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LMUD Presents: This Day in Susanville History – June 13, 1945

Thursday, June 13th, 2019

Venus Confused with Japanese Balloon
June 13, 1945

Japanese fire balloon taken at Moffet Field in 1945

That shimmering object in the sky which had thrown Westwood, Chester and Susanville into a mild hysteria the past several days, isn’t a Japanese balloon after all. It’s the morning star, Venus.

Reports that the cylindrical object (the Japanese bomb balloons are reported longitudinal in shape) which some “experts” placed at 10,000 feet altitude, was variously reported over Lake Almanor, Herlong, Westwood, Susanville and Chester.

In Westwood no less than three balloons were noted.

In Susanville some observers declared that the object was parachute in shape.

That the “floating object” was the planet Venus was established by United States army airplanes who took to the skies to shoot the menace down.

Just over one month ago one woman and five children were killed in Bly, Oregon when a 13 year old girl discovered a Japanese balloon in a tree and tried to free it.

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