TBT: Halftime for 2014, and UFO escorts for FL Gov. Burns

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Yesterday, July 2, is the exact halfway point of the year. To be specific, this midpoint fell at noon. The day is commemorated, by coincidence, with Flag Day in Curacao, Independence Day in Bahia, Police Day in Azerbaijan, and World UFO Day around the globe.

Why this latter observance? Because on July 2, 1947, sixty-seven years ago, a UFO supposedly crashed in Roswell.

Instead of recounting this widely known story, let’s look instead at some Florida-based extraterrestrial history.

First, we go to the Gulf Breeze UFO incident of 1987. On November 11, news of high-quality UFO photos from Florida’s tiny town of Gulf Breeze were circulated worldwide. They became the topic of myriad newspaper articles and TV talk shows. While over 200 people came forward with related sightings, the man at the center of the Gulf Breeze incident — Ed Walters– is now assumed to have pulled a hoax. A model UFO was found in a house once owned by Walters, and a suspicious money trail leading to Walters was also uncovered.

About twenty years prior, in April 1966, Florida Gov. Haydon Burns was flying in his Convair when he saw unidentified lights trailing his plane after a campaign stop in Orlando. The UFOs were also witnessed by the two pilots, as well as a Florida Highway Patrol captain, six staffers, four newspaper reporters, and the governor’s wife. The lights were round and maintained their speed, following the governor’s plane for 40 miles. Burns ordered the pilots to chase the lights — and they did. The lights vanished when the plane turned to intercept them. Air traffic control was notified at Miami, who saw Burns’ plane but no other objects nearby it.

In 2011, a UFO came close to the ground in Key West, was spotted by a witness who snapped a picture. The image reveals a blurry object that is said to have vanished just after the image was taken.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.