The UFO phenomenon is extraordinarily complex, however the main focus is undeniably face-to-face encounters or the onboard UFO experience. Still, when people think of these types of close encounters, they often assume that the experience is a terrifying event during which the unwilling victim is laid out on a table and examined by emotionless gray-type ETs. While I believe these types of encounters do happen, this is only a small part of the UFO experience. In reality, people experience a much wider variety of encounters. Contrary to popular opinion, onboard UFO experiences are not always involuntary and terrifying. Many people experience encounters during which they are actually helped or healed. There seems to be multiple reasons why people are contacted by aliens.
My book, Extraterrestrial Visitations: True Accounts of Contact (Llewellyn, 2002) focuses only on those types of encounters which involve considerable interaction between the witnesses and the UFO. Each case involves either a face-to-face encounter, missing time or an onboard experience. Although these cases are among the most extensive I have ever investigated, at least half of them are not typical and move beyond the standard abduction scenario.
Rescued by Aliens
The following case is a perfect example. Sherry Jamison (pseudonym) worked first as a real-estate agent, then later returned to school, earned a degree and became a licensed therapist. She has been married for many years and has a full-grown child. She is both humble and dignified, with a quick wit and a positive outlook on life. Looking at her, you would never guess that she has had many bizarre experiences with extraterrestrials.
Sherry's first experience occurred when she was only eight. She lived with her parents in rural New Jersey. One night in the early 1950s, Sherry awoke to find herself outside her home, standing in a nearby field. She had no idea how she got there, but looking up, she saw a small, metallic, saucer-shaped craft hovering above her. It instantly swooped down and sent down a beam of light directly on her. Says Sherry, "The craft was into a very big craft…but what happened was, it put its light on me. I remember running along the fence, trying to get away from it….I remember running along the fence, and this craft was chasing me. I was trying to duck down and this craft was chasing me....I was running and falling, running and falling."
The next thing Sherry realized, the craft had struck her with a beam of light and she was lifted aboard. "It was like a flashlight. It was a very strong beam because I went right up into the craft. My sensation of fear left me. I was so afraid when it was chasing me."
At that point, Sherry remembered nothing but waking up the next morning. At first she thought it had been a strange dream, but she realized that she had a different outfit on then when she went to bed, and her clothes were inexplicably dirty. Whatever had happened, it wasn't a dream.
As she grew up, Sherry began to have bizarre nighttime experiences, half-remembered dreams and recollections of grey-type aliens standing around her bed. She began to awaken with unusual marks and scars on he body. Over a period of years, she slowly began to connect her experiences, and wondered if she was one of those people labeled as UFO contactees.
Of course, this was no sudden revelation. She knew something strange was going on, but extraterrestrials? It seemed too outlandish to even consider.
Then in the 1960s, Sherry experienced an event which left no doubt in her mind that she was in contact with extraterrestrials. It remains one of the strangest encounters I have ever investigated.
Sherry was driving alone in the middle of the night through the Watchung Mountains of New Jersey when she lost control of her motorcycle and crashed. Because it was so late at night and the road was totally isolated, there was no traffic at all. Sherry was totally alone.
Or so she thought.
Moments after the accident, Sherry was startled to see three strange figures. She instantly recognized them as the figures she had seen before, in her bedroom at night. Says Sherry, "When I was driving on a motorcycle once in the mountains, I had an experience—these same people appeared to me. They were like greys, more detailed, more white, not quite human. I would say like a body suit on a human figure, a white body suit, not a grey one, but maybe an off-white or a beige-grey.
"I was riding a bike and I slid my bike. I had bent the kick-stand when I did. I didn't hurt myself, but I had bent the kick-stand, and I couldn't move [it] to get the bike started. It was very dark. I didn't see a mother ship or anything. But again, I call them aliens only now. I always didn't know what to call them. They were just my friends. There were two of them. They looked at me and silently picked up my motorcycle, took the bar and straightened it out into a kick-stand again. I nodded and kicked it. It was just like, okay. I kicked it; we didn't have electric starters at that time. I kicked the motorcycle over and off I went."
Sherry was astonished by the event. She was already shaken up from the accident, but the appearance of the figures took her totally by surprise. Says Sherry, "They were both right there. They were about a foot and a half away. One looked at me. They both looked at the one doing it. They were both like "greys" look, without clothes. They didn't have any attire on or anything on. They looked like greys except they were more human-proportioned. Except they did have the dark eyes, but not as almond-shaped as that. It was the only think dark that appeared on them.
"And I wish now I could have not been so worried and disturbed, or that I could have paid more attention. But they weren't threatening. They just kind of nodded and went on their way….they looked almost luminous. So it was kind of strange. It was very strange."
Although that was Sherry's most intense face-to-face encounter, she continued to have a number of other close-up sightings of metallic craft.
Sherry's case is difficult to classify. Although she did experience an apparent missing-time abduction, she has also had an undeniably positive encounter. She has no desire to be hypnotized, and is content to call the aliens her "friends."
It took Sherry a long time to conclude that she was having encounters with aliens because the figures looked almost human, the only real difference being that their eyes were larger and darker than humans. Sherry is only one person of many who have moved beyond abductions.
Invited Aboard and Healed
In 1995, retired couple William and Rose Shelhart experienced a missing time encounter with a UFO outside of Sedona, Arizona. As they drove along an isolated road, they saw a light following them. It appeared first ahead of behind them, as if playing a game of hide and seek. Suddenly, the light zoomed down out of the sky and landed into a field next to their car. The couple promptly lost consciousness. Their next memory was of stumbling into a hotel hours later.
Realizing they had experienced missing time, they underwent hypnosis during which they recalled that they weren't abducted, but were invited onboard. Says Rose, "We weren't kidnapped or abducted. We voluntarily boarded and we were welcome. We sought them out and we climbed aboard, not being abducted as "in force."
Rose was surprised at the appearance of the ETs. As she says, "They looked a lot more like people than some of those sketches do. A lot more. Their eyes were a little larger than any white person's big eyes would be, but they were just not enormous. They looked like they could pass for us if they wished. And they glowed with a blue aura which made me feel reassured, kind of on a mental level, that they were peaceful."
Rose was also surprised by their clothing. "Something like a military outfit, but not anything I have ever seen, and I've been in Europe and here and so forth. But it would resemble that because they were all alike, but more loose-fitting, but with belt. Uniforms, but it looked structured more like, "I mean business."
Another surprise was the lack of technological equipment on board. "Oh, there were all kinds of lights, but very few actual gizmos like we have on any aircraft here. [It was] like they didn't need them. It didn't look like they needed too many things. It's like they almost had mind control to get the thing going. But there were little lights, I guess for monitors and things."
Rose recalled other details regarding the ETs place of origin and their intentions on Earth. William, however, was not a good hypnotic subject and was unable to recall anything other than the craft landing and them being invited onboard.
William had experienced an earlier terrifying episode with missing time, so he was somewhat relieved that their encounter turned out to be benevolent.
Later, William and Rose had another encounter in their isolated home in Hawaii, which confirmed for them that the ETs were interested in their welfare. His first clue occurred upon waking up one morning and finding a strange mark on his body. Says William, "I woke one morning and I felt an itch on my right foot and discovered three puncture wounds in a perfect triangle. They were in the process of scabbing over. I sleep on a waterbed, so nothing could have scratched it. My wife was the only witness. I felt something itching on my right ankle, and that's when I looked. Because there's no way possible in the night I could have done this, and that's when it happened."
William was concerned by the marks because it was obvious that they were not natural. But what could they be?
The answer came about two weeks later when the same incident occurred again, only this time William was awakened by an unexplained bright beam of light entering into his bedroom. Says William, "I woke in the middle of the night with a bright light coming in the back window. It lasted about thirty to sixty seconds. I froze and could not get out of bed to look outside. My backyard is a jungle of coconut trees and plants. As I live in the country, no car could get there in that time. When the light came in the back window, it was just as bright as could be. I couldn't believe it, and there's nothing in the back. There's no way a car could have gotten in there. I mean, that's what it looked like—somebody's headlight shining right into the window. I remember waking up and seeing that. This was just kind of shocking thing."
William's first instinct was to get up and investigate. Strangely, however, he found himself paralyzed. Seconds later, he felt himself being put to sleep. When morning came and he awoke, he immediately remembered the incident that had occurred in the middle of the night. He could only shake his head in wonder. Then he looked down to his right arm and received an incredible shock. Says William, "My right wrist was itching. The same thing happened—three puncture wounds in a perfect triangle…I woke up and found those triangular pin-pricks on my right hand. And this was the hand I used when I carried mail. This was in constant use. And they were very fresh, because you could still see, they had just about scabbed over. I showed them to my wife immediately. I said, "My God! Look at this thing. It's perfect. It's a perfect triangle."
William had worked for years as a postal worker and had developed severe carpel-tunnel syndrome in his right wrist, as well as permanent damage in his left ankle. However, immediately following the two above incidents, he noticed a dramatic improvement in his health. "I went and got myself a hot tub. I did everything I could to take some of that pain away. And it wasn't until after my incident that things started to get better. I just know that I progressed and started to get better. Since thin, I have been 90 percent cured….I am almost sixty-seven years old and I can hang off a twenty-foot ladder placing the weight on my right foot and paint with my right hand, day after day. I really don't care if people doubt my explanation. I know what I feel."
William and Rose are the perfect example of people who have moved beyond the typical abduction scenario. Not only were they healed, but they have now become healers themselves. This pattern has turned up in other cases. Says Rose, "Both of us have become more and more interested in helping people in alternative healing ways. Even William, he has this energy in his hands that he didn't have before….now it's like I feel this heat coming out that's really good. And people say they feel it out of me too. And I say, 'Oh, where did I get this from.' I have a lot of good result stories from the neighborhood. But I'm grateful, because I think it [the UFO connection] has a lot to do with it."
Six Hours Onboard a UFO
In 1972, when he was 12 years old, Jack Stephens was abducted from his vehicle in full view of his mother and brother. He was lifted up inside a beam of light and taken inside an enormous craft the size of a small building. He experienced a six-hour-long encounter aboard the UFO before being deposited back into the car.
The stunned family drove home, with most of the event shrouded in amnesia. They recalled only a powerful light hitting the car, the engine turning off and a slight floating sensation. Their next memory was the light turning off, the car engine turning on and six hours had passed. It was a typical missing time encounter.
Years later, as an adult, Jack bit down on an impacted wisdom tooth. This caused a flood of memories to burst forth. Jack suddenly recalled everything that happened.
In most respects, Jack experienced the typical abduction scenario. He recalled being taken aboard onto the craft. He was laid out on a table and examined. They poked at his feet, probed inside his mouth. Jack is unable to recall the appearance of the beings, only that they were short and incredibly scary-looking.
It's what happened next, however, that makes Jack’s account unique in UFO literature.
Investigators have long noticed that UFOs often hover over electric power lines, as if they were drawing electricity into their craft. Jack is the first abductee to witness this exact procedure from the perspective of inside the ET craft.
After the examination, Jack was floated off the table and into another room. The beings then placed him in a strange device which allowed him to view the procedure. Says Jack, "We went straight up above the fog. I could look out. The next thing, I was down in this thing. It was like a little clear diamond-thing on the bottom of [the craft.] I'm in this thing and there are like bungee cords on me. I sat in this clear diamond-shape—actually suspended, it almost felt like bungee cords, but I could see everything around. I got a 360-degree view. I could look everywhere. We drop back down and we're by my farm. We're literally down in the pasture above this ditch. And there are some big high voltage power lines, heavy-duty power lines through there. You can just feel the electricity coming off.
"Well, as we dropped down to this thing, whatever the clear thing I was in, in the bottom, kind of got smaller. It was kind of like more of a confined space. It seemed wide open to me before, and yet I was enclosed, in kind of like plastic or glass."
Jack was in awe. It felt like he was dangling below the craft with a perfect view of everything around. The room he was in seemed to design specifically for observation. In fact, the whole room would swivel towards whatever direction he looked. "In places it didn't move at all, like if I just wanted to look one way, it just stayed there. But if I turned, it would move all over. But if I just stopped and looked one way, it would stop and look one way."
At this point, the procedure began. "[They] were explaining to me what they were doing. I don't know what it was, but we went up to the power lines. And after we got back down, that little thing I was in seemed to kind of shrink up inside. [There were] four rotating things on each side of this thing—the diamond or triangle or whatever it was—there were four lights that started spinning around. And I could see them from where I was…And I saw all those beams suck all together, come into one big beam and hit the power pole, sucking the electricity out of it. And these were like, I mean, LIGHTS! They all focused into one and they started sucking electricity out of the power poles. I can't describe it but I could literally feel it going through my body.
"I remember being cold. That's when they sucked up the electricity. That is the most vivid part of the whole thing. We were up above it, a telephone pole, maybe two telephone pole lengths above it. And all those lights focusing into one super bright light—just pshew! Just literally seeing the electricity coming out of there, and feeling it. It was just like it drained everything, just took it all.
"Another thing, when I was up in that thing, we were above the fog, just kind of floating above this fog. And when they went to go suck the electricity out of the power lines, that fog just got out of the way. It just opened wide up, just shew!—got out of the way, and I could see crystal clear.
"Another thing, I remember my teeth kind of hurting when it was sucking that stuff up. Just like when you're chewing on aluminum foil. I remember feeling like, 'Hurry up, get this thing over with.'"
While Jack recalls several other events, it was the above incident which remains the most memorable. As can be seen, the aliens seem to have intentions beyond just an abduction and physical examination.
Taken to an Underground Base
The standard abduction scenario usually involves a person being taken inside a UFO and examined by grey-type extraterrestrials. But again, this scenario is not as common as many might believe. Consider the following case, in which a young man was abducted, not by grey-type ETs, but by praying-mantis-type ETs. Nor was he taken inside a UFO. In fact, he recalled being taken to an apparent underground base!
In 1967, twelve-year-old, Paul Nelson (pseudonym) was visiting the island of Catalina with his parents. Also along was Paul's best friend, Michael (pseudonym.) The two boys decided to go inside their boat and read some new comic books. Suddenly, however, they both experienced an episode of missing time. Their next memory was of waking up the next morning. While Paul was unable to convince his parents that anything unusual had happened, both Paul and his friend knew that the event was strange.
Two weeks later, Paul was alone in his Reseda, California home when he had another strange experience. He was alone in his room when the door began to rattle. He jumped up and threw it open. To his shock, he saw the shadow of a small figure running down the hallway. He chased after it, but found nothing.
Paul didn't know how to explain these experiences and didn't connect it to the UFO phenomenon. However, afterwards he developed an interest in UFOs and began to read up on the subject.
Many years later, he grew up, married, became a doctor and had two children. Then he had a UFO sighting of a distant object in the daytime sky. This renewed his interest in UFOs. He began reading about the missing time aspect of UFO encounters when he realized that he had experienced missing time.
Intrigued, he eventually underwent hypnosis to recover his lost memories. Having read about UFOs, he expected to find that he had a frightening encounter, during which he would be examined by grey-type ETs, aboard a UFO using highly technological equipment. Instead, it was nothing like this.
As Paul underwent the regression, his first surprise was that he was not aboard a UFO, but instead appeared to be in an underground base. Says Paul, "I was taken to a round-walled room. It seemed to me more underground than it did onboard a ship. The walls had kind of rock-like facet to them. And I was on a table…Yeah, rock-like walls rather than metallic craft-type walls. It gave the impression that I was in a cavern [rather] than in a ship…It was more of an underground feeling that's true. That is a little anomalous."
Under hypnosis, Paul recalled his friend, Michael nearby, also being examined. His next surprise was that the beings were what he expected. Says Paul, "The beings weren't the typical greys, they were more the 'Praying Mantis' type, as I later understood. The eyes were slightly bigger than what is seen in the typical small grey, and a little more insectoid-like…They wore tight-fitting uniforms, I believe. There was even a color to them, but I can't remember what the color was…tight-fitting jump-suit like things. I think there was one in that bunch that had a tunic-type thing, more looser fitting over it. I couldn't tell how tall they were because they were over me and I was on my back. So I couldn't give you the exact height. They didn't look particularly tall though."
Yet another surprise was the type of machinery in the room. Having read a good deal about UFOs, Paul expected again to see complex equipment. Instead, it all seemed amazingly primitive. Says Paul, "The machines looked like typical military-type computer consoles rather than alien-looking machines. There were lights and buttons. Well, I don't know if they were buttons, but areas that seemed to be for pushing. Colored lights—I can't remember what color off the top of my head."
Paul recalled a very short examination, but otherwise, nothing frightening happened. Never did he feel any fear. "I don't remember being particularly scared about the whole thing. In fact, I was a little intrigued by it. I don't remember anything painful occurring."
As the above cases show us, it can be extremely difficult to categorize a UFO experience. While there are definite patterns, encounters are as individual as the people who have them. Witnesses, as a rule, experience a wide variety of events beyond the abduction and examination. I am currently working with several people whose experiences with ETs are typically atypical. One case involves a southern California woman who has had multiple encounters with grey-type ETs. She has several witnesses and physical evidence to support the veracity of her encounters, which have moved beyond the standard missing-time abductions and examinations and evolved into fully-conscious encounters during which she has been healed of various ailments, has been taught how to heal, and has been given other spiritual information. She reports that the greys are very loving and emotional. Another case involves a lady who has had multiple encounters with praying-mantis-type aliens. Her encounters have not been benevolent; her health has suffered as a result. However, on a few occasions, the aliens told her extremely personal information which proved conclusively to her that they were very concerned with her life. They not only showed that they had been watching her during her entire childhood, but they also gave her a series of predictions, several of which have already come true. Some of the information was so personal, that the witness refused to even discuss it.
While abductions and examinations appear to be the single most common factor, there are a vast number of experiences beyond this. Again, the conclusion is inescapable that extraterrestrials have a deep in humanity. Why else would they take the time to fix someone's motorcycle, heal someone of carpel-tunnel syndrome or dangle somebody below their craft and show how they siphon electricity from power lines?