The first edition of Night Siege reported UFO sightings in the Hudson Valley only to the year 1986. The sightings…continued well into the mid-1990s, but in far fewer numbers since early 1985. Unlike the astonishing incidents that occurred in 1983 and 1984, the UFO rarely made low-altitude passes over heavily populated areas and was no longer seen by thousands over a period of a few hours. However, the character of the incidents changed remarkably in that the encounters were much closer than most of those previously reported.
Here is a sampling of some of the more significant sightings [in] 1986…
1986Although the first edition of Night Siege was devoted to incidents that occurred in New York and Connecticut counties just north of New York City, we knew the UFO was being seen in a much wider area. It wasn't until the late 1980s, however, that we were able to investigate any other sightings because there were so many in our own area.
The UFO was seen quite frequently in the northern part of the Hudson Valley around the towns of Newburgh, Kingston, and Oppressive in New York State. In the Kingston area, we were fortunate to be able to work with Dr. Gary Levine, a college professor and an excellent, dedicated UFO researcher. He spent countless hours investigating reports in his area and generously shared his findings with us. Sadly, Dr. Levine died in a freak car accident in 1995. Much of this chapter is based on his work.
On March 26, at 8:00 P.M., the phones at the Kingston police station started ringing with calls about an object as big as a football field gliding low on a northerly course over the south end of the city. It made no sound and several times made fantastic maneuvers. The local TV station rushed a news crew to the area.
One witness was Charles Fishman, who was outside his house when he looked to the south.
"I saw this solid bar of very bright white lights approaching," Fishman said. "I became very concerned because it looked just like one of those C-5A jets coming from Stewart Air Field, but this thing was so low that I was sure it was going to crash. I called my neighbors and we watched as the lights got closer. I though this was strange since we heard no sound. Surely an object of that size and moving that slow would make a racket and its engines would have to be on high power just to stay in the air.
"As it got closer, we saw that the underside was lit up with rows of red lights in a circle and I could see yellow, green, and blue lights behind the white lights. This was a very large object an there was definitely some type of mass behind it since I could see a silhouette. It then passed over, I would say no more than 2,000 feet, and several of my neighbors said they heard a humming sound, but I didn't. It was so huge and massive that it blocked out the entire sky above us. It was much larger than a C-5A and I would have to say that you could probably put several C-5s inside this thing. There's no doubt in my mind that this was something from another world.
"We saw it for about five minutes, then all of a sudden this thing just flips on its side. Let me explain. When we first saw it the UFO looked like it was a straight line. As it got closer, it looked like a half circle and when it passed overhead the lights were circular in shape, but it looked like the structure was a very dark triangle. As it passed to the north of us and was about forty degrees in elevation, it now looked like a complete circle of lights. The object then flipped on its side and seemed to roll in the sky. It looked just like a Ferris wheel.
"We watched it do this for about several seconds, then all the lights went out. I don't know if it disappeared. I couldn't see it anymore."
Fishman's neighbors gave us similar accounts. Based on information from police reports, newspaper stories, calls to the local TV and radio stations and to UFO investigators, it is estimated that at lease 500 people saw the UFO in the Kingston area that night.
Several Kingston police officers also saw the UFO, but police in the area were told not to make any official statements if they had a sighting. One officer did tell us he got a good look at the object through binoculars and was sure that it wasn't a formation of planes or any type of conventional aircraft.
"I can tell you what it wasn't, but I cannot make any opinions on what I think it was because I never saw anything like it before," he said. "Up to this point, I heard about the sightings and was convinced that it was nothing more than a bunch of guys flying in planes perpetrating a hoax, but now I know this is not so."
The Kingston TV station followed up on the news reports with a week-long special on the Hudson Valley sightings. The response was so great that Phil Imbrogno and Dr. Gary Levine were invited to appear on another special report the following week. Dr. Levine had several still photographs and video footage from that night that had been given to him by witnesses.
The show was so successful that the station aired another hour-long program two weeks later. Phil was asked to return and take part in a debate with a scientist from the University of Albany who was then president of the Society for the Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal. This was an organization composed of skeptics who dispute the existence of UFOS and other paranormal claims. This scientist had never seen the object but was convinced that planes, blimps, and the planet Venus were responsible for the sightings. He wound up accusing Phil and Dr. Hynek of falsifying information and using the media to hype the UFO scare just to sell books.
The UFO continued to be seen in that area and in June it made another dramatic appearance in Newburgh, which is south of Kingston. A sighting with a number of witnesses took place on June 27 over the Hudson River itself.
Motorists were shocked to see a large object approach the Newburgh bridge from the west. Cars began stopping on the bridge, causing several minor accidents. People got out of their vehicles for a better look at something very large drifting overhead with four rows of white, yellow, green, blue, and red lights arranged in a sort of multiple-triangle shape. The UFO passed right over the bridge but the witnesses heard no sound. One man told us the lights lit the top of the bridge. Although the lights appeared to be attached to some type of rigid structure, no detail was seen. The object headed south and was later reported in Dutchess and Putnam Counties in New York.
Excerpted from Night Siege, by J. Allen Hynek, Phillip J. Imbrogno, Bob Pratt