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National UFO Reporting Center
Sighting Report
Occurred : 9/4/1983 15:10 (Entered as : 090483 15:10)
Reported: 3/29/2009 11:10:42 AM 11:10
Posted: 4/14/2009
Location: Maroa, IL
Shape: Disk
Duration::30 seconds
Enormous luminous disc seen over farmstead in broad daylight

In 1983, I was a sophomore in High School, staying with friends of the family in Argenta Illinois, while my father, stepmother, and baby half brother were in Massachusetts for five months where dad was doing coursework for his P.h.D.

One Sunday that September, I was riding with Dan, the father of the family I was staying with, on the way to Maroa, Illinois to have Sunday dinner at his wife's parent's house. I believe it was Sunday, September 4th 1983, but it could have been a later Sunday that month. Dan was in his late 20’s at the time, an insurance salesman, married with a 7-year old child. I was a just a boy in high school, editor of the school paper, active in the marching band and school plays. I went on to a successful career in radio broadcasting and commercial voice-over.

Dan was driving, and I was in the passenger seat of his black 1978 Gremlin. We were going approximately 50 miles per hour, due west along Washington Street Road between Argenta and Maroa, roughly two miles west of Maroa and Illinois Highway 51 North. It was sometime past three o’clock in the afternoon, as we were near the intersection of Washington Street Road and Greenswitch Road, just where there’s a junction tower of high voltage lines, where two sets of north-south lines and one set of east-west lines cross. The temperature was in the mid 70’s so we had the windows down and the radio playing, but not very loud.

It was at this moment that I noticed what at first looked like a cirrus cloud--it was a very bright white "cigar”" shape, tapering in a very shallow curve from the ends to the middle, the same shape top and bottom, like a discus viewed edge-on. It was approximately 200 feet above the ground, directly above a farmstead on the left side of the road, about a ¾ of a mile ahead.

The shape was noticeably larger across than the farmstead, which consisted of a house, some trees, a couple of equipment barns and large round grain bin. This would make the size of the object between 100 and 200 yards across, and about 30 to 40 feet thick in the middle, top to bottom. Immediately, I realized that it couldn’t be a cloud, because it was far too low for a cirrus cloud, and there were no other clouds visible in the sky. Also, it appeared to be brighter white than a cloud should be. It appeared to be shining with it’s own bright white light. In describing it to people, I have sometimes said that it looked as if the sky were a light blue sheet, and someone had cut a horizontal gash in it with a knife, and sunlight was shining through from behind.

It was so bright, I immediately thought it might be a glare on the windshield, so I moved my head from side to side, and forward and back, to see if the “glare” moved respectively with me. It did not. It just appeared to hang motionless above the farm house. At this point, I’d been watching it for all of about ten seconds, and I was starting to wrap my brain around it. I realized that I was looking at a very large luminous solid object floating in the air above a farmhouse. I felt adrenaline kick-in hard, and I couldn’t take my eyes off it… I didn’t even dare blink.

Then I began to be afraid, because we were essentially heading right towards it at 50 miles an hour! I could hear no sound from it, but with the windows down and the radio on, I can’t say conclusively that it was silent. My mind was racing, as I could hardly believe my eyes. I didn’t know whether Dan had noticed it, and I had just thought about telling him to stop the car, when the object moved. It didn’t seem to accelerate. One split second, it was absolutely stationary, and the next split second, it was moving at incredible speed, toward us, parallel to the road. It covered the half mile or so between the farmhouse and the car in less than two seconds, and passed above the car. Though it moved very fast, I could tell with absolute certainty that it was a circular disc. It appeared simply luminous white, with no discernable surface features at all. I lost sight of it as it passed above the car at an altitude of about 200 feet. I turned around to see if I could spot it out the rear window, but I couldn’t see it. As I turned back to the front, I caught sight of Dan (a very religious Christian, incidentally.) He had turned white as a bed sheet. It was so striking that for a moment, I just sat staring at him as he gazed ahead, eyes transfixed on the road. Slowly, he turned to look at me. As his eyes met mine, he snapped his head to the front again. I could tell he was breathing hard, and his heart was racing.

I asked him, "Dan, did you see that?" "That had to be a glare on the windshield," he said.

"That was no glare on the windshield, and you know it!" I said. He refused to acknowledge what he’d seen, or describe it for me. He was in an almost catatonic state of denial. But when I described what I saw, and why I was sure it wasn’t a glare on the windshield, he didn’t contradict my description. He simply refused to accept that what he’d seen was real.

The entire duration of the sighting was less than thirty seconds.

I was very agitated and frightened for hours afterward, and I had trouble sleeping for weeks thereafter. As long as I live, I will never forget the sight of that huge disc above the farmhouse. I was skeptically curious about UFO phenomena before then, but ever since, I have taken reports of such sightings much more seriously.


((NUFORC Note: Source of report indicates that the date of the incident is approximate. PD))