"It looks like a fire in the sky," she notes in the video, describing it as bright red with an orange center. She dismisses the idea it could be a drone, a plane or a children's toy of some kind, noting it was wandering back and forth.
"Maybe it's Santa and his Reindeer," she muses at one point. "It is Christmas Eve!"
"I'm not a nut," Thompson wrote in the description of the YouTube video, "I just wanted to know if anyone has had any experiences in the last few days… It really is quite amazing when you see one that seems to ‘splat' out of another dimension and change into a round shape."
Thompson's video ends after about five minutes of footage, when the orb suddenly winks out of existence.
A couple days later, Charleston NBC affiliate WCBD picked up the story and posted it on their Facebook page. That's when news started to come in that other people had seen the strange object before, or ones just like it.
Roberto Rodriguez wrote on WCBD's Facebook post, "We saw it too on the 24th at 9:30 too, In Ladson,We thought it was a UFO too." Ladson is about 25 miles north of Kiawah Island, on the inland side of Charleston.
Another local, Casey Nicholes, wrote, "My husband is a crabber and he and his coworker saw this a few years back in around the same area. It was very early morning hours. He said is was a lot bigger, did the same type of movement and it definitely wasn't a lantern. They both saw it and neither one were on drugs."
Thompson also commented on the outlet's post, further clarifying measures she'd taken to verify the orb wasn't simply a man-made object.
"I called the airport as I was taking a second film of this object and i called a few authorities that they gave me numbers for. They said they had nothing up there flying.it was to high and to big. that is why i said in the film I had nothing in the background to compare it to since it was the only visible thing in the sky at that point. To the right of Vega," she wrote.
Other folks offered suggestions that it was a Chinese lantern or a weather balloon.
The Charleston Post & Courier noted on Monday that the phenomenon "turns up in the sky here every so often," noting a similar episode in 2015 in which many people reported sightings. The website UFO-Hunters similarly noted sightings of "a very red round light" in the area in 2009 and 2012.