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January 16, 2008

Did those Texans really see a UFO?

About a dozen residents in Stephenville, Texas claim they saw a fast, silent UFO flying through their normally starry skies.

Several residents including a pilot, the county constable and many business owners swear they saw a mile-wide flying aircraft that was larger, quieter, faster and lower to the ground than an airplane.

"People wonder what in the world it is because this is the Bible Belt, and everyone is afraid it's the end of times," said Steve Allen, a freight company owner and pilot who said the object he saw last week was a mile long and half a mile wide. "It was positively, absolutely nothing from these parts."

Federal officials claim there must be an explanation, but residents say the object's lights changed configuration, unlike those of a plane. People in several towns who reported seeing it over several weeks have offered similar descriptions of the object. Others claim the large UFO was being chased by fighter jets.

Maj. Karl Lewis, a spokesman for the 301st Fighter Wing at the Joint Reserve Base Naval Air Station in Fort Worth, said no F-16s or other aircraft from his base were in the area the night of Jan. 8, when most people reported the sighting.

Lewis says the object may have been an illusion caused by two commercial airplanes. Lights from the aircraft would seem unusually bright and may appear orange from the setting sun.

"I'm 90 percent sure this was an airliner," Lewis said. "With the sun's angle, it can play tricks on you."

Locals still believe they saw a UFO. One man has offered a reward for a photograph or videotape of the mysterious object.

I'll have to see it to believe it!

In this photo: Standing near the area where he saw a large silent object in the sky, Ricky Sorrells talks about the sighting, Monday, Jan.14, 2008 in Dublin, Texas.

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