Date: Sun, 11 Apr 2004 12:01:16 -0400
From: "T. F. Kirk" <>
To: "Francis Ridge" <>
Subject: Reply --  Correction to -- ""

I may not have been clear in my first note to you.  I am the Thomas Kirk in the Sebago news item.

As for any additional information regarding the sighting ...

The date of the sighting was 5 November 1957.  The USCGC Sebago was ordered to proceed to NAS Pensacola instead of going to its homeport, Mobile, AL. There was a Navy de-briefing at NAS Pensacola the day the ship docked.  The Naval officers involved with the de-briefing were not all from NAS Pensacola.  I think there were some from Washington, DC, although they were not identified as such.  There were no Air Force people at the debriefing in which I took part.

In retrospect, I don't recall any restriction on commenting about the sighting at the time. In fact, Ens. Wayne Shockley and I were temporarily <>assigned to the Third USCG District in New York to appear on the Dave Garroway's "Today Show" (NBC) for a very brief (about 4 minutes) interview on national TV.

I don't know what it was that we saw and no one at the time was able to explain it.  Initially we had radar contact (no human error there) and then
there was a combination of visual and radar contacts.

Now that decades have past and more information is available more pieces of the puzzle can be put together. I came across the following web site: 

The Navy's Regulus missile had been operational in the fleet since 1955. It wasdeployed on submarines. Enhancements were continually made to the Regulus and the vessels that carried it.  I don't know if the Navy was conducting development tests on something like the Regulus in 1957.  But if they were, it seems to me that having a UFO reported during a test would be a better than having a report of a missile firing.   What do you think?
<>For your file I am enclosing a photo of the people involved.

And the web site for a picture of the USCGC Sebago is at

<>Again, I can honestly say that I don't know what it was that we witnessed on November 5, 1957.

Thomas F. Kirk
Roswell, GA

-----Original Message-----
From: Francis Ridge
Sent: Sunday, April 11, 2004 11:25 AM
To: T. F. Kirk
Subject: Re: Correction to -- cutter2.htm
Hi again, Tom,
Say, in regard to your email concerning the Sebago case, one of my
colleagues brought up a good question. Maybe you can help:

"Did you get Mr. Kirk to give you any further info on the case?  During the
last trip I talked to Bill Pitts, he had a New Orleans newspaper clipping
from Dewey Fournet which showed all the witnesses in a photograph.  The
article on the incident was missing.  The New Orleans Items is available at
many libraries but this is from the News which was apparently an afternoon
newspaper.  It would be great to get a complete article, perhaps the
newspaper interviewed the crewmen in addition to taking their picture."

Do you have anything at all on this or other information? I would sure
appreciate it.

Francis Ridge
NICAP Site Coordinator

Date: Tue, 08 May 2007 09:08:12 -0400
From: TF Kirk <>
Subject: RE: Reply --  Correction to --
To: 'Francis Ridge' <>

Thanks for letting know about the up-dated web page. 

There are some "hairs out of place" (minor errors). If you want to make corrections I’ve made them in the copy below.

In addition, radarman James Moore (from
Dallas, TX) was also a witness to the event. He wasn’t mentioned in the news dispatches You’ll find a photo of the witnesses attached. I am also attaching a photo of the USCGC Sebago WPG 42 in the USCG paint scheme used in 1957.  <>

By the way, I no longer feel the sighting was a UFO. I now believe it to be a sighting of a test firing of a Regulus missile.

Go to:   and

There was an active submarine base at Key West in 1957. It is likely that the test and training area for the sub base was the Gulf of Mexico.  Of course, I could be wrong; and, the sighting was a view into the sub-surface base of a UFO colony ( <GRIN>,  I think not).  <>

TF Kirk

Coast Guard Cutter "Sebago" RV Case
November 5, 1957
Gulf of Mexico

 Just after 5:00 a.m. the U. S. Coast Guard Cutter Sebago was about 200 miles south of the Mississippi delta. At 5:10 AM the bridge shipboard in the combat information center radar suddenly showed an unidentified target at 246 degrees true, moving N to S., range 12,000 yards (almost 7 miles). On duty were Ensign Wayne Schotley Shockley, deck officer, Lt. (j.g.) LTJG Donald Schaefer, first class quartermaster Kenneth Smith, radarman James Moore, and radioman radarman Thomas Kirk.

Interviewed in New Orleans, Ensign Schotley Shockley was asked how good the radar target was.

Schotley Shockley: "The ship's combat information center confirmed the sighting. At that point it was reported falling astern rapidly. It was a good pip [target]. It was a very strong contact, considered good." 

Cmdr. James N. Schrader, USCG, spokesman in New Orleans, said that at one point "in two minutes it went 33 miles straight away from the ship." (About 1020 mph.)

At 5:14 contact was lost.

5:16 contact was regained, object about 22 miles north.

5:18 Object faded off radar screen, range about 55 miles. 

At 5:20 contact regained, object appeared stationary, seven miles due north.

About this time, A/lC William J. Mey, USAF, an Electronics technician at Keesler AFB, Mississippi (about 320 miles to the north on the Gulf Coast) spotted an elliptical UFO. In his signed report to NICAP, A/lC Mey gives the time as approximately 5:20 a.m. Looking south, he saw the UFO approach on a northerly course at about the speed of a propeller airliner, then accelerate rapidly and disappear into some clouds.

This suggests that more than one UFO may have been operating in the area, and that the Sebago's radar may have tracked more than one of them. A/1C Mey's report is fairly consistent with the 5:18 radar report of the UFO headed north at over 1000 mph. If Mey actually saw the UFO at 5:28, it would have averaged about 1590 mph., from the time it faded from the Sebago's radar screen. If he saw it precisely at 5:20 a.m., it would have had to accelerate to nearly 8000 mph. to cover the distance in that time).

At 5:21 the Sebago regained radar contact, and also saw the UFO visually for 3-5 seconds as a brilliant white object with no distinguishable shape. It was at a bearing of 270 degrees true (west), elevation about 31 degrees, moving horizontally from south to north. (A navigator obtained the elevation by noting a star at the same angle and taking a sextant reading of it). The UFO finally entered a cloudbank and disappeared.

At 5:37 the cutter reported its last radar contact with the object, about 175 miles to the north, traveling about 660 mph.

NICAP UFO Evidence, 86