I had run away from home, away from legal problems I was having. I had run away with the intentions on going as far as I could go before the law had caught up with me and when they did, I had a simple solution. I would commit suicide. I had brought along one of my parent's shot guns, known as a 410.
October 12, 1994. For some reason this night, I felt the urge to come clean with my parents, my father in particular because I felt bad for taking his truck and running from my problems. I wrote him a long letter and placed it inside the glove box of the truck. At this time, I had no idea what was going to transpire the next afternoon. I could feel my heart breaking as I wrote the letter. I stared up at the midnight sky, the stars and the moon. I prayed to God that this was all a horrible dream, but I knew it wasn't.
October 13, 1994. It was this afternoon that the truck had finally ran out of gas and I found myself stranded alongside highway I-70. For several hours, I tried to think of my options. I was out of gas and out of money. It wasn't long before a highway trooper heading southbound had noticed the truck broken down on the northbound highway. I watched as he exited and then turned back onto the highway to come aid me in my troubles. I hoped that he would pass by but all too soon his emergency lights came on and he pulled behind the truck. I panicked.
At this time, I was standing at the passenger side door with it open and the shotgun on the front seat. I had been thinking of suicide moments earlier. I assumed the officer was running the plates as I watched him inside his cruiser talking on the radio. I knew that he would soon learn that the truck was reported stolen and that I would be wanted back in Michigan for writing bad checks. I reached for the 410 and placed it against the center of my chest. I pulled the trigger. It happened quickly and I found myself stumbling backwards and placing my hand over the wound. It was like a water hose running warm water.
The officer jumped out of his car and squatted down with his gun drawn. It took him a moment to realize what had happened as I stumbled back towards his cruiser. I wanted him to know that he was not in danger. I awoke and found myself in the ambulance with the someone saying, 'I can't believe this, we're stuck.' I awoke again and watched as a woman was looking down at me, sitting on top of me. Lights were going by. I knew I was in the hospital, being rushed down a hallway.
I awoke again when they moved me onto the table for surgery. They rolled me. 'There is no time,' I heard a voice. They rolled me onto my side and I felt a horrible burning. Then it happened.
I found myself in darkness as if I were out in the middle of nowhere, in the dark on a warm night. There were no sounds, at least not at first. I was not afraid; there was nothing to be afraid of. I felt the presence of someone there, but I saw no one. It was peaceful, but dark.
I felt a breeze upon my face. It was hard to tell whether it was the wind blowing or me moving. The breeze upon my face grew. It wasn't long before I knew that it was I that was moving and not the wind blowing. It was still dark; I could feel myself moving, rushing. Rushing by things hidden in the dark. Things that I felt were watching me, wanting me, but I was unafraid. It was then that for some reason I could recall a staff. Perhaps a man dressed in a black robe with a soft face and gray hair. I don't recall seeing this man, just an image that to this day I can recall - a recollection of this man as if I were looking at him in the dark through blurred glasses. His image stands out, even his dark robe, illuminated in the dark. Perhaps I did see him, and maybe I didn't. But I recall the staff in front or alongside me. We were gliding through the darkness and I felt safe. I knew that as long as he was there I was safe. I would hate to be in that place if he weren't there, that I knew for sure.
I awoke about forty-eight hours later to find my mother holding my hand. I had learned that my blood pressure fell to 20/40 and that all my internal organs had shut down. I learned that they massaged my heart and that I had lost heartbeat, but cannot recall for how long. I learned that a wife and husband doctor team had worked on me and that they almost pronounced me dead. The ambulance had gotten stuck trying to go through the median to head back south towards the hospital. It took them a little over an hour to get me to the hospital.
I live my life recalling those times, glad that I had survived and happy to live each day. My life has changed, changed for the best. Everything happens for a reason and I am glad that I had a chance to live through what I did. So many things have changed. Not one day. NOT ONE goes by that I do not think of Jesus, God.
Date NDE Occurred: October 13, 1994
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Suicide attempt Life threatening event, but not clinical death Gunshot to chest.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Wonderful
Did you feel separated from your body? Yes I lost awareness of my body
How did your highest level of consciousness and alertness during the experience compare to your normal everyday consciousness and alertness? Less consciousness and alertness than normal
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? During the first part of surgery.
Were your thoughts speeded up? Incredibly fast
Did time seem to speed up or slow down? Everything seemed to be happening at once; or time stopped or lost all meaning
Were your senses more vivid than usual? Incredibly more vivid
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? Yes, and the facts have been checked out
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Uncertain During my darkness experience it felt as if I were in a tunnel.
Did you see any beings in your experience? I actually saw them
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? Uncertain
The experience included: Void
The experience included: Darkness
Did you see, or feel surrounded by, a brilliant light? A light clearly of mystical or other-worldly origin
Did you see an unearthly light? No
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm see description above
What emotions did you feel during the experience? I felt safe. I didn't feel any pain, sadness, happiness. I felt nothing but safe.
Did you have a feeling of peace or pleasantness? Incredible peace or pleasantness
Did you have a feeling of joy? incredible joy
Did you feel a sense of harmony or unity with the universe? I felt united or one with the world
Did you suddenly seem to understand everything? Everything about the universe
Did scenes from your past come back to you? My past flashed before me, out of my control
Did scenes from the future come to you? Scenes from the world's future
Did you come to a border or point of no return? I came to a barrier that I was not permitted to cross; or was sent back against my will
God, Spiritual and Religion:
What was your religion prior to your experience? Moderate Seven Day Adventist but not practicing or attending church.
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Yes
What is your religion now? Moderate Christian, Believing but not attending church services
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes
The experience included: Presence of unearthly beings
Did you seem to encounter a mystical being or presence, or hear an unidentifiable voice? I encountered a definite being, or a voice clearly of mystical or unearthly origin
Did you see deceased or religious spirits? I actually saw them
Concerning our Earthly lives other than Religion:
During your experience, did you gain special knowledge or information about your purpose? Uncertain I felt that for some reason everything was okay and that things we worry about weren't that important.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? No
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? No
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? No
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes Days.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? No
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real. I know that it was real. I feel to this day as I felt then, I can recall the feeling.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real.
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? No