Lights over Nogales?In the last couple of weeks, strange lights have been seen in Santa Cruz County's nighttime sky.
By By William Wilczewski
By By William Wilczewski
An anonymous caller first contacted the Nogales International Nov. 8 about a sighting the night before. The caller said he and "a bunch" of others in Wal-Mart's parking lot were awestruck by the yellowish-orange lights they observed.
Horne Ford employee Adan Nido was so awestruck that he invited 15 to 20 friends and co-workers, including Carlos Silva and Tony Griffin, to his Rio Rico house Nov. 15, for a sighting carne asada.
"People think you're crazy at first but after they see them, they change their mind," Nido said, adding that this wasn't the first time he's seen the strange phenomenon.
"I started seeing them last year at the same time of year," he said. "And it always seems to be between 8 and 9 at night."
That is when all known accounts of the local mysterious lights have taken place.
According to Larry Tiffin, manager of the Nogales International Airport, though, the lights may not be such a mystery.
Tiffin said he received a bulletin from the Federal Aviation Authority a couple of weeks ago. It advised him that fighter planes from Fort Huachuca would be doing nighttime maneuvers in the restricted air space (military operations area) between their base and Yuma over the next 30 days.
Nido doesn't quite buy that explanation.
"It's something I can't explain, though," he said, "but it's not maneuvers. It's not a plane. It's something out of this place. Those things are not from here. I'm not sure it's aliens, but it's not from here ... unless the government is designing something new."
But the government and military are always a possibility.
That was the official explanation for the "Phoenix Lights" incident, an optical phenomena that took place in the sky over Arizona and Nevada, and the Mexican state of Sonora on March 13, 1997.
According to Wikipedia, an online encyclopedia: "Lights of varying descriptions were seen by thousands of people between 7:30 and 10:30 p.m., in a space of about 300 miles from the Nevada line, through Phoenix, to the edge of Tucson. There were two distinct events involved in the incident: a triangular formation (which has not been noted in the Nogales sightings) of lights seen to pass over the state, and a series of stationary lights seen in the Phoenix area.
"Although the United States Air Force identified the second group of lights as flares dropped by A-10 Warthog aircraft which were on training exercises at the Barry Goldwater Range at Luke Air Force Base, some who observed the event believe differently. Notable among those who thought they had observed alien aircraft is Arizona governor at the time of the incident, Fife Symington, and many other high ranking military, aviation and government officials."
All reports of the Nogales Lights seem to be in a straight horizontal line except for Griffin's. The Horne Ford owner said they took a "curved shape ... like the outside edge of a flying saucer" and "moved very erratically at high rates of speed."
Griffin, however, wasn't exactly saying that what he saw was a Martian spacecraft, but "the hair stood up on the back of my neck," he said. "No matter what it was, it was pretty cool."
What puzzles him most about the lights is that "there are so many in such a small section of the sky," he said. "That's why I have a hard time believing they are conventional aircraft."
Silva counted seven of the lights that Griffin spoke about at one time on Nov. 15.
"I saw seven bursts of light," he said. "I don't know what it was ... but it wasn't a plane or a helicopter."
"I wonder why nobody talks about it more," Nido added. "It's something really different."
Most accounts describe the lights as white and yellowish-orange that flash and reappear in a different spot of the sky.
Very small and quicker flashes of white "star-like" sparks have also been noted before and after the bigger, yellowish-orange beams.
Interestingly, Nido even mentioned seeing standard aircraft "observing" the lights from a distance on at least one occasion.