Navy service members Gary Voorhis, Jason Turner, P.J. Hughes, Ryan Weigelt and Kevin Day recently sat down with Popular Mechanics to present their side of the story regarding what they witnessed as part of the USS Nimitz carrier group - the force which had an overwhelming amount of alleged UFO sightings in 2004.
Day, who operated an early-warning E-2 Hawkeye aircraft and was in charge of “protecting the airspace around the strike group,” according to Popular Mechanics, said he encountered a group of UFOs in November 2004.
“The reason why I say they’re weird [is] because they were appearing in groups of five to 10 at a time, and they were pretty closely spaced to each other. And [they were at] 28,000 feet going a hundred knots tracking south,” he said in “The Nimitz Encounters” documentary, as reported by the outlet.
Turner allegedly wound up being a witness to the incident after viewing one of the console monitors on the USS Princeton.
“This thing was going berserk, like making turns. It’s incredible the amount of G-forces that it would put on a human. It made a maneuver, like they were chasing it straight on, it was going with them, then this thing stopped turning, just gone. In an instant,” Turner said to Popular Mechanics. ”The video you see now, that’s just a small snippet in the beginning of the whole video. But this thing, it was so much more than what you see in this video.”
Not long after the encounter, Hughes, who was tasked with routinely storing the E-2 Hawkeye’s hard drives, was ordered to hand over the data bricks by his commanding officer.
“We call them bricks, but they contain the software to run the airplane and they also record or can record a lot of the data that the air crew sees during the flight,” he said.
While Hughes - unaware of the encounter at the time - complied with the order and turned over the hard drives, he was puzzled, because he had never seen or been introduced to the pair of men accompanying his leader.
“They were not on the ship earlier, and I didn’t see them come on. I’m not sure how they got there,” Hughes added, speaking of the men.
“We put them [the drives] in the bags, he took them, then he and the two anonymous officers left.”
Voorhis and Weigelt confirmed that a similar incident took place on the USS Princeton.
“These two guys show up on a helicopter, which wasn’t uncommon, but shortly after they arrived, maybe 20 minutes, I was told by my chain of command to turn over all the data recordings for the AEGIS system,” Voorhis alleged.
“They even told me to erase everything that’s in the shop — even the blank tapes.”
Cmdr. David Fravor, a retired F/1A-18 pilot, has also gone on record saying that tapes that previously existed from the encounter have suddenly gone missing.
"We came back from a cruise and they were [in place]. But then, somehow, they disappeared – no one knows where they went. There have been several COs [Commanding Officers] since then; no one knows where they went,” he said earlier this year.
However, Fravor pushed back against claims of unknown men showing up on the vessels.
“There’s still groups of people making stuff up, like someone came out … [and] he’s like, ‘I saw the whole video, the whole video is like 10 minutes long and it was doing all this.’ That’s bulls**t,” he said in an October interview - possibly referencing Voorhis, who told Popular Mechanics that he “definitely saw video that was roughly eight to 10 minutes long and a lot more clear.”
Being that he was not contacted, Fravor has his doubts that the five sailors’ account is true.
“Okay, I’ll give you credit. If they did, why wouldn’t they show up and talk to the guys who witnessed it, chased it, and one of the senior guys in the battle group?” he asked, speaking of the unknown men referenced by the other sailors.
Voorhis, along with the other four service members, clarified to Popular Mechanics that they did not witness Fravor’s particular intercept of the UFO.
The outlet attempted to dig deeper and contacted Luis Elizondo, who reportedly investigated UFOs while in the Office of the Under Secretary for Defense for Intelligence, but when he was asked about the existence of a longer video, Elizondo replied that he is “unable to comment at this time as to what is in the possession of the US government.”