KHQ Broadcast Center - 1201 W. Sprague Ave. - Spokane, WA 99201

What is this? Family says it's a meteorite

SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. - Scientists say the odds of finding a meteorite are astronomical. Only six meteorites have been found in Washington in the history of the state, according to one professor, but a family in Spokane Valley thinks they might have number seven after finding a small, dark rock in their backyard this weekend.

Jerry Larson was pruning raspberry bushes with his wife Nancy when they noticed the tops of several plants were sheared off. Nearby, they found a small hole, about one foot wide and a black rock near the hole.

"I thought, ‘Well what is this?'" says Jerry. "Then we just got thinking, well, maybe this is an asteroid."

Scientists are skeptical. A professor at Cascadia Meteorite Laboratory at Portland State Laboratory said he gets about four phone calls each week about this topic. Only one call in 3,000 turns out to actually be a meteorite.

The Larsons are going to take pictures of the rock for Cascadia and will consider sending the rock to be tested.

Professors say if the rock is not a meteorite it is most likely basalt or some other rock native to Eastern Washington.

Anthony Gomes
KHQ Local News