This article covers the event popularly known as the “George Gorman UFO dogfight” that occurred over Fargo, North Dakota in 1948. This UFO incident was the focus of a Project Blue Book investigation.
Fighter Pilot Encounters Flying Saucer
(Council Bluffs Iowa Nonpareil October, 03, 1948)
FARGO, N.D. AP — A National Guard fighter pilot Saturday told a story of a 30 minute encounter with a mysterious flying object over this city in the darkness–and his account was supported by two control tower operators and another flier.
In a signed statement for air force intelligence, the pilot, Lt. George Gorman of the 178th fighter squadron, North Dakota Air National Guard, claimed he chased and did aerial maneuvers Friday night with a lighted, disk-like object which outran and outmaneuvered him.
Watching him and the object with binoculars were Lloyd Jenson and H.E. Johnson, both of Fargo, control tower operators at Hector airport here. Both said in statements today that no other aircraft had reported to the tower besides Gorman’s F-51 fighter and a cub, whose pilot Dr. A. E. Cannon of Fargo, also reported watching Gorman and the object dogfight around Fargo.
GOrman said he first caught sight of the lighted object between his ship and the city’s lights at about 4,500 feet. The F-51 pilot said he attempted to intercept the object, making head-on passes, but that it outran him for nearly a half hour until he lost it at 17,000 feet. Gorman said his speed at various times throughout the engagement ranged from 270 miles to 400 miles an hour.
All four men identified the object as a round light, perfectly formed, with no rays leaving its body and traveling at a speed consistently faster than the F-51.
“I’ve never seen anything like it,” Gorman said. “If anyone else had reported such a thing I would have thought they were crazy.”
Major D.C. Jones, commanding officer of the North Dakota 178th fighter squadron said he would send Lt. Gorman’s statements to airforce intelligence but refused to comment further.