They may not have been called “Foo Fighters” at the time, but Royal Air Force crews saw and reported strange lights and other objects following their aircraft over Europe at least two years before American night-fighter crews coined the name for this strange phenomenon.
Eighty years ago, one of the first recorded sightings occurred during a raid on the Turin engine works on the night of 28/29th November 1942. The crew of a Lancaster bomber based at RAF Syerston reported seeing a huge torpedo-shaped object over northern Italy, as detailed in the following report submitted by their unit to No.5 Group, Bomber Command:
“They believe it to have been 200-300 feet in length and its width is estimated at 1/5th or 1/6th of its length. The speed was estimated at 500 mph and it had four pairs of red lights spaced at equal distances along its body. These lights did not appear in any way like exhaust flames; no trace was seen. The object kept a level course.”