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Diane Sawyer did not interview me: HEAVEN’S GATE and UFOs

I wish I could begin this with:  “It was a dark and stormy night…” .


But I cannot because then I would not have been able to see the main event that is the subject of this blog.


So I must begin it where it began: “En route to breakfast I opened my hotel room door on Friday March 28, 1997, to a beautiful San Diego morning. But my attention was deflected from the ocean view when my foot stepped on.


While I sipped coffee I read the horrors many of you read: cult, mass murders, insane leader, self-castrations, delusionary yet highly intelligent but sad followers…multiple photographs of black shroud-covered bodies with Nike clad feet. 

Still today, twenty-five years later, the story ends there, with the main accusations leveled at the Cult Leaders, the mad insane Bo and Peep, and the sad stories of intelligent kind followers, so needful of direction and a like-minded group for self-esteem that they willingly followed the leaders commands to the ultimate end.


Still today in 2022, as shown in Diane Sawyer’s 20/20 return to this event, the public story ends there.


But Diane Sawyer did not interview me.  Nor any residents of Palm Springs, California.  The story does not where Diane’s story ends. 


I say this because of what I saw two nights later.


I got home from a wine sales-meeting in San Diego and, that Friday evening I had dinner outside on a beautiful, mild evening in the Southern California desert. The sun was setting and quiet reigned. Near my pool I sat with a glass of wine and looked into the evening sky. 


Suddenly what I was looking at came into focus and totally captured my attention.  There, in front of me, above the mountain in front of my house, was the awaited comet.  Hale-Bopp comet that we had read about for months was there. Right there in the sky front of my house.  I ran inside, grabbed my binoculars, and went to stand on a wall near my pool to see better. The coma was brilliant and slightly to my right, arcing over the mountain. And at its far end, closer to me, was the awaited Hale-Bopp.  I subscribe to Astronomy magazine and for the last several issues I had read articles about the comet and its likely path of best visibility. But I had no idea I would have a front row.  The local Desert Sun newspaper had reported that Saturday, March 29, would be the best for viewing the comet.  So when I retuned inside I called a group of friends and invited them to come over around 6 pm the next night for a Hale-Bopp viewing party.


My house was a glass house, with more floor-to-ceiling windows that walls.  The dining room faced the mountains. From inside there at the table, set with a large Champagne bowl filled with ice and bottles of Champagne, my guests would have a nice view. But a far better one waited them both out at the pool to the left, or out the front door where the whole scene opened up as though created for us.  There the mountain was, and over it the arc of the comet was already visible when they arrived. I explained from the experience last night, it would only get better, and that they should stake out their places and prepare to watch the show.  I said I was going to the pool’s wall and any could join me there. Or right out front. Front Row seats at a great show waited.


With my binoculars and a glass of Champagne I took up my post.  One guest joined me. And I heard the others outside the front door laughing and beginning to view the production.  As with the night before, the arc of the comet announced where to look for the comet itself.  Only difference, tonight the view was even more spectacular as the comet came farther into our atmosphere.  And it was even closer to the center of our viewing space.  As before with darkness and passage of even fifteen minutes the show became more and more thrilling.  It became so bright and clear and immediate it looked almost frighteningly as though it would fall into my front garden. The friend next to me went in for more champagne.  And I heard him joking with a few of the others who had also returned inside for refreshments.  It grew darker and more spectacular. I hoped my friends were back out looking. But it was too magnificent for me to leave even for a second to go to tell them.  In the growing darkness the comet and its coma shone as though Hollywood had imagined it.  It was brilliant and arcing down toward us perfectly, nothing to mar the perfection of the show.   But, suddenly directly in front and slightly to my left, my attention deflected by two lights. side-by-side, seemingly far over the mountain but slightly lower than the comet.  So now I had two things to watch, almost parallel; one far brighter and larger, the other less bright and farther, but very interesting to see. What could that be? Two stars of the same magnitude but much dimmer than the Main Attraction.


Now darkness was full on. The sky was blue-black, the perfect foil to show off the brilliance of Hale-Bopp and its fantail coma.  Again, while my binoculars were fastened on the comet, out of the corner of my eye from the area of the two stars, I noticed a sudden sharp glimmer of immense brightness flare.  I switched my focus just intime to see those once dim but interesting two stars, suddenly grow in brilliance, and stunningly, in an instant, shoot forward, toward me.  Two side by side lights grew into brilliant blindingly bright lights shooting toward me. I should have screamed, but I knew if I moved an inch I would not see something I had to see.  They zoomed so swiftly toward me and were so blinding I knew I was a goner.  Then just as suddenly they moved in tandem to the right, and I could now see that they were not stars but lights. Lights on a large vessel. And that vessel flew directly up with such speed that it had reached its goal long before the time it now takes me to write these words. Those two lights at the front of some vessel flew directly into the tail of the comet and were absorbed.


If you think I am kidding, If you think I am mad, Please be my guest. To my disappointment when I ran in to find my friends I found them laughing inside enjoying champagne and sandwiches. None had been outside at that moment.  And I knew no one would believe me. But then, the next day, my neighbor, Nelda Chafin, called to tell me about the strange lights she and her husband had seen fly into the comet.  And a few days later the Desert Newspaper reported a similar story. So I know I was not the only person to see this phenomenon.


Why has no one asked about this?  Why had no one mentioned it? Why does the mystery of Heaven’s Gate cult end with the sad ending of those many bright and kind people being duped into ending likely productive lives because of an evil mad man?  Why does Diane Sawyer just believe and report what our newspaper reported all those years ago?

Heaven’s Gate did not just end as the newspapers of the day reported.  If it did, then what did I see?


Please Dr. Michio Kaku tell me.  Please Dr. de Grasse Tyson tell me.

However, the mysterious Hale Bopp visitor might have a parallel story that I have not mentioned. Yet.


After this experience, On March 30 or 31, 1997, The Desert Sun, and local ABC and CBS TV news programs, began talking about strange lights flying in formation over PYoenix. Arizona, beginning the day of the suicides, 28 March.  These lights were seen by thousands of commuters going home that evening from work.  They flew over the city and over the suburbs and over perhaps as far as Tucson. And this show was repeated for several nights.

TO have both these strange events happening at the same time, and not far from each other, In Phoenix and in Palm Springs, should have merited some sort of investigation.  But what would have been discovered?  That we know so little about our place in the Universe?  We should know that by now.  That what we are told about such sightings is controlled by likely even more ignorant people in charge of Military security, we know. 


Why are we incapable of trying to really discover more?  That we need to form international relations for peaceful studies of cosmology and astronomy we knoiw. And that these groups of scientists should be directed by normal humans, not groups involved in individual nation’s military, we should not only know but we should do something to effect a change.

We should listen seriously to theoretical physicists like Dr. MIchio Kaku who lays it out how we can evolve into a planetary earth society that can control its climate, and erase its carbon usage to zero.  But such an Earth Society has to be a totally international one.

Will we make it in time?  Will we get there before we destroy ourselves in hatred and ignorance?


SO I guess I did begin my story on a dark and stormy night.   OR I am ending it on a dark and stormy night.

April 1 2022.

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