Douglas H's Experience
June 23, 2014
Dear Jeffrey Long, MD:
I just purchased your book and would like to share my story with you. I am not sure that it meets with the Near Death Experience scientific criteria fully as per your description of activity or not. However as an educated Bio-Health Research Psychologist (i.e., 28-year Self-Study, Criminology, and Psychology degreed) researcher having originally initiated with the molecular sciences, "Decade of the Brain and Human Genome Project (1986)," and later Molecular Immunology (1988) as they are studied today in highly developed modems, I would like to explain what happened to my brother and I, when we both went under surgery for a tonsillectomy at Sparrow Hospital in Lansing, Michigan (1954). I was 5-years old and his age was 9.
When we went into the hospital I had a very keen sense of presence. I knew I was in Sparrow hospital where my mother had worked, and I knew that we were on the third floor. It was around the first of the year, ice and snow were evident on the ground looking out from my window. We listened to those old silver colored radios attached our beds that cost a dime to play. I remember listening to the "Green Hornet" and "The Lone Ranger." When I ran out of dimes, I played the nurses for dimes. However, I kept the dimes and just listed to my brother's radio thereafter. The reason I say all of this is that it is as clear to me 60-years later, as is my clarity with experiences in Vietnam as a Combat Medic (68-69). As for Vietnam, I also can remember exact dates and events as the unfolded.
In Sparrow hospital, I knew that I was there for an operation and that I would be sleeping during it. And, I was very sensitive to the events that took place in talking with the doctors and nurses on my way to the operating table. They already had the light above me turned on as they took me off my bed and laid me on the operating table. The surgeon, mask on; all, had on masks there were four people plus one who was sitting down with black cup in his hand. He had glasses on with dark hair, and so did the surgeon. He spoke to me (telling me exactly) that, "The man holding the black cup is going to place it over your nose. It has a smell that will help you go to sleep. I need you to help by taking a good sized breath and then relaxing, can you do that for me?" I replied, "Yes." As the cup was placed over my nose he said, "This is a little bit of gas called ether. Now take a good deep..." At that moment the smell scared me and I was so frightened that I started kicking, and thrashing about." The next moment I was floating in the air like I was flying, but I was in a dark tunnel with what appeared to be as brightly colored bricks. I was fully conscious, with no fear, knew that I had just been in a fight for my life with the doctor and staff, but now everything was absolutely serene, my mind was as if it were an adult mind and not a child. I was actively observing in total comfort, confidently, without any fear. As I started to move forward the brick with fascinating bright colors in a very dark tunnel started to blur together and I realized right away that I was traveling not at a very tremendous speed toward a brilliant round highly yellow more toward gold colored object that radiated pure white, and I wanted more than anything to get to it to explore it thoroughly. At the precise moment that I was closing in on it, suddenly there was a very sharp turn to the right, and the next thing I knew was that my grandmother (alive, breathing, and physically there in the hospital room) with me, telling me that, "Its going to be ok honey" as pain and nausea set in. Then, I started vomiting and she told me to, "Try and suck on a red popsicle, baby."
The most important thing here is that I was not in a dream state in that tunnel. I was alert and everything happening was crystal clear. I also felt very strong and could feel my whole body was intact. I also was still wearing my white hospital nightgown. One last thing. My eyes saw objects more clearly than I have ever been able to see them while alive on earth. My glasses today are a very strong as I am able to see things up close, but have always not been able to see anything clearly at a distance. I did not have glasses until almost out of high school, and never knew (never was tested) until the 11th grade, and my eyesight has diminished minimally over the years from that initial test.
Last year, when I discussed what had happened to me with my brother Edwin, we had never once discussed these events until then throughout our lives. He had to be taken back into the operating room and they feared that they might not be able to get the bleeding stopped. He stated that he experienced a different and far more frightening activity. He was being chased by some black furry "things" and could not really describe them in detail. He said they were grabbing at him, trying to claw him. He remembered the claws were long and pointed. He was very aware of the tunnel, but that it was pitch dark with a faint light at the end. He also was clearly aware that his body was intact, his knowledge level was adult like, and that he was floating at a very high speed. When he came out of though, he couldn't speak, and was extremely tired and very pale. They were trying to keep him from vomiting for quite a while thereafter. My grandmother and I witnessed all of it in the hospital room. The doctors rushed in and rushed him out when it all happened. I looked over at it, but was still too sick to care much.
I cannot tell you that I have not been scared about death after that, because in Vietnam in 1968-69, I witnessed and worked on life and death situations very closely. But I can tell you that I had an incident on a military train heading from Missouri to Fort Sam Houston in July of 1968 to Fort Sam Houston, Texas. I had been drafted and had just completed basic training at Fort Leonard Wood, and I was feeling like a "pig going to the slaughter" and that it was payback for not doing the best productively that I could have in high school. I graduated, but not with honors, and honestly not with too much to spare in the success category. So I was going over the "poor me, poor soul" aspects of my life and the situation I was in. I knew that I was destined to die in Vietnam, because I was not too smart to outsmart the enemy. While I went onto the deck between passenger cars to think things over, it was near dusk, a man in a old dark black suit, white shirt, and thick black tie came in from the car adjacent from mine and we started a conversation. He was in an old 1940s dark brim suit hat (i.e., the best I can describe it) and we stood there while I opened up about my fears. I also remember that the train was rally crowded in my car, so I would surmise the same held true in the car he had come from. But, we talked for easily two hours and the light was nearly gone, and suddenly he reached into his pocket and pulled out a dollar and placed it into my shirt. He said, "I want you to know that someone wants you to come home." I protested and wanted to give his dollar back to him, but he would not accept it back from me. Minutes later we parted, and as I looked back he had disappeared from sight, and his door did not open at all, as I was opening mine. That was very strange, and all during our conversation, not one person came onto the passenger deck or passed through our compartment. Not one. My two best friends, Mike Harold Flood (Toledo, IL) and John Edward Lutze (Flint, MI), both U.S. Army Combat Medics, who chummed around Fort Sam and San Antonio with me, were both killed during hostilities, and both received a Silver Star w/Valor medal. I was in very heavy fighting in Khe Sanh, Ashau Valley, DMZ, L.Z. Nancy, and many other areas with an APC Unit (1/61st Infantry (Mechanized) and came eyeball-to-eyeball with a NVA regiment in the very early morning hours of April 28, 1969. We were being overrun about four hours into the firefight, and the command was given to retreat. I and Philip White (both Combat Medics) had to hold off the enemy alone with no one with us other than 38 wounded and dead casualties of our unit. We were going to die, without doubt. The enemy had crossed into our parameter as we were firing at them. I was scared beyond reason, but all the time something kept telling me that it was going to be ok, that we were safe, and then my HS fight song started to play over and over in my brain (i.e., similar to Notre Dame's fight song). Without warning someone yelled to us, keep your heads down, and then the Air Force's "Spooky" sprayed the battleground to our front and the battle was over. I had at least 18 similar situations that were extremely close, but felt wholly protected. Years later, when facilitating an addicted persons group session in Sacramento, for a company known as the Mi Casa Residential Treatment Center, suddenly I was caught by memory of the man on the train. I had been saying at the end of each session, "I want you all to come home!'
With the molecular sciences, I have also developed a hypothesis about the 4th level of plasma, and the soul. I invite you to have me explain it one day should you be interested in discussing it. Bio-Health Research Psychology is basically the study of how microbes, chemicals, and human cellular function are interdependent for healthy mental, emotional, and physical life-forms to survive. My theory is that our human form of plasma (i.e., cosmic, not liquid form; a gas that gives off properties of a gas, but is not a gas, containing a positive and negative charge, and dependent on magnetic energy to exist) along with waves internal to the brain and external (e.g., perhaps a foreign type other than UV, FM, AM, etc.) yet undiscovered or even part of those mentioned provide the substance for a soul to actually exist. It has taken me 28-years to come to this believe based on the molecular sciences and genetics re; storage of memory within cellular bio-chemical activity.
Anyway, I thought I would tell you what happened to me, and why I subscribe to life after earth/physical earth.
God Bless and take care. I am excited to receive your book to find you excellent research.
Douglas R. Haney
At the time of your experience was there an associated life-threatening event? Uncertain I was on the operating table for the first time in my life having my tonsils removed. At the moment ether was applied, I felt extremely threatened and scared. At the point of sedation, I was in a tunnel fully alert to the fact that I had just had the fight of my life with doctors and nurses. Suddenly I felt all of that totally lifted and my body felt complete as I started to float through a completely dark tunnel with brightly colored bricks that seemed to glow with brilliance as my soul (I felt whole/physically complete and mentally alert but knowing that I was not in a physical body. As I started to move faster at a super speed toward a very bright yellowish-gold circle of light with radiant white flowing around which seemed to be expanding, I felt no fear at all. My mind's thought processing was as if I were an adult with adult sentences and language talking to me or to myself. The bricks were now mere brilliant mixed colors, and that is how I determined that I was traveling (floating) at a very high and strong rate of speed, but I was totally comfortable with it. I can't recall any of my nightly dreams, but I can still see all of this in my memory (i.e., mind's eye) over 60-years later. It was absolutely clear reality.
Was the experience difficult to express in words?....No....N/A
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness?....More consciousness and alertness than normal It was a constant alertness and consciousness, and I was even shocked suddenly when I was suddenly removed from this sensational adventure, and my grandmother Vivian F. Sommer, was there at the front of my hospital bed (alive in person on earth at Sparrow Hospital) telling me that everything was going to be ok. I know I gave her a startled look, and then I started to vomit. It was then that she had me try to suck on a popsicle. I kept wanting to go back to that warm and comfortable experience, but I was now very sick for the next couple of hours.....My mind was as if it were my adult leading me through this sensational experience and I was fully aware of a body, but not a physical one that was able to fly without wings. I also was fully aware of the hospital gown that was covering me. It was still there. I felt clothed. I had absolutely no fear, but realized that I had just come through a kicking, screaming, fighting situation at the operating table. I was always going forward with no hindsight.
Please compare your vision during the experience to your everyday vision that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I wear glasses and did not know that I had needed them from near infancy. I always had trouble seeing the black board at school, but thought that it was because I always preferred to sit way away from the teachers. I had a terrible lack of confidence, and had been beaten by my second grade teacher, so I did not like teachers at all (with extremely few exceptions) throughout my school years.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. Everything in that tunnel was pure unobstructed silent. Not one sound, but my mind speaking to me in a very calm and precise manner.
The question below #10 asks if I felt separated from my body. I knew my body was completely intact, but it was not there. I could feel it, but my sense of no body was very clear as I looked at my arms as I was moving, they had form but were not present... there, had outer form, but invisible to me, see through. So, I am answering, No.
Did you see or hear any earthly events that were occurring during a time that your consciousness / awareness was apart from your physical / earthly body? No
What emotions did you feel during the experience?....Comfortable, joyous experience, bewildering and fascinating, wanting to explore it all, and when suddenly brought back to the hospital and alive, I felt totally disappointed that I had broken away from it. However, I was also starting to vomit and feeling throat pain and nausea. Couldn't talk for awhile thereafter.
Did you pass into or through a tunnel?....Yes....See my written account in Question #2 & #4.
Did you see an unearthly light?....Yes....See Question #2 & #4.
Did you seem to encounter a mystical being or presence, or hear an unidentifiable voice?....No I thought the voice was within my mind, that it was like an adult me. Like I speak and listen today. However, on April 28, 1969 in Khe Sanh, Vietnam at about 1:00am, I was sleeping very soundly and suddenly a very strong and confident voice said simply "Doug!" That was it, and nothing else. It was not my inner mind's voice. It was totally foreign from that. I immediately was startled to the awake position. Everything was absolutely quiet, and not anyone was awake around me. Within a very few (i.e., 2-3) minutes all hell broke loose and we were in a major battle with the NVA. Men were on fire from enemy satchel charge explosions that destroyed our APC vehicles, and there is much more to this whole story, but suffice to say, I was (felt) totally protected, yet fully exposed to the enemy weapons fire.
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings?....No
Did you become aware of past events in your life during your experience?....No....
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world?....No....
Did time seem to speed up or slow down?....Time seemed to go faster or slower than usual....Time in the tunnel sped up. First very slow because I was able to realize all around me (i.e., very brightly colored bricks (and very dark bricks or wall that I couldn't see, and the colored bricks were spaced all around the sides and over the tunnel roof area. I do not remember seeing any colored bricks or anything when I peered down, just on the walls and overhead. But things sped up to a speed that it was impossible to observe them any longer as bricks but mixed in passing colors. Real fast to a blur.
Did you suddenly seem to understand everything?....Everything about myself or others....Everything about myself and the experiences at hand, but not about any others.
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure?....Yes....It all came to a sudden sharp turn back to reality in the hospital before reaching the bright golden yellow light with white. In fact, I never came close to it when the return to life occurred. I was disappointed by that; really disappointed.
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....
Did scenes from the future come to you?....No....
Did you have a sense of knowing special knowledge or purpose?....Yes....That was highly noticeable the moment I entered into the tunnel and realized that my body was not present, but my mind and transparent body was fully there.
Discuss any changes that might have occurred in your life after your experience:....Large changes in my life....In 1986 I became involved with the newest sciences under the umbrella of the "Decade of the Brain" while working as a Sr. Writer for America's Space Shuttle Team at Vandenberg AFB, CA, and the Kennedy Space Center, in Florida. In the 28-years since, I have been involved with informal and formal research into the Human Genome Project, Human Immunology Project, Molecular Biology, and Bio-Environmental Psychology. In the college sector, I taught Human Addiction studies before retiring in 2011. It his new world of science the miracle of molecular sciences has given us new factual understandings about ourselves and how the brain, body, human emotion mechanisms (esp., memory retention) give way to human soul and spiritual connections that are definitely in and around us but that have not fully given up their secrets to human science. The fact that I have placed my belief, faith, and now my clear understanding that God and Jesus do/did exist, and are involved in what we are discovering scientifically in various disciplines as studies in and external of science are educating us intellectually. My own experience in that tunnel demonstrated clearly to me that there is an existence beyond our earthly and intellectual dimensions that I must keep and open-mind to accept. I went through something really strange and foreign to me at a very early stage in my life, that I couldn't explain, but it was enough to give me an understanding that death is not what it seems, and something enriching is in that tunnel to somewhere interesting and intriguing. In conjunction, with this, the New Testament has given me much to weigh as to what it all really is. The Man was totally honest, truthful, and walked the talk, so to speak.....
Did you have any changes in your values or beliefs after the experience that occurred as a result of the experience? Yes The experience has left me questioning and wanting to research all that I can toward unraveling the correlations that are part of it.
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience?....Yes Just off and on intuitions that have come to me periodically in life.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes Only recently (within the last year) with my brother Edwin who was in Sparrow Hospital with me, for the same reason, and experienced a totally different scenario. I felt it was something special, but I didn't want to be made fun of by my siblings during my earlier years of life.
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 was fully aware of my surroundings, sensations, and situations. I have been in surgery several times in life after that, and I have never had another experience close to it since.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience at the current time:....Experience was definitely real....
Have your relationships changed specifically as a result of your experience?....Yes....
Have your religious beliefs/spiritual practices changed specifically as a result of your experience?....Yes
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience?....No Only what I specified in #2.
Did the questions asked and information that you provided accurately and comprehensively describe your experience? Yes
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? The experience; a gift, later in life left me with an unquenchable thirst to research and evaluate more.Is there anything else that you would like to add about your experience?....None