“I was outside talking to them (his wife and a friend), and I looked over behind, pretty much, the big tree, and at first I thought it was someone setting of fireworks,” Cory Combs said.
“And I saw an explosion and all of a sudden it was like a big ball that was falling, and it just faded.”
Combs ran into the house to get his wife to come out and see what he was witnessing in the sky near their home. He said the same thing occurred five minutes later, but it was to the left of the original sighting.
“It started on one side, halfway through the top of the sky. And then it made its way down going over to a different side,” Cory Combs said. “It was shocking. I thought a plane had hit another plane. Then, all of a sudden it started rumbling, and I was thinking it was a plane. I told my wife there is no way someone is letting off fireworks this time of night.”
The explosions and lights are something that will no doubt be etched in the minds of those who witnessed the event for a long time.
“It wasn’t a meteorite-looking thing,” Marjorie Combs said. “It was like big fireballs exploding in the sky, and falling, and almost hitting the earth. It was kind of neat, but kind of weird.”
Marjorie Combs also said the sighting was accompanied by a rumbling sound.
So what was their first thought when they saw the phenomena?
“We thought the end of time, how it talks about it in Revelation,” Marjorie Combs said.
Combs was referencing Revelation 13:13 in the Bible (KJV) — “And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men.”
Marjorie Combs is sure of the exact time the explosions began to occur.
‘When I came in to get me a cup of coffee, I looked up at the clock and it said 10:36 (p.m.),” Marjorie Combs said. “It was happening before, and when I went back out it was still happening. It lasted probably about 15 minutes.”
Marjorie Combs said she has seen shooting stars, but had never seen anything like what she saw Monday night.
“I have never seen anything like that at all,” Marjorie Combs said.
Both of the Combs insisted it was not a meteor shower, but could it have been a remnant of the comet Swift-Tuttle?
According to the NASA Web site, on July 31 Earth entered a stream of dusty debris from Comet Swift-Tuttle, the source of the annual Perseid meteor shower.
That shower was to peak on Aug. 11 and 12.
Brian Emfinger of Ozark, Arkansas, photographed the early Perseid just after midnight on Sunday, July 26, and offered a description similar to the one the Combses described.
“I used an off-the-shelf digital camera to capture this fireball and its smoky trail,” says Emfinger. “It was a bright one!”
According to Bill Cooke of NASA’s Meteoroid Environment Office — “Earthgrazers are meteors that approach from the horizon and skim the atmosphere overhead like a stone skipping across the surface of a pond. They are long, slow and colorful—among the most beautiful of meteors.”
Cory Combs is emphatic about whatever it was he witnessed Monday night at his Minford area home.
“It’s like something that I have never seen in my whole life.”
FRANK LEWIS may be reached at (740) 353-3101, ext. 232.