|Occurred : 4/30/1943 23:00 (Entered as : 1943 23:00)
Reported: 2/23/2009 10:02:39 AM 10:02
Location: Bering Sea, AK
|1943 sighting of four linearly arranged red lights in Bering Sea
I was aboard the USS Williamson (Destroyer) in early 1943 during WWII. The weather was clear with calm seas. The night was very black. At the time of the sighting, we were patrolling the Bearing Sea north of the Alaskan Peninsula, bearing north at about 20 knots.
I was on watch at the starboard 20mm gun, second deck (galley deck). It was around 2300. My gun turret was above the deck house and there were no obstructions hindering my field of vision, allowing me to have a clear 360 degree view of the sea around the ship. There were four of us together at the starboard gun (I can get crew names and captain’s name).
The attention of both port and starboard gun crews was drawn to a row of red lights off the port side, traveling parallel to and slightly forward of the bow. I did not see the lights when they first approached so do not know the direction from which they came, or if they came out of the sea. There were at least eight lights in a row, evenly spaced, canted at about 15 degrees to horizontal. I would estimate the lights were no more than 100 yards from the ship. The lights held their relative position to one another throughout the sighting, and appeared to be about 10 feet apart. I would say that the light closest to the water (the lights were canted diagonal to horizontal at approximately 15 degrees) appeared to be about 30 feet above the water.
I estimate that it would require a cantaloupe held at arms length to cover a single light. I could not see a structure associated with the lights as there was nothing but blackness between the lights. The lights were a very deep red and did not cast a beam. The lights moved parallel to our ship, holding their position relative to the ship throughout the entire sighting.
The lights continued to pace the ship as I watched. This continued for at least one hour. I was relieved from watch at 2400. When I went below the lights were still visible. I was too tired to stay on deck and went below to sleep. The next day, the midnight gun crew said that the captain turned the ship and "tried" to chase the lights. I don’t know the outcome of this maneuver. I don’t know what the circumstances were when the lights disappeared. But I do know that I have not seen anything like this before or since.
((NUFORC Note: Source of report indicates that the date of the incident is approximate. PD))