Two Air Force jet pilots reported today they chased a mysterious, round flying object -traveling at a speed they estimated at 900 miles an hour--for 30 miles and couldn't catch it.
Lt. Wilbert S. Rogers said at Mitchel Field that he and Capt. Edward Ballard sighted the object yesterday over Sandy Hook, N.J., while they were on a routine flight in a T-33 jet training plane.
"I don't know if it was a flying saucer, but it sure was something I've never seen before," Rogers, pilot of the plane, said. "We couldn't have caught it in an F-86."
Rogers described the object as white or silver-colored and said it was about the size of a fighter plane.
Rogers and Ballard, on a flight from Dover Air Base in New Jersey, said when they sighted the object they were traveling at 450 miles and hour at 20,000 feet.
"I pointed it out to Capt. Ballard," Rogers said, "who suggested we try to follow it, but we soon found it was no use. It was going too fast."
The object moved in an arc from Sandy Hook to Red Bank and then headed out to sea at Asbury Par, Rogers said. He estimated it traveled the 30-mile course in two minutes, or at a speed of 900 miles an hour.
The Air Force and Navy have officially said that flying saucers reported previously had been nothing more than weather balloons.
"This couldn't have been a balloon," Rogers said, "because it was descending and no balloon goes that fast."
He said they got as close as 8,000 feet from the object, which kept a constant speed and "didn't appear to be running away."
Pilots at Mitchel listened to Rogers' story with serious
interest. One, who refused to allow his name to be use, said,
"When you hear a reliable pilot tell an honest story like that, it
makes you wonder."