I was giving flying instruction in Peru, 900 Km away from our operations center in Lima. Before each flight, we would practice the procedure for ejecting, in case of any emergency. I was fully occupied with the trainee when we went out of control in an 'inverted stripe.' The plane began to drop as it went out of control due to the lack of lift necessary to fly. After dropping to less than 10,000 feet, the list of Emergency Checks states that you should not try to get out of this emergency by trying to recover the flight! EJECT! I ordered the cadet to EJECT! He obeyed me, keeping to the instructions in the manual. At this point everything became very confused. Being in the cockpit dome was the last thing I wanted because I would end up on an unavoidable impact/destruction with the sea and dying. So, I grabbed the ejection handles, pulled them up and found the trigger. I pressed it and initiate the rockets on the back of the seats. The seat shoots out and parachutes away from the plane. Because the plane was out of control, I wasn't able to get my right leg out, and on ejection, I felt a blow on my right leg, and in milliseconds the parachutes opened, but I realised that I couldnt feel my right leg. Both legs were caught in the cords of the chute, with the right foot at my neck. On looking up, I could see why I was falling so much more rapidly than usual. I also saw that the seat had remained tangled up in the cords of the parachute. I managed to untangle my right foot, and unclick the clasps on the parachute before falling into the sea. It all happened so quickly that now I was plunging into the sea. I hadn't had time to warn the control tower that we had ejected.
Everything started to go black while I fought to free myself from the parachute.
The seat had carried me to the bottom of the sea. I started to feel a state of ecstasy and relaxation. It was as if I was coming out of my body and going through an illuminated tunnel. I said mentally, 'MY GOD, WHAT IF I SHOULD DIE FIGHTING? I JUST ASK GIVE ME STRENGTH FOR MY LITTLE CHILDREN.' in a moment, I felt a strong impact on my body at the moment when my soul returned to my body. I felt liberated from the tangle of parachute cords, and again despaired of reaching the surface. I felt like I was drowning and drinking water. Then I started to see the clarity of the surface. I deployed my life jacket. I noted that my fractured femur wasn't exposed. My life jacket was the only one I had. Fortunately, I saw a plane that was circling around and looking for me.
In the distance, I saw a person of 0.5 m in size. I presumed that it must have been a fisherman, because nearby I saw a small cabin. Then I saw a helicopter that descended to talk to this person and it left. This gave me the HOPE THAT MY SEARCH AND RESCUE had been activated. Then a memory came to me, of a scene that I saw on TV. It was a mutilated person with injuries on all four extremities, wearing trunks and peacefully swimming two lengths of a large swimming pool. He said to me mentally, 'EVEN THOUGH I ONLY HAVE MY TWO HANDS AND A FOOT, I CAN SWIM TO THE BEACH AND NOT WAIT IN THE WATER while swimming, in spite of the PAIN AND COLD OF THE WINTER. I was also PRAYING FOR MORE STRENGTH TO GET TO THE BEACH.
I remembered what had happened to the Argentinian pilots that I had read about to resist the low temperatures, they urinated to heat part of the stomach to avoid hypothermia. I had to occupy my mind and orientate myself geographically where I would have to go. I thought about how I would have to put a splint on my right leg, or move to a nearby place where there may be a fishermans village where I could get help. I had to grit my teeth in the low temperature as it affected me, so I would not bite my tongue. I was about 500 metres or less, and I again saw someone with something red, signalling with his hands. I was tired from swimming after 3-1/2 hours. I was physically exhausted, and he made a signal to me that he had seen me, but he didn't come help. I thought that he wasn't coming because of the strong tide or the cold water, so I kept swimming until I reached dry land. I tried to jump out, taking advantage of the height of the waves. But when the waves returned, they caused me to fall and roll. I was about to try again when I saw a rescue helicopter arriving. It started to descend with rescuers. I said to them, 'RESCUE ME CAREFULLY, I HAVE A BROKEN LEG.' As I shouted, I realised that the right leg had completely rotated 180 degrees from normal. The first thing I said was, 'Have you found the cadet? How is he?' His reply was, 'Yes, we found him and he is OK.'
My conscience made me happy because I had saved a life. They gave me an shot for the pain and took me to the hospital. It took a whole year to fully recover, since I had three more operations.
The most important thing for me was that I HAD SAVED A LIFE!
Date NDE Occurred: 8/26/1988
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Accident Life threatening event, but not clinical death
Upon ejecting from the plane, I severed my right femur. I was still attached to the material of the parachute as I fell into the sea and then sank down.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Both pleasant AND distressing
Did you feel separated from your body? Yes I relived my existence in milliseconds. Then I felt my family very close. I felt my mother and children that were sad.
I clearly left my body and existed outside it
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. These states of consciousness are much more sensitive while in this trance. Sometimes, it is inexplicable.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? In the trance between life and death.
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.
Everything becamed confused, like everything was happening at once. It was as if losing the sense of time or that time didnt exist.
Were your senses More vivid than usual? Incredibly more vivid
Please compare your vision during the experience to your everyday vision that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I was amazed and astonished as I saw everything happening from this brilliant tunnel. It was a chord that unites my soul with the body.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I was deaf from the pressure exerted on my ears when I was sinking into the sea.
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere, as if by ESP? Yes, and the facts have been checked out
The experience included: Passing into or through a tunnel
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Yes It is like walking through a time tunnel as they would describe it in films.
Did you see any beings in your experience? No
The experience included: Darkness
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? No
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? No
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Of peace ecstasy, tranquillity, after an initial silence.
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? No
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
Did scenes from the future come to you? No
Did you come to a border or point of no return? I came to a definite conscious decision to return to life. I asked GOD to come back to life because I had two young children and a wife. It was my responsibility that I had promised under God, to raise them and to make them into good human beings.
God, Spiritual and Religion:
What importance did you place on your religious/spiritual life prior to your experience? Moderately important to me
What was your religion prior to your experience? Christian- Catholic. For me, I would say it was a miracle to survive this accident.
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? No
What importance do you place on your religious/spiritual life after your experience? Greatly important to me
What is your religion now? Christian- Catholic. I have read the Bible since childhood. In the hospital, I asked for my Bible and opened it. It opened to Psalm 116 and 118 that I considered was related to what had happened. I mentioned to the priest, another official of high rank, who was in the same room as me in the hospital.
Did your experience include features consistent with your earthly beliefs? Content that was both consistent and not consistent with the beliefs you had at the time of your experience. In spite of reading the Bible, I have always had questions. I have wondered, researched, and read much on spirituality, metaphysics, esotericism, religions on the life of Jesus, Buddha, and Mohammed. But, I have lived in another dimension of reality that is relatively unknown.
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes It changes the way I live my life with greater expectations as to what happens and in what I do.
Did you seem to encounter a mystical being or presence, or hear an unidentifiable voice? No
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? Yes I am convinced that there is universal connection and oneness.
Did you believe in the existence of God prior to your experience? God definitely exists
During your experience, did you gain information about the existence of God? Yes Apart from reading the Bible, I believe in the existence of a SUPERIOR GOD, CREATOR OF EVERYTHING that lives in each of us. The religions have given him a name but I am convinced that he is the only one, just with different names.
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 probably meaningful and significant
During your experience, did you gain information about the meaning of life? Yes
Did you believe in an afterlife prior to your experience? An afterlife probably exists
Do you believe in an afterlife after your experience? An afterlife definitely exists Yes I think so. My experience corroborates that we are a soul in a body having a human experience.
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? Moderately 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 probably 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? Moderately 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 I have become more Spiritual than religious; more compassionate and sensitive.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes I have more feelings. I understand more. I like TO HELP WITHOUT ANY SELF-INTEREST.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes For those woh didn't believe in miracles, it is hard to explain. A friend who was an EVANGELICAL CHRISTIAN asked me to tell him my story before the congregation in his church. Another asked a Psychology Professor if I could tell it in the FACULTY OF PSYCHOLOGY at the university where he teaches.
How accurately do you remember the experience in comparison to other life events that occurred around the time of the experience? I do not know how my remembrance of the experience compares to my remembrance of other life events. For example on 28th January 1981 during an armed conflict on the Northern border of Peru and Ecuador. I was the first to open fire with rockets and machine guns in territories invaded by Ecuadorean troops. I remember hundreds of missiles firing at me. At that moment, I didn't just feel adrenaline. We went into air to air combat, with an Ecuadorean plane, and he managed to fire on me. But on returning to our base, I saw three holes, of anti-aircraft artillery from elements on the ground. Although I remember the sight of all the personnel, Officials Technicians, and Sub-officials and Civil workers, coming up to the plane to see, the only evidence of was having been in a hot conflict zone. I was left speechless, in between a small trance just between reality and fiction.
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? Yes A friend said to me that I have a certain mastery of the third eye.
There he was, watching TV. As I slept, I was aware of the presence of someone in the room. The lights were switched off and there was only the TV switched on. I saw the nurse who was monitoring me. It seemed strange to me that she hadn't touched the bed, nor turned on the bedroom light. Then I saw it. I realised that I wasn't looking at the legs or of the knees from below. On arriving at the bed legs, it disappeared. The entity vanished into nothing. My body shot bolt upright. To hear this story, the priest replied that all of us have a guardian angel that is always at our side.
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? I appreciate life more and give thanks every moment for a new awakening. I live and enjoy life without causing any damage to anyone.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes As I said in an Evangelical Christian church, a year and a half later, they were very amazed as if I was a miracle from God. Then I talked at Faculty of Psychology and they were equally astonished with my experience and how I had recovered.
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. It was indescribable and immeasurable at the same time.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real. Nobody better than the one who has had this experience would know how to describe it. I am left lost for words, to describe in it everything that I have felt or have seen.
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? I can see that I am not the only one who has had this experience and it is nice to meet so many people that can understand what they have seen.
Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? Right now I think that you haven't covered the totality of it in the questions, I am just pleased to have the opportunity that comes with telling you something real and that it was me that it happened to.