Below is an excerpt from an article published in the Spring 2004 issue of the International UFO Reporter. IUR has been one of the world's leading journals since it's first issue appeared in November 1976.
On an early summer night in 1968, various witnesses in Southern California observed a rather peculiar sight in the sky. Fortuitously, the Los Angeles NICAP Subcommittee had established SKYNET, a tracking and filter center designed to collect and investigate UFO reports. On the night of July 9, a series of phone calls from Long Beach and surrounding communities concerning a large, glowing mass, positioned high over the Catalina Channel, came into the project coordinator's home in Pasadena.
The first call came from a group of teenagers aged 13 to 18 gathered at the home of Kenneth Allgreen, three miles north of the shoreline. At 9:35 p.m. they noticed a graywhite diamond-shaped haze under the full moon in the south-southeast. At 10:05 it began moving 55 degrees of arc in a horizontal line toward the west. By 10:15 it had returned to its original position near the moon. Maneuvering near the large mass were five smaller cloud-like objects, oval shaped with clear-cut edges. Two were grayish and three were "kind of white". Viewed through binoculars they looked solid. They kept their shape and precise edges through subsequent maneuvers. Although the edges of the larger object were "fuzzy", it did not seem to be a normal cloud because it moved too fast during its brief journey westward and back again - 55 degrees in three minutes. It was many times the size of the smaller balls, an estimated 5?6 times the diameter of the full moon. The end facing west was long and narrow and the part facing east was shaped "like a diamond". The boys were convinced that they were viewing something highly unusual. They estimated that the main mass was about 10 miles high. About 11:00 p.m. the large mass turned reddish-orange in color and began traveling upward at an approximate angle of 30 degrees. By 11:30 p.m., it "just faded away", taking five minutes to dissipate.
A sketch of the cloud cigar and satellite objects that illustrated the IUR article (adapted here for publication)
The next call to SKYNET came from the family of I. Castano of Compton. From their home 7 miles north of the Long Beach witnesses, his family had viewed a group of four oval, cloud-like objects about one-eighth the size of the full moon. The objects were observed from 9:30 to 10:00 p.m. and were glowing white with precise edges. They were gathered around the moon when first seen and then started leaving "right and left". They seemed to be far out in space. Stated Castano, "the objects spread out and then dashed toward one another. It looked like some kind of war". The Castanos apparently did not see the large cloud, but it should be noted that they were further north than the Long Beach witnesses.
Another report comes from the files of Paul Wilson of Hawthorne, a local UFO investigator. His neighbors, Michael and Leslie G., told him that for 20 minutes they had viewed a glowing oval object, slightly smaller than the full moon. It was shiny and white with clear-cut edges and seemed to be several miles away. Soundless, it seemed to maneuver in the general area of the moon.
While this activity was going on, SKYNET contacted Jim Griebel, the only SKYNET member residing near the coast. His home was three miles north of the Long Beach witnesses. Through binoculars he could see a cloudlike mass low on the southerly horizon. Whether composed of one or two masses he was not sure, but the cloud(s) seemed diamond-shaped on one end and round on the other. While the bright light from the moon interfered with Griebel's view, there would seem to be little doubt that he was seeing the large, cloud-like mass which was being viewed from Long Beach.