Just a little UFO story to brighten your Friday evening (though most of you probably already know this one).
via Mysterious Universe (click through to read the entire piece):
Lieutenant George F. Gorman, a veteran pilot in the North Dakota Air National Guard, has gone down in history as the subject of an amazing close encounter with a still-unidentified flying object. Taking place on the night of October 1st, 1948, Lieutenant Gorman’s encounter was one of the earliest reported pilot testimonies regarding a UFO, and remains a classic case to this day.
Lt. Gorman was a member of the North Dakota Air National Guard and upon returning to Hector airport in Fargo from a cross-country flight with his squadron, he decided to keep his F-51 Mustang in the air to log some night-flight hours. So while the rest of the squadron landed, Gorman stayed aloft, circling the town of Fargo. As he prepared to land, the air traffic control tower at Hector airport advised him that there was another aircraft below him, specifically a Piper Cub. Lt. Gorman acknowledged and saw the plane about 500 feet below him. Soon after, he saw something resembling the tail light of another aircraft quickly pass him on his right side.
Alerting the control tower to the latter presence, the tower radioed back saying there were no other craft in his vicinity except for the Piper Cub. Wanting to investigate further, Lt. Gorman radioed the tower to let them know of his intentions, and pursued the the object. Upon approaching within 1,000 yards of the object, Lt. Gorman estimated that the lighted object was small, about six to eight inches in diameter. What happened next is best described by Lt. Gorman’s own words, found in an excerpt from one case report:
“’It was about six to eight inches in diameter, clear white, and completely round without fuzz at the edges. It was blinking on and off. As I approached, however, the light suddenly became steady and pulled into a sharp left bank. I thought it was making a pass at the tower. I dived after it and brought my manifold pressure up to sixty inches, but I couldn’t catch up with the thing. It started gaining altitude and again made a left bank,’ he said. ‘I put my F-51 into a sharp turn and tried to cut the light off in its turn. By then we were at about 7,000 feet. Suddenly it made a sharp right turn and we headed straight at each other. Just when we were about to collide, I guess I got scared. I went into a dive, and the light passed over my canopy at about 500 feet.’”