Witnessing the meteor - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Witnessing the meteor


Some of you saw it burning through the sky last night, but it happened so fast, most that saw the ball of light streaking through the East Texas sky didn't have time to get a picture.

We talked to a couple witnesses, and someone who is an expert on things that happen out there in the ether.

Forrest Monroe Lovelady, Skip Herring and a Texas Police car camera have something in common. They were all looking at the right place at the right time, and spotted this white glowing blob moving through the night sky.

"I was laying rock, building a small fireplace and Kenneth was sitting in the truck and he jumped up and said he, look there, Monroe, look there. And, I looked up and I saw what seemed like a meteorite go through the sky, about five or six seconds of it. It had like sparks and flames flying off the back of it, then it just disappeared, "Monroe recalled.

"I was on my way home from church last night. I live just north of Greshom, and I have to make a left to turn into my subdivision, and right in front of me was that big ball of fire. Kind of like Jerry Lee Lewis. And, it didn't last..what I saw..but just a few seconds. And, I knew it wasn't a shooting star, and then I realized that it was moving. About the time I focused in on it it actually burned up. But, I thought it was very, very cool," stated Skip Herring.

Skip almost got a picture, but he only saw it for a few seconds.

Tom Hooten is Director of Earth and Space Science Education at Tyler Junior College. He didn't see the object, but he's seen the video and heard the F.A.A. has called it a meteor.

"The term meteor simply means that bright streak that's in the sky. As to what causes that, it could be two or three different things. It could be a piece of space junk: in other word, some type of man-made object that has fallen back through the atmosphere and is producing the bright streak or the meteor. Or, it could be a natural stone like an asteroid or a meteoroid that is falling through the atmosphere and is leaving the bright streak," Tom explained.

Tom also says objects that large commonly whiz through our atmosphere, but usually not during prime time over populated areas.

Professor Hooten said the meteor may have skipped off the atmosphere, or could have made it all the way to the Pacific before it hit.

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