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TYLER, TX (KLTV) -
UFOs at Tyler Pounds Field Regional Airport were seen by at least a dozen people on Tuesday.
But they're not the kind of UFOs you see flying around in the sky.
Well, actually they are. In this case, UFO stands for United Flying Octogenarians. To get in the group, you have to be an active pilot when you turn 80 years old.
We managed to get one of them to sit still long enough to tell his story.
These folks look like they're slowing down, but looks are pretty deceiving sometimes. All of them often move at over a hundred miles an hour.
Horace Abbott is a newbie in the United Flying Octogenarians. He's only 80, and he's been moving at least that fast for 60 years. He was stationed near Fairbanks, Alaska during the Korean War.
"If you take off at six in the morning it's daylight, and you come in at ten at night and it's daylight," Horace said.
He wasn't a pilot back then; that didn't happen until 1962, but he was a crewman in a B-29.
"So you flew weather recon?" I asked Horace.
"I was a crew member on weather recon," he clarified.
The air samples they would gather as close to Russia as possible was tested for particulate.
"It would give precise information about atomic fallouts," Horace revealed.
They weren't flying over the North Pole to take temperatures. They were testing for Nuclear Winter; or at least signs that Russia was testing the A-bomb.
"The average mission was close to 15 hours, normally what our missions were," Horace said.
"So, no overtime?" I asked him.
"No overtime, no," he laughed.
"You need to do some paperwork on that," I advised.
"I don't know about today's military, but then you were on duty 24 hours a day," Horace recalled.
They all have stories as interesting as that.
After lunch they toured the museum and checked out some planes on the tarmac, and it was time to head out.
Off they go into the wild blue yonder.
Well, not all of us.
"I guess we're stuck out here," I said about the locked tarmac door.
"Yes," Horace said.
"Well, at least it's secure," I observed.
There are only about 1,200 UFOs nationwide, and around twenty live in East Texas. Many of the pilots flew in World War II or Korea, while others got their license later in life.
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