In 1963 my extended family was on a camping trip to Plymouth, Wisconsin. During the trip, the tent we were using caught fire with thirteen women and children inside. In the early morning hour at daybreak, the tent caught fire. My mother, Joanne was the first one out of the tent, knowing children were left in the blazing inferno she went back in and started throwing children out of the fire. Somehow my father found me, was holding me in his arms. My uncle Cleo approached and told us my mother had been killed. The next events were in and out of consciousness.
When I had been thrown out of the fire, I hit a picnic table with my head. Due to the severity of my burns and the head trauma, my father told me in later years that the doctors did not expect me to live. I remember being taken to the X-ray room because the size of the tragedy had overwhelmed the Emergency Room.
I remember then walking with my mother in beautiful light towards a source of Great goodness and Love, just as we were about to be bathed in the Light my mother knelt and hugged me, she told me she Loved me, that it was not my time yet. She then crossed into the Light. I then was looking into a hospital room. I recognized my father and grandmother holding my hands. There was a Pastor or Priest, I don't know which, who was saying Last Rites. A nurse was surprised and exclaimed that I was still with them and coming out of the coma.
My mother and I were very close. I was an only child. We had shared a wonderful life together. My father was rarely in the picture. It is my honest belief that because of the unusually close bond and Love that my mother and I shared, I was allowed to accompany her as she passed into the afterlife. I also, believe this was allowed so I would know she was in a good place.
As the years have passed I have an unusual detailed knowledge of the five years my mother and I spent together. I have had family members tell me there is no way I could remember those things due to the age and short length of time my mother and I spent together.
Date NDE Occurred: 1963
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Accident Other Severely burned with head trauma
Catastrophic fire with the death of my mother and many of my cousins.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Wonderful
The experience included: Out of body experience
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? Normal consciousness and alertness When I was looking into the hospital room.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? When I was looking into the hospital room.
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? No
The experience included: Presence of deceased persons
Did you see any beings in your experience? I actually saw them
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? Yes My mother, who went on to pass into the light.
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? Yes We were bathed in it, my mother, when she turned and left me, walked into its source.
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? No
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Sadness that my mother had left.
Did you have a feeling of peace or pleasantness? Incredible peace or pleasantness
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
The experience included: Special Knowledge
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
The experience included: Boundary
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure? No
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
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Yes I seek the truth of the afterlife.
What is your religion now? Moderate
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes I seek the truth of the afterlife.
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? Yes I knew this place was a source of Love and Goodness.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes I am an extremely devoted father.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Uncertain After my mother was killed in the fire, I just chose to keep it to myself, as if I could keep something of her with me.
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? Yes I can remember my life with my mother in detail.
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? I was allowed to be with my mother at a very significant time of her life.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes
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 probably not real
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real Pieces of the puzzle were missing until recently and my father revealed the circumstances of my birth on his death bed.
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? It has been forty-seven years since my mother passed into the afterlife, it is still a very emotional thing for me to remember and talk about. One would think I would have a deep fear of fire. I do not. I was a firefighter in the Navy.