By Jason Offutt
Interstate 435 surrounds Kansas City, Missouri, and its suburbs across the Missouri/Kansas state line in 81-miles of asphalt. Other than a few housing developments, the northwest stretch of the interstate that Laura Katz traveled on around 10 p.m. February 19, is quiet and dark. “It was cold and clear,” Katz said. “You could see the stars. Visibility was excellent.”
Which is how she saw the thing in the sky.
Katz was on the last half-hour of the long journey from her hometown of Council Bluffs, Iowa, to her apartment in Overland Park, Kansas, when she took the onramp onto the interstate at Platte City, Missouri, and entered this sparsely-populated area northwest of Kansas City. “I’d only been on 435 a couple of minutes and I see these things with lights,” she said. “I think, hmm, that’s weird.”
An elongated black triangle about the size of a commercial jet airliner flew toward her. A smaller one just to the south mirrored the flight path; a second smaller craft flew to the north. “To the right is another one right above the trees,” she said. “I mean right above the trees. There were no propellers, no wings, and they were flat. An airplane isn’t just flat like that.”
These three aircraft with strange lights approached the interstate with a trajectory that would lead them over Katz’s car toward nearby Kansas City International Airport. But, as the craft grew closer, Katz began to doubt if these were conventional airplanes. “I usually don’t see three airplanes that close together,” she said. “But I am by the airport so maybe they’re farther apart than what I think.”
Then she slowed and the lead craft, the largest of the three, slowly sailed over the top of her car. “It was triangle shape, almost like a Stealth Bomber shape,” she said. But Katz has seen the B-2 Stealth Bomber, and this craft was not the B-2. “I slow down and look up at this thing,” she said. “This was not an airplane. I made sure it was not an airplane before I started freaking.”
Blue and red flickering lights lined the outside of the triangles; a big white light glowed from their middle. Katz got a good look; the craft were close. “We’re talking not very high off the interstate,” she said. “Just above the trees. Probably a couple hundred feet above the trees. I was moving faster than they were.”
One of the smaller ships wasn’t moving at all. It just hovered at the tree line.
Katz’s sighting isn’t uncommon for that area. An anonymous poster to the Mutual UFO Network website described seeing something similar at 10:05 p.m. on November 9, 2012, near Parkville, Missouri, about thirteen miles from the airport. “I saw a triangle-shaped object hovering low in the sky over Parkville, Missouri,” the witness wrote in the MUFON report. “The craft had a bright white light and smaller red and blue light all which flashed randomly.”
This object hovered an estimated 200 feet above the ground. The witness saw a black triangular craft with a bright, white light shining underneath. ”I slowed down to about 15 mph because there were no other cars on the road at the time. The object … blended very well with the night sky,” the witness wrote. “I looked up into the sky very puzzled and astounded by what I had just seen. I can’t understand how something that big could just hover in place so low to the ground and not make a sound.”
Margie Kay, the assistant state director for the Missouri MUFON chapter, said Katz and the witness from Parkville aren’t alone. “There has been some UFO activity in that area, in particular along the river and along I-29 and I-435 at the Missouri/Kansas border,” Kay said. “There were eighty-three reported triangular craft in Missouri from January 2011 to February 19, 2013, with twenty-six of those being along this western corridor.”
Due to the proximity of Whiteman Air Force Base, home of the B-2 Spirit stealth bomber (93 miles away), Fort Riley (141 miles) and Offutt Air Force Base (161 miles away), Kay doesn’t rule out a terrestrial explanation. “I would not be surprised at all if they are some top secret military craft,” she said. “But that is just speculation.”
Kay’s colleague in Kansas, MUFON field investigator Stan Seba, agrees. “I’m not saying this is extraterrestrial,” he said. “Me and my colleagues believe it’s something of a terrestrial origin.” Over the past few years he’s tracked black triangle sightings across the greater Kansas City area, and many of the sightings are the same. In his research, Seba has noted similarities in the sightings of black triangular craft:
- They are seen at specific altitudes, or very close to the ground, usually less than 500 feet.
- They are much slower than conventional aircraft.
- They are seen over interstate highways.
- They are seen over areas of dense population or over areas of economic development.
- No identifiable identification.
- Unconventional lighting.
- Specific flight paths.
A common thread among these sightings is the interstate system. “In the greater Kansas City area, people are most likely to see triangles on Interstate 653, Interstate 35 and Interstate 435,” he said. “It’s kind of a long line. Some pilots call it IFR. I Follow Roads. And when you’re traveling along the interstate, except for billboards you have an excellent view of the sky.”
This link to terrestrial pilots is one of the reasons Seba said the ships may indeed be some of ours. He sited the words of former Skunk Works director Ben Rich from his book Skunk Works: A Personal Memoir of My Years of Lockheed: ‘We now have the technology to take ET home.’ “If he was being honest with that quote,” Seba said. “There’s no telling what we have.”
However, Seba is also not ruling out that these ships could be extraterrestrial.
Katz is sure they are. “I’m going between 50 and 65 m.p.h. and they’re just gliding through the air; something the military would cover in seconds,” she said. “They were going so slow I could see them in my rearview mirror.”
She saw more than the three slow-moving black triangles on her drive home. “I go a few miles and there’s another one, but not as big as the first,” she said. “I get to the race track (Kansas Speedway) and there’s one right above the Toyota dealership. It was a smaller one. It was stationary.”
Katz wasn’t the only one in the car to know something was wrong; she had three pets with her. “The most mellow cat, right before the Platte City exit (minutes before her first sighting) starts making this noise,” she said. “Not her normal meow. The other two were still, but one was making this noise, this odd, odd noise. She’s in her carrier so I can’t do anything about it.” The cat continued to make this noise for miles. “She didn’t stop until we passed the last one. Super weird,” Katz said.
Seba said there have been reports of similar pet reaction in relation to black triangle sightings.
“I think they’re UFOs, no doubt in my mind,” Katz said. “I’m open to them being military, but I know they weren’t airplanes.”