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UFO Case Report:

Flying 'ball of fire' seen by 3 children camping in backyard in Redwood Valley, CA

Date: June 19, 1985
Location: Redwood Valley, California, United States

Three children were camping in their Redwood Valley backyard when they heard a "whoosh" and saw a bright light. The flying "ball of fire" made three circles above their yard. Debbie, 11, said the object was bigger than a beach ball. The object began to get smaller and increase its speed until it disappeared in the southwest.

Brother and sister Jessica and Shawn White, listen as their friend Debbie Crumrlne describes a flying "ball of fire" that circled the White's yard while the three kids were camping out with sleeping bags and lawn chairs. (source: Bev Reeves, Ukiah Daily Journal)

Classification & Features

Type of Case/Report: PressReport
Hynek Classification: CE1
Shape of Object(s): Round
# of Witnesses: Multiple
Special Features/Characteristics: Children, Sound, Witness Photo

Full Report / Article

Source: Ukiah Daily Journal (Ukiah, CA), June 20, 1985

"UFO startles camping kids"

By MISSY CHESSHER Journal staff writer
Ukiah Daily Journal

When three youngsters camping in their Redwood Valley backyard Tuesday night heard a "whoosh" and saw a bright light, they at first thought it was a jet and then a fireball. Now, they don't know what it was.

"So when do jets grow larger and larger?" asked ll-year-old Debbie Crumrine to her camping companion, 8-year-old Jessica White, who suggested the noise and light about 1 a.m. could be a jet.

Shawn White, Jessica's ll-year-old brother, thought the noise was traffic until the bright light made him curious. "I thought they were shining the flashlight in my face," Shawn said.

"It just appeared from thin air," Debbie said. She said the flying object came from the south and was traveling north. The object then paused below the treetops in their neighbor's yard "just like it had a mind of its own," she said.

Debbie said the object was bigger than a beach ball. She said the object was red on the outside and blueish-green on the inside - "Like the color of fire."

When the object paused, she said the middle stopped while the outside continued turning.

"The thing that scared me the most was when it paused," Debbie said. "She was crying, and I thought I was going to faint," Jessica said.

After the object paused, Debbie said it continued traveling on its path and then returned and made three circles above their yard.

The girls had seen enough. They covered their heads with their sleeping bags, but Shawn continued to watch.

Shawn said after the object had circled their yard, it began to get smaller and increase its speed until it disappeared in the southwest. "It went from a big rock, to a Softball, to a star farwawy,"hesaid.

He said the object had a muffled sound like a jet and a streak of fire behind it. "It was so big; it was so bright," Shawn said. "I thought I was going to get burned up."

Debbie said it was a cool night but the air seemed warmer while the object circled in the sky. She said the incident lasted about two or three minutes.

After the object disappeared, all three children spent the rest of the night on the floor in the house. Debbie said she never wanted to spend the night outside again. But Jessica and Shawn both said they would like to see the object again.

"I wished they had beamed me up," Shawn said.

Debbie was anxious to see their story in the paper because she assumed other people would report the incident too. "I know you don't believe me," Debbie told her mother, "But just wait till you see the paper tomorrow."

Spokespersons at the Ukiah Airport, Federal Aviation Administration, and Mendocino County Sheriff Department each said nothing similar to the incident had been reported to their agencies.

Robert Gribble, a staff member of the UFO Reporting Center in Seattle, said the center had not received any reports from the Redwood Valley area. "It's not a real common thing, but we have gotten reports similar to this in the past," he said.

Debbie and Shawn attend Redwood Valley School, and Jessica will attend the school this fall.

Virgina Crumrine, Debbie's mother, said, "My daughter's not prone to makin' things up."

Case ID: 944 edit: 944

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