- Location: Girard, Ohio near Youngstown [Trumbull County]
Date: Tuesday, September 19, 2000 - 12:15 a.m.
- A Mr. Rodney Happney of Youngstown, Ohio reported sighting
a UFO from his location in Girard, Ohio [Trumbull County] on September
19, 2000. Happney, who was interviewed by telephone on Thursday evening,
September 28, 2000, was formerly in the military and served for two years
in the 82nd Airborne Infantry as a paratrooper. Happney informs that he
is very familiar with many types of aircraft and cannot explain what he
witnessed on September 19, and agreed to have his name published in this
- While driving his 1996 Chevy Lumina north on Salt Springs
Road between 12:10 and 12:15 p.m., Happney caught a glimpse of something
in the sky while waiting at a traffic light. "I just saw these things
from the corner of my eye," he said.
- The next thing that caught Happney's attention was a
crowd of people standing in the parking lot of a Sheetz Convenience store
and gas station. "This crowd of people were all standing around looking
up and I realized they were looking at the same thing I was looking at,
so I decided to pull in and stop."
- Happney parked his car in the parking lot of the Sheetz
store, which is a service station located on a heavily traveled quarter
off of Interstate 80 at the Salt Springs Road exit. Also at this exit are
3-truck stops and a British Petroleum [BP] service station.
- Happney estimated there were 20 to 30-people standing
around looking into the sky as he pulled in to the Sheetz parking lot.
They were mostly motorists who had also noticed the suspected UFOs, he
- The objects, which were described as roundish star-like
lights, in the daytime sky, seemed 'pretty high' yet below the thin cloud
- Happney observed a total of 6-independent objects that
were not attached to any larger object. Some of the objects would shoot
straight up, above the clouds while others would seem to roll around and
reflect sunlight. They would perform quick "bee-like" maneuvers
and then assume a formation in what appeared from his vantage point to
be a "straight line."
- "Two of these objects from the rear of the straight-line
formation would remain stationary while the rest of these things just fell,
suddenly," Happney recalled. "They seemed to be flying or buzzing
around real high, but there was no sound at all that I could hear."
- The objects continued to scatter about before they made
a rapid departure to the east. Happney informed that he had never seen
anything pull away at the speed these objects traveled. "Nothing could
compare to how fast things things were going," he said.
- Rodney Happney declares that these objects were nothing
that could be addressed with a satisfactory explanation, and was absolutely
certain they were no type of aircraft or military jets in practice or mock
- The crowd of spectators were pretty worked up, about
the strange goings-on in the sky above them. "All these people were
as amazed as I was," Happney informed. "Someone jokingly said
it could be a UFO, but whatever it was, it shouldn't have been there. I've
never seen anything like this before."
- After the objects departed from sight, Happney reports
that a military plane over flew the area. "No more than 15 or 20-seconds
after these things pulled away, a military plane flew over to the south."
He informs that the camouflaged C-5 'Galaxy' transport aircraft flew at
an estimated 2-mile elevation. Happney also advised that he is familiar
with these planes and knows they frequent the area.
- After the sighting, Happney was excited about the occurrence
and drove on to the Eastwood Mall in Niles, Ohio where he then called 9-1-1
from a Super K-Mart store. He asked the 9-1-1 dispatcher if others had
called about a UFO sighting, but the receptionist said she did not know.
His call was referred to the Youngstown Airport where he was then transferred
to the control tower. The tower operator [estimated to be 10-miles from
the observation location] informed that nothing was seen at the time in
question. Happney was advised by the tower operator to contact the National
UFO Reporting Center with his claim.
- Happney then contacted a local television news-station,
Channel 33 in Youngstown, Ohio. A male receptionist at the news station
informed him that the space shuttle was landing that day, and what was
seen near I-80 could have been 'heat shielding,' coming off of the shuttle
as it flew overhead.
- The weather conditions at the time were blue skies with
light, high clouds. The objects did not appear in the direction of the
sun from the witness perspective, but did reflect sunlight.
- The claimant was interviewed for about 15-minutes and
this researcher views him as a cogent and astute witness. He claims one
previous sighting that he cannot readily identify; this one from 1984 [while
fishing with a friend near Route 11, he observed an object that had a green,
blue and red light that hovered for about 1-minute].
- Verifiable facts refute the dismissive speculation offered
by the employee of a Youngstown, Ohio television station to explain the
alleged UFO sighting. The Space Shuttle Atlantis returned to Cape Canaveral,
Florida in the early evening on Wednesday, September 20, 2000, ending a
12-day mission to stock the International Space Station with supplies.
This time frame simply would not have had its re-entry course into the
atmosphere over northeastern Ohio on Tuesday, September 19 at 12:15 p.m.
- Sheetz Incorporated was contacted by telephone on Friday
morning, September 29, 2000 at 9:15 a.m. [2721 Salt Springs RD, Girard,
OH 44420-3148 - phone: 330-530-2375], and an employee was asked if they
had knowledge of or any information to support the claim of a UFO sighting
outside of their station on Tuesday, September 19. The employee did not
know anything about such a report and checked with other workers at the
station who also knew nothing of any incident involving a crowd of people
looking into the sky from their parking lot.
- This report was submitted to Peter Davenport of the National
UFO Reporting Center [NUFORC], and was made available courtesy of his advisement.
Davenport also informs of a second UFO sighting reported to NUFORC on the
same date from a woman who works in medical research. This claimant informs
of a UFO sighting near Ravenna, Ohio [Portage County] on Tuesday, September
19, 2000 at around 8:00 p.m. The NUFORC caller told of seeing a cluster
of 5 or 6 "boomerang shaped objects in unwavering formation"
streak overhead. The objects were visible to the witness for an estimated
5 or 6-seconds.
- In an effort to acquire more information on this report,
the Ravenna, Ohio police department was contacted [330-296-6486] on September
21, 2000 and Dispatcher Gillum [sp?] handled the inquiry. The female dispatcher,
who was professional in her approach and helpful with researching this
report, said not to have been on duty during the evening in question, but
consulted momentarily with her partner who worked on Tuesday evening from
4:00 p.m. to midnight. This dispatcher informed that there were no incoming
calls to their department reporting a UFO sighting.
- Ravenna, Ohio is due east of Girard by about 26.5-miles.
Girard is slightly north of Youngstown. The region has a well documented
history of UFO sightings dating back to April 17, 1966, when sheriff,s
deputies Dale Spaur and Wilber L. Neff pursued a low-flying UFO from Portage
County into Pennsylvania. On December 14, 1994, numerous civilians in Trumbull
County reported a low-flying UFO to police authorities who pursued the
object for a lengthy duration. Liberty Township police officer Tobe Melero
said that his patrol cruiser was shut down, by the brilliant, soundless
light. For details of these reports, see: http://home.fuse.net/ufo/Trumbull_Index.htm
- More recently, a midnight encounter with a UFO along
Route 11 between East Liverpool and Ashtabula, Ohio on Saturday night,
July 22 was reported to the Ashtabula County State Highway Patrol office.
Three motorists were alarmed by numerous red lights that paced their car.
For details of this report, see: http://home.fuse.net/ufo/Ashtabula2.html
- Filed, September 29, 2000 Kenny Young -- UFO Research
Site Served by TheHostPros