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National UFO Reporting Center
Sighting Report
Occurred : 6/18/1981 03:00 (Entered as : 06/18/1981 3:00)
Reported: 1/6/2005 11:44:12 AM 11:44
Posted: 1/19/2005
Location: Mondel, NM
Shape: Unknown
Duration:10-15 minutes
We did not make out an object, the light was too bright.

The non-factory air conditioning in our car would fail against the heat of the desert so we decided to drive home from Southern California to Central Texas at night. My fiancé (now my wife) and I were somewhere past the Arizona/New Mexico border going east on I-10 in the wee hours of the morning, Thursday, June 18, 1981.

We were barely across the NM border somewhere near Mondel, NM, as I noted hwys 80 and 338 coming in from the south as the next signs of any roads. I’m not sure of the exact time, but we had been driving since 4 p.m., stopped to eat for a half-hour in Tucson, and it’s about ten hours to Deming where I have relatives. I remember this because I knew we’d miss them as we’d drive by too early in the morning. So I place this observation at between 2:30 and 3:30 a.m.

As we were driving, totally alone on the open stretch of pretty straight highway, we both noticed a very bright light to the north. At first, because of the intensity, we thought it was rather close. But as we kept driving, and it remained in about the same position, we kept talking about it and placing it farther and farther away. We were traveling along for at least ten minutes and we could still see it directly north of us, perhaps the equivalent of one car length more westerly than when we had first observed it. It did not seem to be moving. This was 1981 and I don’t think I had ever seen any vapor, tungsten, halogen or other lights - just fluorescents and incandescents. I had seen a search-light close up, and this was the intensity of about twenty of those. The light was not directed at anything, had more of an emission than a beam, and it did not appear to be moving. The only reason we noticed it as strange was that it had such brightness from so far away. We could see that it was above the landscape, no more than a hundred feet, but it just looked like a very intense factory lighting system that appeared (at our distance) to be one solid light.

Then it moved, or I should say "shot" from our left to directly in front of us. In less time than our eyes could adjust and follow, the light was above I-10 about three hundred yards ahead. It didn’t have any searching quality. The movement made no noise (we had our back windows open.) We could make out no shape. It was just one intense source of white light which flooded everything on the ground around it and us. This one light could fill six football fields. I instinctively moved my foot to the brakes but, before I could apply them, it again shot up and to our right (south) and disappeared into the sky above us in less than two seconds. This time our eyes followed it, she out her window and I through the sunroof, until it just blipped out. We both said, "That was no building!" Fortunately, we both witnessed the same thing and talked about it for many miles afterward. Neither of us could attribute this phenomenon to sleepiness, reflections on windshields, somebody playing tricks with mirrors, air balloons, or any known aircraft or light source.