Strange lights in the sky changed Lynne Kitei's life forever. Over a two-year period, Kitei, the chief clinical consultant at the Vital Imaging and Wellness Center at the Arizona Heart Institute, saw strange lights near her Paradise Valley home three times.
Jan B. Jacobson
Special for The Republic
Mar. 19, 2004 12:00 AM
Strange lights in the sky changed Lynne Kitei's life forever.
Over a two-year period, Kitei, the chief clinical consultant at the Vital Imaging and Wellness Center at the Arizona Heart Institute, saw strange lights near her Paradise Valley home three times.
The first was in February 1995, when "three heavenly lights" appeared in midair at what she estimated was about 100 yards from her home. Then she saw them again on Jan. 22, 1997, and on March 13, 1997. Kitei was looking through her bedroom window when she saw what she describes as orbs in a triangular formation passing over Phoenix.
Kitei was one of thousands of witnesses to observe the March 13 sighting, which later became known as "the Phoenix lights" She took photographs and video of the lights, and her footage aired on local television stations, the Discovery Channel and major news networks. She appeared on radio and other talk shows with other witnesses but did so under the name Dr. Lynne or Dr. X, concealing her identity because she said she wanted to preserve her privacy and credibility as a doctor.
A Valley teenager looking through a telescope that March 1997 evening said it looked like a formation of planes, perhaps vintage ones headed to an air show in southern Arizona. The Arizona Air National Guard said the other lights were flares from a night training exercise.
Whatever they were, Kitei she couldn't forget it. So for seven years, she did her homework, compiling information about unidentified flying objects, or UFOs. She said she wanted to be a "messenger" to educate the public about what she considers a vital issue.
"It's time to get this data out in the open so that a journey to a new reality will begin" she said. "As with all unexplained phenomena, the message is 'Wake up' before we destroy our world. Let the data speak for itself. Once readers read my book, they can make their own conclusions as to what it was and what it all means"
She will promote her book, The Phoenix Lights, at 7 tonight at the Borders bookstore at the Biltmore Fashion Park. She will give a short lecture and video presentation and sign copies. More signings are scheduled through the Valley into late April.
Kitei said she initially didn't want to come forward but decided she couldn't let her research just sit in a drawer.
Valley resident and author Paul Perry wrote the foreword to the book and said Kitei worked with scientists, engineers, air-traffic controllers, university professors and photo analysis experts to try to explain what she and many others had seen.
But don't look for clear-cut answers in her book. Kitei doesn't really say what she believes the phenomena to be.