09-May-88 09:07 EDT Sb: APn 05/06 2057 Alien Abductions Copyright, 1988. The Associated Pr

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09-May-88 09:07 EDT Sb: APn 05/06 2057 Alien Abductions Copyright, 1988. The Associated Press. All rights reserved. By BRIAN MURPHY Associated Press Writer BOSTON (AP) -- Joann Berte swears she was paralyzed by three-fingered aliens and taken aboard their spaceship. Marianne Shenefield, who claims to have twice encountered extraterrestrials, said people who have seen them have an aura. Their stories are likely to be heard in dozens of variations this weekend at a conference in Waltham expected to draw more than 250 UFO experts and people who claim to have been abducted by extraterrestrials. "I was immobilized. I couldn't move and I didn't think to speak. I just watched," said Berte of a warm night on Dec. 10, 1979, when she says she was awakened on a friend's porch in Rhode Island and carried in a paralyzed state aboard an alien spacecraft. Berte tells of observing a small, three-fingered alien in an incubator and being brought to a glass-enclosed platform overlooking a table where her friend lay with a tube extending from her navel. "It makes you very angry," said Berte. "They don't ask your permission. They just take you away." Arthur Myers, a conference coordinator and member of a church group interested in the paranormal, said the gathering is one of the first public meetings of people claiming to have had close encounters of the third kind. "It reminds me a lot of alcholism or homosexuals coming out of the closet," said Myers. "There's a stigma attached to the abductees. But once someone comes forward with their story, others are willing to speak." Marianne Shenefield of Agawam is one of those yearning to let people know about her two experiences. Thirty-five years ago, she was an 11-year-old girl building a tree house in Agawam on a July afternoon. "Then I turned around and there was what I thought was a little boy in a scuba outfit," said Shenefield. "Then I felt this floating sensation and the next thing I knew I was in this round craft." Shenefield said the aliens put her under an X-ray device and she was observed by several aliens, who tried to communicate with her by a sound-making unit. In 1972, Shenefield said, a female-like alien captured her outside her home and brought her into a small compartment. Shenefield said she was released hours later, dazed but unharmed. A degenerative eye disorder has reduced her sight to dim shadows and bold streaks of light. But the ailment enables her to see auras, she said. "I can immediately detect someone who has been abducted," she said. "They are surrounded by an indescribable color. Believe me, I can tell." Author Ray Fowler said about 80 percent of all UFO sightings can be explained. "But there are those instances that defy any explanation," said the former Air Force intelligence officer, a keynote speaker at the conference Saturday. "It's imperative that we study these things with an open mind, not gullibly accept them or reject them out of hand. There are too many people who come forward with nothing to gain and everything to lose." Fowler, whose book "The Andreasson Affair" describes a family's encounter with aliens, said he became interested in UFOs after seeing flying discs in 1947. He is director of the Mutual UFO Network, an international group that documents UFO sightings.

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