On This Day: June 24th

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On June 24th 1947 Kenneth Arnold made the first widely reported sighting of a UFO, the sigthing occurred near Mt.Rainier, Washington.Kenneth Arnold was a private pilot flying from Chehalis, Washington to Yakima, Washington in a CallAir A-2 on a business trip. He made a brief detour after learning of a $5,000 reward for the discovery of a U.S. Marine Corps C-46 transport airplane that had crashed near Mt. Rainier. After 3:00pm he gave up his search and started heading back towards Yakima. Arnold claimed that he saw a string of nine, shiny unidentified flying objects flying past Mount Rainier at speeds that Arnold estimated at a minimum of 1,200 miles an hour (1,932 km/hr).

This was the first post-War sighting in the United States that garnered nationwide news coverage and is credited with being the first of the modern era of UFO sightings, including numerous reported sightings over the next two to three weeks. Arnold’s description of the objects also led to the press quickly coining the terms flying saucer and flying disc as popular descriptive terms for UFOs.

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