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Glendale man finds meteorite in front yard after monsoon storm

Posted: 10:33 PM, Aug 20, 2018
Updated: 2018-08-21 01:33:10-04

Not too many people saw the flash of light streak across the night sky in the Valley on July 26, but it turns out the meteorite that fell landed right in a Valley man's yard.

According to the American Meteorite Society, only 12 people reported seeing it and one person heard a sonic boom. It came on a rainy, cloudy night with thunder and lighting, but what this one left behind has made history in Arizona.

Arizona University State Professor Laurence Garvie called it the fifth meteorite fall in Arizona and the first one in the valley.  

Garvie explained that a fall occurs when witnesses see meteorites fall from the sky and the stones are then tracked to the ground. While meteorite "finds" are much more common, no one knows when the meteorites fell, they are just there.

Glendale resident Cody Horvath made the amazing discovery in his front yard just last week.  

Horvath said he was just kicking around gravel left behind after the Monsoon storm off his walking paths when he saw something black among the gravel. At first, he thought it was just a black rock.

"I wondered what is this black rock? The more I held it and looked at it, the more I realize this isn't just some black rock from anywhere," said Horvath.

Being a rock and mineral enthusiast, he started researching meteorites and discovered what he had found.

Horvath then reached out to Professor Garvie who is also the Curator for the Center of Meteorite Studies at ASU.

Garvie immediately confirmed the finding to him, saying that indeed was a meteorite, but did not realize the gravity of what they had found until he reached out to renowned meteor hunter Robert Ward in Prescott.

Ward has traveled all over the world in pursuit of meteorites.  

He told Garvie about the reported flash in the sky last month.  

Using math and video captured on Doppler radar, and other cameras, experts were able to figure out the trajectory of the meteor and were thrilled to discover it would have rained down rocks in the North Glendale area.

Garvie said he believed there might be more meteorites scattered around north Glendale. He pointed out they could be as small as a penny or as large as a golf ball. The outside would be black, and the inside white.

If anyone finds what they believe to be a meteorite in the area, Professor Garvie wants you to send him one picture. You can reach him at LGarvie@asu.edu.

The meteorite was purchased by Ward for an undisclosed amount of money. He said he planned to get the rock especially sliced at a high tech facility in Colorado and donate a chunk to ASU for research and display.

Horvath said he was just glad he could be a part of important celestial history in Arizona.