After two years of searching the skies over Gulf Breeze and printing scores of UFO sightings — Duane and Dari Cook — alas, witnessed a disk shaped UFO hover and dart for 20 minutes below the dense cloud layer on Monday Jan 8. Likewise, Suddy Pollak never gave up his hope to finally see the illusive Gulf Breeze UFO and he too was rewarded on that Monday night with a sighting complete with a red "power ring" and the disk shaped superstructure.
Ed Walters reports, "On Monday evening at 6:28, Frances and I were walking along Fairpoint near the Methodist Church. We noticed the red glowing object beyond the Church in the direction of Russ Dr. We ran back home, phoned in the sighting to MUFON agents, called Duane Cook and Buddy Pollak and then returned with my camera. Duane and Dari Cook and Chip Holston arrived as I set up my 35 mm (with 400mm lens) on a tripod. Clear to the naked eye was a large black disk with a throbing red bottom circle. The UFO hovered below the clouds in silent flight. Within a few minutes Brenda and Buddy Pollak arrived. I continued to watch through the 400mm lens when suddenly a circle of small lights was visible around the black disk. I hit the shutter and said, "Hey! Look! I see portholes! Chip Holston aimed to camera and also saw the portholes. He took the next photo. A few minutes later the red glow disappeared from the underside of the black disk but the disk remained with its distinct outline blocking the clouds beyond. At about 7:04 the disk ascended into the clouds and out of sight.
Only moments after the disk departed, two large helicopters swept directly over the area, and again later another helicopter hovered near the Chruch with its floodlight searching the area. It would seem that our military was looking for the flying disk that we captured on film.
As an interesting note: The following mording "Good Morning America" reported hundreds of sightings being called in from across North Florida, Alabama and Georgia.
What follows is every body else's version of what they saw Monday evening in the sky of the Gulf Breeze United Methodist Church.
It was about 6:30 and I'd just got ten out of the shower when my mom called me to come see something outside. When I looked up there was a red object with a glowing bottom that seemed to be floating high in the sky. I ran back into the house to get binoculars but they didn't help much. It was still fuzzy and I couldn't keep the binoculars steady. I ran upstairs and tried to get a better view from there. When I caught sight of the object again, it was no longer red, but black. Then it disappeared.
When Ed and I first saw the light it was bright red and easy to find at a sharp angle overhead. I had to tilt my head almost straight back to see it. By the time Ed had left with the camera and our daughter Laura and I went outside, the light seemed dimmer but was still clearly visible.
During the time Laura and I watched the light through the binoculars, it dimmed even more so that it was difficult to find again if you looked away from it. Also occasionally clouds would cover it for a few seconds.
I stayed at the house with Laura until the object disappeared then I walked over to the church where Ed and the others had gathered. We waited a while to see if the light would reappear but didn't see it again. There was, however, what seemed to be an inordinate amount of helipcopter traffic in the area shortly after the sighting.
Last night (Monday), as I was cleaning up the kitchen after dinner, Buddy called me to "get the camera and came quick!" Ed Walters had called to say that he and Frances had seen something strange hovering in the vicinity of the Methodist Church, and if we came right away, we might get to see it too.
Immediately, I grabbed the camera bag and a coat and off we headed. In Buddy's car, I took the camera out of the bag and checked the settings. I noticed that the time on the data bank said 6:39 p.m. as we were pulling out of our driveway.
We drove straight up to the church, where we saw Dari and Duane Cook, Chip Holston, Ed and Frances looking skyward and pointing. I saw a red light darting about changing directions rapidly and erratically, then hovering at times, and moving very fast at times. The light did not have sharply defined edges like a normal aircraft light would; it was more like a fuzzy glow, bright enough to be clearly visible, but dim enough to be missed if you weren't looking for it.
There was a thick cloud cover at the time, and the object we were watching was below the clouds, but I couldn't guess how high it was. It made no sound at all (Later in the evening, we saw both airplanes and helicopters flying about, and the noise their engines could be heard from great distances, because it was a very still night).
While the red was still visible, I tried to photograph it but I found it impossible to get it into view because it was darting about so rapidly that I would lose it (I was using a 100-300mm zoom lens).
After a few minutes, the red disappeared, but the object was still visible as a round black dot, about 1/4" in diameter, moving about against the backdrop of the clouds. It was still below the clouds at first, but either it began to ascent, or the clouds became lower, because after a few minutes there began to be periods when it would be obscured by the clouds an then reappear. It continued to move rapidly, then hover, then move and change directions very abruptly. Once it even appeared to come slightly lower for a short time. Eventually it disappeared in a cloud and never reappeared. I would estime that the total time it was visible to me, in the red and black stages combined, was 15-20 minutes.
While it was hovering in the "black dot" state, I tried to photograph it, but my camera malfunctioned, it's never done that before it's working perfectly today.
I have tried very hard to find some logical explanation for what we saw. It definitely was not a plane or helicopter. A weather balloon or a kite—do they have lights, or move so fast, or change directions so abruptly? I think not I know it was not a cloud of a bird or a blimp. If you have any other possible explanation, I'd love to hear it!
About a quarter to seven Monday evening, Chip and I were watching TV and waiting for Dari to get dressed for the Quarterback Club banquet. The phone rang. Chip answered it and offered it to me. It was Ed Walters. Ed said, "There"s a big red light in the sky over the Methodist Church. Come on down if you want to see it, and bring your camera."
I said, "We'll be right there," and hung up.
I told Chip what Ed had said and asked if he wanted to go.
He said, "Sure," and started for the car.
I hollered the same message to Dari upstairs and she said she's be right down.
When we reached the church, Ed was there with his 35mm camera with a 400mm lens on a tripod. He had the camera aimed almost straight up and was pointing in the same direction.
We all jumped out of the car and peered into the dark overcast sky. At first, we couldn't see anything, and Ed was about to panic because he was looking right at it.
Turned out, it was just a matter of waiting for our eyes to adjust to the night sky. Chip's eyes adapted first and he pointed at the now faint red light standing for a minute in the direction Chip was pointing. I could see a steady red right in the middle of a small black area high in the clouds. Then I heard Dari say, "I see it!" with such excitement in her voice I knew she was seeing it too.
At this point, I wasn't too impressed. A single unfamiliar light in the sky never did constitute a printable UFO sighting to me. And I certainly was not about to say I'd seen one myself based on what I was looking at now.
About this time, Brenda and Buddy Pollak drove up and got out to look also. Ed had called them too in an effort to gather as many witnesses as he could.
There was a lot of excited chatter about whether it was moving or not. I couldn't say for sure because each time I blinked, I lost it for a few seconds and had to relocate it against the fuzzy background of clouds.
Then sunndenly, it was gone, or at least it seemed so to me.
I don't know who among us first saw it again and directed our attention a little lower in the sky. But this time, it didn't have any lights and it seemed to have a definite oblong or circular shape. It was either black or very dark grey.
I heard Chip in the background say he was looking at it through Ed's 400mm lens and could see portholes. I thought to myself "That"s just wishful thinking." Then Ed said he could see the portholes too.
Chip asked Ed if he could take a picture to which Ed, of course, replied in the affirmative. I heard the shutter click and thought to myself "Too bad it's so dark. That picture doesn't stand much of a chance of coming out, even if they push process it the way we do to our night football game film."
Ed said he was going back home (next door) for his video camera and asked me to keep aneye on his 35mm. He had it aimed at the object now clearly visible to all of us. I looked through the camera to see what it would look like on film. It was too dark to see anything, so I gave it up and went back to staring at the small dark circle in the sky with my rapidly tiring bare eyes.
Brenda and Buddy were beside me talking about how much closer it seemed to be than earlier when it had the red light.
Then suddenly, I realized I couldn't see it anymore. I don't know whether it went behind a cloud or what happened to it. I kept looking where it had been in case it was just a momentary lapse in concentration. But no luck.
Nobody else could see it anymore either in spite of the crowd that had gathered to see what everybody was looking at.
About that time Chip and Dari, remembered we were now late for the Quarterback Club banquet, so we left the crowd still looking up in wonder at what we had seen.
Dari was ecstatic at having finally seen the UFO and told everybody she saw about it. I wasn't so sure. I just wished it had come closer so I too could have seen the portholes.
We arrived around 6:40 on Russ Dr, next to the Methodist Church; Ed was setting up his camera.
We looked up at the dark sky and could not see anything.
I asked if it was gone, thinking we probably missed it.
Ed looked shocked that we couldn't see it and pointed up to the sky.
Finally our eyes adjusted and we could see a red object with a bright red light or ball at the bottom - it looked like it was a black background with a red haze over it.
It moved around in a zigzag pattern and if you blinked you had to (...)
It was ragged around the top and seemed oblong and was dark red, almost burgundy, not as bright and clear as the red light over the water tower on Fairpoint.
Brenda and Buddy Pollak arrived and we pointed to the object. Brenda looked at it and through her camera. We were excited. Buddy was finally getting to see "something", also.
The object seemed to be tilting around slowly - finally all the red was gone and it was totally black. it was easier to see now that it was black.
About 6:50 we had to leave to go (...)
When we arrived at the Church Monday night, we saw Ed fixing his tripod and camera.
Ed said, "Do you see it? It's up there."
We looked and we couldn't see it until our eyes focused in because of the clouds.
After a few seconds we could see a red light on bottom and an egg-shaped black outline about it.
We watched for about 15 minutes. I looked through the camera and could see the red light and white portholes. I asked Ed if I could take a picture and he said, "Shoot!". After a few minutes you (...) black outline.
I would estimate it to be 20 feet wide and 40 feet tall.
Then we had to leave and pick up Gretchen to go to the football banquet.
I was on the beach with my father. hal Holston at Santa Rosa Dunes, visiting Linda Butler. We went outside and saw a big, bright white light over Shoreline Park at tree level. We saw 6 helicopters coming towards it - as soon as a helicopter got over it - it blinked off.
We counted over 10 helicopters (...)