Date: Tue Feb 01 1994 12:42:36
From: Sheppard Gordon
Subj: Okie Abductions 1/2
Abducted By UFOs!
Sooners Report Close Encounters
THE SUNDAY OKLAHOMAN
Richard Seifried was sound asleep on the lonely Black Mesa in the
Suddenly he awoke to find himself floating out the end of his tent and
up into a spaceship, where he was given a physical exam by short, hairless,
gray-colored beings with fragile necks, long arms and black eyes the size
"I went right through the mosquito netting" without tearing it, he said.
Now for the strange part. Seifried's been snatched like this at least
five other times.
Sometimes the beings beamed him off a mountain while he worked for the
Forest Service. Sometimes they grabbed him from home.
Sometimes they scooped skin samples or poked him with tiny needles in a
Seifried's not alone. As director of investigations for the Oklahoma
chapter of the Mutual UFO Network, Seifried has come across many Oklahomans
who've had uncomfortably close encounters with strange entities from who
Well, that's what they say.
Some who believe in UFOs - in the sense that unidentified flying objects
are advanced aliens from some unknown part of the cosmos - estimate up to
millions of people have been so "abducted."
In Oklahoma, Seifried and his wife, Jean Waller, longtime state director
of the network, know of at least 30 or 40 such people who believe they're
UFOs - in the sense of things in the sky that did not make sense to the
observer - have been around forever, or at least as long as people have had
eyes and a brain big enough to wonder, "What the ...?"
Seifried has written a book, "Native Encounters," about the history of
UFO things in Oklahoma, one of several unpublished manuscripts by the
retired school teacher.
Interest in UFOs seems to run in cycles, but it's been pretty hot since
the early 1950s, when humanoids began building rockets in earnest. Recently,
a congressman succeeded in launching a government investigation into what
believers say was the crash of a flying saucer in New Mexico in 1947 that
was covered up by the same government.
UFO conventions and meetings have boomed in the past decade.
"I'm interested in anything that's unexplained," James Rea, 18, of El
Reno said, explaining why he showed up at a recent network meeting in
Norman. "I don't really know if I believe them (UFOs) or not. I believe
Oklahoma has its share of UFO stuff, network people say. Like animal
carcasses with eyes or sexual organs removed or like circles on rural land
that cows mysteriously avoid, all of which some people attribute to
celestial interlopers for lack of other explanations.
Philip Klass blames it on a kind of extra-terrestrial baloney
sandwich beamed directly into people's brains by tabloids, talk
shows, books and movies. Despite the huge numbers of people who
have seen UFOs or their creators, not one lug nut from an
interplanetary craft has been recovered.
Klass, publisher of the Skeptics UFO Newsletter, said the
National Enquirer offered $1 million and a British liquor magnate
offered about $2.8 million for any hard evidence. Zilch.
Klass is a former senior avionics editor for Aviation Week &
Space Technology magazine and still writes for the magazine. If one
alien visit to Earth could be proven, "It would have been the
biggest story I had ever written. In 28 years I have yet to find
Aside from the elderly woman who died from exposure while
waiting for a spaceship, belief in UFOs had been relatively
harmless, he said. He said most UFO investigators are
well-intentioned people, albeit many with a tendency to avoid
obvious, earthbound explanations.
But this abduction thing, which popped up about 1987, leaves
mild curiosity in the dust.
"It's a UFO abduction cult," says Klass. "This is New Age
"Pretty Crazy" Images
Whatever it is, belief in UFO abduction is seriously disturbing or
moving to those who think they have been chosen or picked on by aliens.
Like Joel and Carilee Delano. For the Choctaw couple and their two young
daughters, it all began on a clear fall night on a South Dakota highway in
1992 on a trip to Montana.
That's where, the parents say, a mysterious craft that had followed them
for miles made its close encounter and "interacted" with the family. On
their living room wall, framed in oak, hang a half dozen enlarged glossy
photos of what they say is the craft, or at least light from it.
What's obvious is only a chunk of roadway, with three dots or
squiggles of light in the darkness.
Joel's brother called MUFON about it. MUFON suggested hypnosis.
And, like many others, the Delanos discovered under this altered
state that they too had been abducted.
Those abducted often have difficulties with their marriages, as
spouses assume they're Lost in Space without a shuttle. It helped
lead to Seifried's divorce from a former wife.
"I thought this is how you felt before you went into the nut
house," Carilee Delano recalls of her first reaction to her
husband's abduction "memory." After accepting it, the Mary Kay
cosmetics representative began viewing the incident "like it was a
"This is getting into the Looney Toons area," Joel said,
worrying about what all this sounds like.
During four sessions of hypnosis, at $35 apiece, Joel recalled: "I felt
a levitation up. I felt I was in a room, foggy, my legs paralyzed."
The construction worker saw beings with large heads, thin necks and
"large black eyes staring at me. Images, images, images," he says, gazing
at the wall as he searches for words.
"In my mind it really happened," he said.
Now the Delanos feel the beings were "obviously corresponding
with us." Although they had no specific message, Joel says since
then he's had a lot of thoughts about evolution and creation. The
Delanos are convinced the aliens have been back. Several times.
"I feel we've had visitations here at the house," Joel said.
Strange things like nightmares and flashes in the sky around
their rural acreage provide clues, they say. That plus hypnosis
that revealed "a being sitting beside my bed," Joel said.
Joel, 43, also figures "I was medically altered" because dizzy
spells and a nagging cough he used to have disappeared.
They fear their daughters are involved in this pattern of
experiments and visits, since they have bad dreams too. "You're
helpless," Carilee, 33, said."Our children probably are genetically
Chana Sue, 9, lacing up sneakers for a basketball game, said she
didn't know what the family saw that night in South Dakota. Her
mother shows a crude drawing Chana Sue did of a pear-shaped craft
with a row of windows on it.
Carilee said that's the craft she saw in a dream. Joel said he
saw that shape while under hypnosis.
Asked how the figure came to her, Chana Sue explained, "That's
always been what I thought they (UFOs) looked like."
Joel's sister once saw an alien in her room in Tulsa and his
mother in Arkansas saw a UFO too.
Emily (not her real name) is another Oklahoman abducted by
aliens. Or who believes she was.
Married with two kids, the 36-year-old maternity nurse recalled
being awakened by a strange red light and noises when she was 7.
She was living in New Hampshire.
Under hypnosis, she further remembered "floating up in a light
with my cousin beside me." She was paralyzed, as beings in the fuzzy
memory "apply pressure to the back of my head" and work with a long
instrument with a ball on the end of it.
During another hypnosis session, she remembered at age 11 waking
to "a dark hand over my face in the middle of the night." She
closed her eyes and prayed, shaking until it was gone. She counts a
total of four alien abductions.
"It's pretty crazy," she says.
Memories or Metaphors
Many have stirred these images with the help of Jean E. Byrne, a
Norman nurse who works in home health care most of the time. Byrne
also is trained in massage and hypnotherapy, studying at the American
Institute of Hypnotherapy and at the Association of Research and
She said the "scariest part" of hypnotherapy on UFO cases is
"when we work with children. They're just terrified." Kids who
apparently have been abducted by aliens have been known to refer to
them as "Big Boy" or "the one who comes ... at night and takes her
to the ball in the sky."
Dr. Vernon Enlow, Oklahoma City psychologist who uses hynposis,
said there is a raging controversy over "created memories," ideas
subtly planted in subjects' minds by hypnotists.
Byrne said she is aware subjects are very receptive to suggestion. And
these days, "there's so much of what we call contamination," that is
reading, hearing or seeing films about aliens then thinking it happened to
them. "You don't know how much of that is real memory," she said.
Enlow said stories elicited under hypnosis aren't necessarily true, even
though subjects believe them and the therapist doesn't suggest them. They
can be "a metaphor" for something else.
"Hypnosis is not a truth serum," he said. "Hypnotism can sometimes
release a lot of creativity." Any therapist who encounters numerous people
believing UFO abductions would cause him to wonder. Wonder is about all
most people do with UFOs.
Tom Renbarger, 42, graphic artist for the state Department of
Transportation, said his interest in UFO stuff is more "a social
"I think it sort of fills a need for some people to have something
supernatural or something to believe in," he said.