; Phantoms and Monsters: Pulse of the Paranormal

Thursday, December 07, 2023

USO SIGHTINGS at Key West, Florida from Cruise Ship & Coast Guard Cutter

The following USO incidents from Key West, Florida were reported to me. One report was from a cruise ship passenger, and the other came from a member of the US Coast Guard.

"This occurred in Key West, Florida on 2018-08-17 at 01:30 PM. My friend and I returned to our cruise cabin and went on the balcony looking at the water. We noticed a helicopter, then birds. We then saw these white balls of light zig-zagging in the sky, sometimes together in unison, other times separately in different directions. They went straight from the sky into the water and would just reappear back in the sky even though we watched for them to come out. At one point they came together less than 100 feet in front of us side by side, still not moving facing us. We felt they were looking at us. Then together they started slowly moving in a straight line toward us. They came so close, that we ran into the cabin, pulled the curtain, and turned the lights out.

We later found the courage to peep out of the sliding glass door but saw nothing. It was so scary, we were the only people we could see who were on the balcony because it was so late. We thought they would take us, and no one would know what happened to us or would have thought we fell overboard as we were on floor 7. I later looked into how many people went missing on cruise ships and found it has happened many times." H

NOTE: This is not the first USO report at Key West that was sent to me:

Coast Guard Cutter Encounters USOs Off Key West

“It was the summer of 2000 and I was just a non-rate stationed on a 110’ Coast Guard cutter out of Key West, FL. We had enjoyed three days of calm weather and the seas were glassy smooth. Rare nights like this are when smugglers like to make a run and we were sitting on a darkened ship on a known drug route, an awesome fishing spot due to a massive drop-off underneath us. We had our radars set to max, our ears wide open and our mouths clamped shut. Sound carries like crazy out there and sometimes you can hear the engines of a 'go-fast' screaming before radar even picks them up. But tonight was dead. No activity at all.

I was coming onto the bridge for the 0330 watch shift. Our J.O.D. was checking the equipment for a pass-down but when he got to the radar he gave a little “WTF” under his breath. The oncoming O.O.D. came over to see what was up, said the same thing then called our C.O. on the sound-powered phone. We heard him say, “Hey Cap, we have two contacts moving fast coming straight at us about 40 knots out.” So we think we are about to see some action and everyone starts getting amped up when we hear him give the speed. “400 knots and holding steady.” At this point, we think it’s just a radar anomaly or some “running rabbits” radar-type echo. But these two staggered contacts stayed on the scope, and their signal just got stronger. Whatever it was was about the size of a cargo ship moving about 450 mph and wasn’t even leaving a wake. (You can see a wake on the radar, especially on a calm night.) After hearing this the C.O. is on deck in his bathrobe about 30 seconds later just staring at the radar and everyone is just perplexed trying to get a look in over his shoulder. So he sends us all out onto the bridge wing with night vision goggles and has us all looking out for these things. Every few seconds he is counting down the range and right when they get to 8 miles out they simply drop off the radar. Boom. Just gone.

Now both of us non-rates get sent down to the bow of the ship and told to listen for anything. See if we can hear anything or see anything or whatever. So we listen and it’s so quiet that all we can hear is the blood pounding in our ears. Then after not even a minute of vigilance we see something. Two lights underwater moving fast. Coming directly at us. If we had blinked we would have missed them. In just a moment they had passed directly under our bow and were gone. The best description I can give would be like two train lights moving slightly staggered, not too deep under crystal clear water. Maybe 40 or 50 feet down. The leading vessel was slightly silhouetted by the trailing vessel and the brief impression I got of it was like the engine car of a train. Just way larger. It was over so fast I really never got a look so I can’t say much more than that about them. My fellow lookout and I exchanged a shocked look at each other and he asked me if I had just seen it too. We talked excitedly about it for a second and ran back up to report our findings.

After we made it to the bridge and started telling the C.O. what we had seen the Quarter Master shut us up saying they had popped back up on radar. Sure enough, 8 miles out, there they were. Still moving staggered at 400 knots. We watched them disappear off the radar at about 40-plus miles in silence. All of us just held our positions until they passed out of range. Then the old man asked us what we saw. We told him and after a minute of silence, he just said. “Weird...radar glitch it is.” Then sighed and went back to bed. After he wished us a good watch and went below deck the C.O.B. (Most senior Chief Of the Boat) pulled us up to the flying bridge for a talk. He basically told us that there are lots of weird things out here and that this was not the first time he had heard about “underwater oddities” from sailors, but was the first he had ever been a part of. He didn’t say we shouldn’t tell anyone but he made it pretty clear most people wouldn’t believe us if we did. That was it.

The next night was just as calm and we ended up stopping a drug smuggler with nearly a ton of product on board and we all just sort of put the incident behind us and moved on with our normal lives. All I can say after two decades of experience in the military is that in the middle of the ocean on a clear night and with a good set of NVG you can see little zippy things in the sky, just about every night if you have some patience. In my years of sea-time, I’ve seen lots of odd things but that night will always stand out in my memories.” J

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Have you had a sighting or encounter?
Contact me by email or call the hotline at 410-241-5974
Thanks. Lon




Welcome to Phantoms & Monsters Radio. In this episode, I welcome my friend & colleague Tobias Wayland to the show. We will discuss the newly reported Chicago/Lake Michigan Mothman & winged humanoid sightings and any updates to previous reports.

Tobias Wayland is a Fortean investigator investigating the unusual for over a decade. The first several years of his investigative career were spent as a MUFON field investigator and following that he investigated independently before becoming the head writer and editor for The Singular Fortean Society. Tobias is a frequent guest on various podcasts and radio shows, has written several books and contributed articles to periodicals on the paranormal, has appeared on television and in documentaries, and is often invited to speak at paranormal conferences and events. Tobias & Emily Wayland are members of Phantoms & Monsters Fortean Research.
He was featured in the series premiere of Expedition X, and the Small Town Monsters documentaries Terror in the Skies and On the Trail of the Lake Michigan Mothman for his work investigating Mothman sightings around Lake Michigan. He and his wife Emily have been involved with the Lake Michigan Mothman investigation since its advent in the spring of 2017. He published a book chronicling the experience, The Lake Michigan Mothman: High Strangeness in the Midwest. His second and third books about unusual phenomena, Strange Tales of the Impossible and The Singular Fortean Society’s Yuletide Guide to High Strangeness, continue their work in investigating a variety of seemingly impossible events.

In the Singular Fortean Society’s Yuletide Guide to High Strangeness. Tobias and Emily Wayland take you on a journey into the darkest part of the year. Winter has always been a time of magic, monsters, and legendary figures; their stories are told and retold across generations. But what if there was something more? Some authentic human experiences that inspired these stories, so often told around fires built as much to drive back the shadows as to provide warmth.
In this book, the Waylands compare Christmas legends to modern anomalous phenomena to see what similarities exist. From Sheepsquatch to Santa Claus, The Singular Fortean Society's Yuletide Guide to High Strangeness covers a wide variety of reported sightings that might represent a startling truth behind our stories.







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Have you had a sighting or encounter?
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Thanks. Lon

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