Suspected meteor startles people across the Midwest

12/28/2013 9:12 AM

12/28/2013 9:15 AM

A bright light streaming across the sky at dusk Thursday has sparked speculation that it may have been a meteor.

“I was about three miles south of Faucett around 5:30 p.m., and a big green thing caught the corner of my eye. I’ve never seen anything like it before,” said Larry Dalrymple, driving from Kansas City to St. Joseph. “It was weird because it was very, very bright and it was bright green.”

Unable to snap a photo, Dalrymple at first thought it might be a flare or a shooting star.

“I’ve seen a lot of shooting stars and meteorites before, but this one seemed to be traveling a lot slower,” he said. “They usually burn out pretty quick. This one looked like it was on a trajectory to land around (Interstate) 29 between Faucett and St. Joe.”

In St. Joseph, Lexi Moore was driving to pick up her daughter from her parents’ house when she also noticed the trail.

“I was driving north on the Belt (Highway), and was at the stoplight in front of Cool Crest. I was looking at the sunset, because of how pretty it was,” she said. “I saw something green and blue shoot across the sky.

“At first I wrote it off as a firework, but then it got a lot bigger, a lot brighter. Then it turned into a yellow ball and disappeared.”

She looked down at the clock and noted the time at 5:42 p.m.

“At first I thought I was kind of crazy. But I got online … and there were a lot of posts about people seeing it,” Ms. Moore said. “I’m really into space stuff, and I’ve always wanted to see something like that with my own eyes.

“I think I basically just got lucky, looking at the sky in that moment.”

Social media began to buzz Thursday evening and Friday about speculation of the meteor. Individuals throughout Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, Ohio and several other states reported seeing a similar sight.

There were statements from people who posted photos and comments. Witnesses also speculated the sight was a piece from the International Space Station that may have broken off when astronauts repaired a pump from the satellite that broke earlier this month.

The National Weather Service was unable to confirm if the object was a meteor. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) was unavailable for comment.

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