Jim Martin

Experience Description

I was suffering from the croup for several hours throughout the late afternoon and into the early evening. My breathing was very labored. After calling the doctor the first time and using the suggested steamy shower to clear my airway, my parents called again around 10 PM. The doctor came to the house to get directly involved with my breathing problem.

As I recall, she was only there for a few minutes attempting to place a metal breathing tube into my trachea. She determined that I needed to go immediately to the hospital, saying 'We don't have time to wait for an ambulance.' The town had a population of only about 25,000 at that time. The doctor told my parents to stay at home and call the hospital to inform them that I would require emergency surgery and to make sure that a surgeon was available. Then she instructed my parents to follow us to the hospital after the call.

The doctor placed me in her private car, drove me the 40 blocks to the hospital on the extreme north side of town. I remember we were going at a very high rate of speed and ran several red lights. Strangely, I remember in great detail the events that occurred some 60 years ago. However, I can only remember about half the twenty-minute trip. I'm sure that I must have lost consciousness from lack of oxygen. I do not remember arriving at the hospital.

I have no idea how much time that lapsed. It might have been 10 minutes or it could have been over an hour.

The first thing I remember was the intense, brilliant light that was at the end of a short tunnel. The light was brighter than any that I had ever experienced but my eyes had no trouble adjusting to that bright light. I recall that my entire life's experiences passed before me, but the only detail that I recall now was seeing my cocker spaniel, Ginger. An auto had killed her several weeks before my event.

The next thing I remember was waking up to a bright light with something red dripping in my face. My own blood was dripping off the large adjustable, mirrored-room light over the examination table on which I was.

Background Information:

Gender: Male

Date NDE Occurred: November 15,1955

NDE Elements:

At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Illness Clinical death (cessation of breathing or heart function) I was suffering upper chest/throat congestion for several hours. At around 10 PM my parents called the family doctor and she came to our home. She administered what she could from equipment and tools in her bag. Because I did not respond appropriately to her treatment, she told my parents to call the local hospital. She put me in her 1953 Plymouth and she personally drove me to the emergency room that was about 10 miles away.

How do you consider the content of your experience? Entirely pleasant

Did you feel separated from your body? No 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? More consciousness and alertness than normal Everything was more Everything; that is to say everything had more brightness, more color, and I had more 'sense of my surroundings' than normal.

At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? I have no sense of the elapsed time of my experience. Further, I have no feeling that the level changed from the first second to the last minute.

Were your thoughts speeded up? Faster than usual

Did time seem to speed up or slow down? Everything seemed to be happening at once; or time stopped or lost all meaning I have no remembrance of time fast, slow, or of elapsed time duration.

Were your senses more vivid than usual? More vivid than usual

Please compare your vision during the experience to your everyday vision that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I do not recall anything unusual about vision.

Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I have no recollection of any noise that was normal or unusual.

Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? No

The experience included: Tunnel

Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Yes Not certain what it was made of or how big or long or by what method I got through it. But I definitely remember a VERY BRIGHT light at the end of the tunnel.

Did you see any beings in your experience? No

Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? No I saw my dog.

The experience included: Unearthly light

Did you see, or feel surrounded by, a brilliant light? An unusually bright light

Did you see an unearthly light? Yes VERY, VERY Brilliant super white light. It was super intense but strangely was not difficult to look through.

Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm Open, clean and bright. I was not even sure that I was in the shape of an earthly human because I don't remember walking on ground, pavement, or on anything. No sense of distance or energy to move. I just got to the end of the tunnel. HOW? No clue.

What emotions did you feel during the experience? Quiet, clean, bright, open that I was a part of something that I did not understand.

Did you have a feeling of peace or pleasantness? Relief or calmness

Did you have a feeling of joy? Happiness

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? No

The experience included: Life review

Did scenes from your past come back to you? My past flashed before me, out of my control I do recall virtually my entire 10 years of life experiences passed through my mind. My sense is that this 'information dump' took only a few seconds.

Did scenes from the future come to you? No

Did you come to a border or point of no return? No

God, Spiritual and Religion:


What importance did you place on your religious/spiritual life prior to your experience? Not important to me

What was your religion prior to your experience? Christian- Other Christian Parents were not active in church. attended regurlarly for several years with childhood friend

Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Yes I am working on the correlation between NDEs and the proof of the existence of a God and afterlife.

What importance do you place on your religious/spiritual life after your experience? Greatly important to me

What is your religion now? Christian- Other Christian I am currently active in the community church of local retirement community in NW Florida. I serve as a deacon of finance

Did your experience include features consistent with your earthly beliefs? Content that was entirely consistent with the beliefs you had at the time of your experience

Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes I have recently read many articles/books about NDEs, so I may be influenced by what I have learned in the last 60+ years regarding this topic.

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 I saw my dog.

Did you see deceased or religious spirits? No

Did you encounter or become aware of any beings who previously lived on earth who are described by name in religions (for example: Jesus, Muhammad, Buddha, etc.)? No

During your experience, did you gain information about premortal existence? No

During your experience, did you gain information about universal connection or oneness? No

Did you believe in the existence of God prior to your experience? I was uncertain if God exists

During your experience, did you gain information about the existence of God? No

Do you believe in the existence of God after your experience? God definitely exists

Concerning our Earthly lives other than Religion:


During your experience, did you gain special knowledge or information about your purpose? No

Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Are possibly meaningful and significant

During your experience, did you gain information about the meaning of life? No

Did you believe in an afterlife prior to your experience? An afterlife probably does not exist

Do you believe in an afterlife after your experience? An afterlife definitely exists No

Did you fear death prior to your experience? I moderately feared death

Do you fear death after your experience? I do not fear death

Were you fearful living your life prior to your experience? Not fearful in living my earthly life

Were you fearful living your life after your experience? Not fearful in living my earthly life

Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Are possibly meaningful and significant

Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant after your experience? Are meaningful and significant

Did you gain information about how to live our lives? No

During your experience, did you gain information about life's difficulties, challenges and hardships? No

Were you compassionate prior to your experience? Slightly compassionate toward others

During your experience, did you gain information about love? No

Were you compassionate after your experience? Greatly compassionate toward others

What life changes occurred in your life after your experience? Large changes in my life Hard to say because I'm am 62 yrs. older than when the experience happened.

Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes I believe we are within a very few years of proving and garnering wide acceptance of a belief in a higher power.

After the NDE:


Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes Different world and no sense of time. There was no one that I knew around me. Everything was different and seemed huge. Yet as a young boy I do not recall being afraid of anything.

How accurately do you remember the experience in comparison to other life events that occurred around the time of the experience? I remember the experience more accurately than other life events that occurred around the time of the experience. My memory regarding this NDE has always seemed more acute for some unexplained reason. I am reporting this some 62 years after it occurred.

Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? Yes I have had some psychic experiences in the last 6 months that I may have had prior but did not recognize/identify them as such.

Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? It allows me to be much more receptive to what I now read and study on this topic.

Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes Prior to the past 8 months, I probably shared my experience with less than six people. In the last 8 months, I have shared with perhaps as many as 25 people because of a project that I am working on with the Pastor of my small church.

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 At age 9, my parents had just moved our family from the west coast to the Midwest. I would do anything to look like one of the regular guys. Therefore, if anything, I suppressed it and did not tell any of my peers about my experiences. Perhaps I was even a little frightened about it after I had recovered from my illness.

What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real In the last year, I have read many books and become somewhat of an expert on the topic of NDEs, particularly as it relates to the proof of the existence of God.

At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? No

Is there anything else that you would like to add about your experience? This was many years ago and a relatively simple NDE.