment deck, watching fireworks from Urbandale, the suburb to our west. I noticed a red light in the southern sky away from the fireworks, approximately 45 degrees up from the horizon, sitting motionless. I asked my fiance if she saw it too, and she stated yes. We watched it for a couple of minutes and it did nothing. We both got up and went down to the parking lot and I got out a pair of binoculars to view it with. My binoculars are fairly low quality and they did not help much, but I did observe something apparently fall from the light and leave a burning trail as it went down to the south of us. Another guy was in the lot when we were looking at it, and I asked if he saw it too, and he stated he did. I told my fiance to stay there while I ran up to get a cell phone to call somebody to see if they could observe it. But while I was running up to our apartment, my fiance said it grew smaller and vanished. While we were still out in the parking lot, it (or something similar to it) appeared or reappeared in approximately the same position in the sky, but only further to the east. This light, too, vanished after only a short period of time. My fiance and I both discussed what it might have been. Could it have been a burning ember from the fireworks caught in the upper atmosphere winds? We surmised not because we did not see any motion whatsoever. An airplane or a helicopter? Like I stated, we thought not because of the lack of motion. An acquaintance suggested it might have been a homemade hot air balloon. That seemed plausible to me because, when I was a kid, my dad used to make them out of sheets of plastic and sterno fuel. Anyway, I know we were not the only ones to see this, because I've read other accounts of this on this web site and the next day on a local radio talk show, I've been told people were calling in describing the same object. Was this of extraterrestrial origin? I have no idea (and I tend to be a skeptic), but it does fall under! the def inition of UFO-Unidentified Flying Object.
((NUFORC Note: Please see other similar reports from across the U. S. for the same date. PD))