Did Amelia etch her name in prison cell food door?

July 31, 2015

Whenever the discussion turns to the subject of the possible existence of “hard evidence” of Amelia Earhart’s presence on Saipan or the Marshall Islands, the metal door from the Garapan prison (or jail) with the provocative etching that suggests Amelia Earhart herself was the author is often mentioned.

In With Our Own Eyes: Eyewitnesses to the Final Days of Amelia Earhart (2002), written with much help from Thomas E. Devine, we introduce a fascinating object that captured the imagination of Earhart fans, at least for a time. Since this potential evidence, if confirmed as legitimate, would have placed Earhart and Fred Noonan on Saipan, the public was never informed about it by our trusted media.

In May 1994, Deanna Mick, of Arlington, Kansas, contacted Devine about an artifact that had recently come into her possession. Deanna and her husband had established an air charter service at Saipan’s International Airport in 1978, flying the neighboring islands in a single-engine 180 Cessna.

When they decided to return to the United States several years later, a former employee and one of their best friends, Ramon San Nicholas, presented her with a small steel door, 7-by-8 inches and about a quarter-inch thick, with broken hinges on one side and a hasp on the other. On one side of the door is this inscription:

July 29 1937                                                                                                                                                                                                           A. Earhart

The 7-by 8-inch steel door through which food may have been passed to Amelia Earhart while she was held prisoner in Garapan Prison, Saipan, in 1937. Thomas E. Devine observed this door and various inscriptions on the prison wall during the American invasion of Saipan in 1944. The door was retrieved by a native islander on Saipan, and is now in the possession of Deanna Mick, a pilot who co-owned an inter-island charter service from Saipan. (Photo courtesy of Deanna Mick, circa 1994.)

The 7-by 8-inch steel door through which food may have been passed to Amelia Earhart while she was held prisoner in Garapan Prison, Saipan, in 1937. Thomas E. Devine observed this door and various inscriptions on the prison wall during the American invasion of Saipan in 1944. The door was retrieved by a native islander on Saipan, and is now in the possession of Deanna Mick, a pilot who co-owned an inter-island charter service from Saipan. (Photo courtesy of Deanna Mick, circa 1994.)

“Ramon said the door came from the Japanese prison on Saipan, and that it was used to pass food and other articles to and from the cell,” Mick wrote, and enclosed a photograph of the door. In a subsequent letter she told Devine that Ramon died in 1986, and that she had no idea when the door was taken from the jail.

Ramon felt Deanna should have the door, Mick recalled, since she was the only woman pilot to fly the Marianas since Amelia Earhart. Ramon said he received it from a cousin on Saipan, who was positive Earhart was in the Garapan jail during the time indicated on the door, and that the etching came from her own hand.

Devine wrote to Mick, asking permission to conduct tests to determine when this inscription was made on the door. After his second letter, Mick responded, saying she would like to certify that the door came from the Garapan jail on Saipan, but she was not interested in giving up the door at that time. She enclosed a sheet of paper with a pencil tracing of the door, telling Devine, “The hinges are broken off and if the other part of the broken hinges are still on the cell at Saipan, which they could very well be, it would certify its authenticity.”

Devine believed the inscription may be authentic, and offered to pay Mrs. Mick for temporary custody of it. He would then have tests made to establish the approximate date of the inscription. When the tests were completed, he would return the door. “If a forensic test establishes an approximate date coinciding with the year of the Earhart disappearance, and with Mrs. Mick’s permission, I shall then compare this small door with the opening in the bars of the jail cell I had entered in 1944,” Devine wrote.

Mick told Devine she was leery of writing to anyone on Saipan about the door or of taking it to Saipan herself. “I am afraid the information could fall into the wrong hands and the door possibly confiscated — or worse,” she wrote. “Simply put, I don’t know anybody on Saipan at this time I would trust. Especially not the government.”

This is the inside of the cell at Saipan's old Garapan prison that is said to have been occupied by Amelia Earhart. Former Marine and Saipan veteran Henry Duda took it during his visit to Saipan for the 50th anniversary of the historic 1944 Battle of Saipan.  Note the larger square area at the bottom center of the barred window, which is where the food door was located.

The inside of the cell at Saipan’s old Garapan prison that is said to have been occupied by Amelia Earhart. Former Marine and Saipan veteran Henry Duda took it during his visit to Saipan for the 50th anniversary of the historic 1944 Battle of Saipan. Note the larger square area at the bottom center of the barred window, which is where the food door was located.

In an undated letter than appeared in the November 1997 edition of Bill Prymak’s Amelia Earhart Society Newsletter, Mick described the basic history of the door, much as she had with Devine. She also sent Prymak a tracing of the artifact, and urged him to “send the picture to your man on Saipan. I would be interested to know if there is even a possibility of a match on Garapan.”

In the same November 1997 AES Newsletter, Prymak reported that AES member Bill Stewart, who resided on Saipan, “was given exact dimensions of the pass door, and a personal visit by Stewart to the GARAPAN PRISON confirms the size; it fits perfectly!”

The  door and its inscription prompted Devine to recall other details of his visit to the Garapan jail in 1944, further increasing the probability of the door’s authenticity. “I must report this,” even though I may be called a storyteller, or my veracity may be impugned,” Devine wrote in his unpublished manuscript, “The Concealed Grave of Amelia Earhart,” circa spring 1995.

On many occasions I have glanced at the photo of the door submitted by Deanna Mick. It has stirred my memory, and I do recall a door of that type on the bars of the cell that I had entered. As I lifted myself from the depth of the jail-cell floor, and grasped the swinging iron gate, I observed a few dark numbers on the dark metal opening. I believe this may be a coincidence, therefore I am seeking through Deanna Mick the names, addresses and any information that may ascertain that this may have been retrieved from the same cell.

“If this can be verified,’ Devine continued, “I am willing to visit the cellblock on Saipan to certify the door hinge matches the opening of the cell. This would establish another certainty: that Amelia Earhart was imprisoned in a filthy unsanitary cell on the island of Saipan.”

The smaller of the two Garapan prison cellblocks, often reserved for “special” prisoners and females, according to some reports, where several witnesses reported that Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan were held after their arrival on Saipan in July 1937.  (Courtesy Tony Gochar.)

The smaller of the two Garapan prison cellblocks, often reserved for “special” prisoners and females, according to some reports. Several witnesses reported that Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan were held in this building after their arrival on Saipan sometime in the summer of 1937. (Courtesy Tony Gochar.)

The food door evoked another revelation by Devine concerning his 1944 visit to the Garapan jail, another piece of the puzzle he kept to himself, hoping that someday he might testify before Congress in a investigation aimed at getting to the truth in the Earhart case.  Devine’s recollection continues:

Since Deanna Mick has brought forth her artifact, perhaps I should no longer withhold what I had observed in the first cell from where we had entered the prison block, while investigating the pungent odor in 1944.

In 1944, after having climbed up to the walkway of the cellblock with the pungent odor, I looked into the first cell and was very surprised at the depth of the cell, perhaps six feet down from the walkway. Facing directly into the cell, and about two feet from the dirt floor, were two letters on the wall.

They were not Japanese letters, but they were English letters, an F and an N. They were very bright red, which I thought may have been paint. But where would a prisoner get paint? Since this was a Japanese prison, the English letters seemed out of place. If the letters had been placed there by a serviceman, he would usually include his rank, except of course when it was designated that “Kilroy was here.”

Deanna Mick

Deanna Mick

In 1944 I was fully aware of the presence of Amelia Earhart’s airplane on the island of Saipan, and assumed this incident was a top government matter and none of my business whatsoever. I never for a moment thought that Amelia Earhart had been a prisoner of the Japanese, and the name of her navigator had been relegated to secondary publication over a period of years. I never for a moment connected the letters “F N” to Fred Noonan, in 1944.

Since I did not go down into this cell, I am unaware of any additional lettering that may have been placed upon the wall below the iron grating, unseen by the Japanese guards. It is quite possible that the lettering may have been blood, sustained by an injury, or it may have been a finger rubbing against the wall to induce bleeding. Rain would produce a dripping effect, and over a period of time perhaps eliminate the letters. That is, if it were blood. At any rate, the letters appeared to be finger width, and about four inches high.

Of course the investigation that Devine dearly hoped would shine the spotlight on his extraordinary experiences on Saipan never happened, and is unlikely to happen in our lifetimes, or anyone’s lifetimes, for that matter, barring some kind of a miraculous intervention.  That’s the view from here, anyway.

As for the metal door, though it remains a unique curiosity, there’s no way to determine who actually did the etching, or even when it was done. “Whether Amelia did the etching or someone sympathetic to her plight,” Mick wrote to Prymak circa 1997, “I would have no way of knowing, nor do I think does anyone else.”

In a recent e-mail,  Mick said there’s “nothing new for me to add to the information you already have about the door. It is such a unique item though and keeps us asking, ‘What if?'”  


Daily Mail sets new “standard” in Earhart reporting

July 17, 2015

Now that we’ve spent a few weeks at Garapan Prison in search of disembodied spirits, discarnate entities and other manifestations of the paranormal, it’s time we get back to the business of the disappearance and search for Amelia Earhart.

Some readers might be aware of the recent series of three stories, replete with huge photo layouts, published in the well-known United Kingdom tabloid, the Daily Mail presenting the Mili Atoll-Endriken Islands discoveries that Dick Spink, of Bow, Washington and his associates have made during several searches of the remote location over the past four years. 

I published the first of three pieces focusing on Spink’s finds here on Nov. 25, 2014, on the heels of the Oct. 31 Kansas City Star story, Has the key to Amelia Earhart’s disappearance in the Pacific been found in Kansas?”  For those who might have missed those postings, they’re linked here,Recent find on Mili Atoll called “Concrete proof”, here,  “Update to ‘Recent find on Mili’ story and here, New Mili search uncovers more potential evidence.

Now that you’re up to speed on my support for Spink’s work on this blog, I’ll continue with my comments about what would normally be a positive development, i.e., a major publication offering aspects of the Earhart truth to a massive audience — unheard of in U.S. media– but the way the Daily Mail has presented these stories is too disturbing for me take much satisfaction.

Artifacts: These are other pieces of metal found on Mili. Most have been discounted as not coming from Earhart's plane, but the long piece of metal on the left may be significant and is being tested Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3153107/I-know-saw-saw-lady-Revealed-Pacific-islanders-insist-Amelia-Earhart-taken-prisoner-Japanese-crashing-remote-atoll.html#ixzz3fp9ttoW2  Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

These artifacts were found on the Endriken Islands at Mili Atoll by Dick Spink and his search groups in recent years.  Spink says the long piece of metal on the left side is the most likely to have come from an Electra 10E.  Asked where these pieces could have come from if not the Earhart Electra, Spink said, “The only other explanation could be that they were pieces of aluminum that could have been possibly torn off of something like fishing gear or something else that floated up on the island. I guess I really don’t know where the pieces came from if they weren’t from her [Earhart’s] aircraft.” Testing of the artifacts is ongoing.  (Courtesy Dick Spink.)  

If you haven’t seen the Daily Mail stories yet, here they are for your review, linked by date of publication in the Daily Mail, or MailOnline as they like to call themselves: May 29June 26 and July 9.

If you’ve read any or all of these very similar pieces, you may have noticed the glaring lack of references to any previous investigative work on the Earhart disappearance as related to Mili Atoll. To the low-information reader, it appears as if the Daily Mail discovered this story all by itself, and is presenting it to the world for the first time! 

For those not inclined to click on the linked above, here’s a flavor of what I’m referring to, from the June 26 Daily Mail article, headlined, “EXCLUSIVE: Are these bits of metal proof that Amelia Earhart died after being captured by the Japanese on remote Pacific atoll – and the U.S. government KNEW but covered it up?”

Compelling new evidence found among the jagged coral of a tiny North Pacific island could be the key to finally unraveling the mystery of exactly what happened to U.S. aviator Amelia Earhart after she disappeared almost 80 years ago.

The corroding pieces of metal, discovered on the Mili atoll in the Marshall Islands, are currently being analysed [sic] to find out if they are the wheel well trim and dust cover from Amelia’s Lockheed Electra plane, which disappeared over the Pacific in 1937, while she and her navigator Fred Noonan were attempting to fly around the globe.

The two men behind the find believe that they are in possession of another piece of tantalizing [sic] evidence that they claim proves she and her companion were captured by the Japanese and died while in their hands. 

The circular metal dust cover from a landing-gear wheel assembly found by DIck Spinks' friend Martin Daly on Mili Atoll recently. “It is a dust cover off one of these Goodyear wheels,” aircraft analyst Jim Hayton said. “Since I had the other two wheels, I’m very familiar with this dust cover. I know exactly what it is."

The circular metal dust cover from a landing-gear wheel assembly found by Dick Spinks’ friend Martin Daly on Mili Atoll, now the object of extensive testing and speculation. “It is a dust cover off one of these Goodyear wheels,” aircraft expert Jim Hayton said. “Since I had the other two wheels, I’m very familiar with this dust cover. I know exactly what it is.” (Courtesy Dick Spink.)

Naturally I don’t appreciate this bunch ignoring Truth at Last, would you? But this isn’t a case of a personal problem between the Daily Mail and myself or Sunbury Press, the book’s publisher. The Daily Mail editors also failed to name Oliver Knaggs’ 1983 book, Amelia Earhart: Her final flight and Vincent V. Loomis’ Amelia Earhart: The Final Story (1985), works that presented the major Marshalls eyewitness, Bilimon Amaron and several others to the world for the first time.   

That’s just for starters. The MailOnline also refused to acknowledge the vital contributions of other researchers and authors who fought and bled to dig out the truth in this story, failing to mention — while at the same time pulling much information critical to their stories The Search for Amelia Earhart by Fred Goerner, the 1966 bestseller and the most important of all Earhart disappearance books, and Thomas Devine’s 1987 classic, Eyewitness: The Amelia Earhart Incident

Others have also made significant contributions to the Mili Atoll landing scenario, including the late Bill Prymak, who located and interviewed several new witnesses for the first time during his three trips to the Marshalls, many years before the recent finds. Their accounts are chronicled in Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last. Are you seeing a pattern yet?

The point is that if you read the Daily Mail stories, it’s as if no investigations have ever been done at Mili before Spink and his search groups showed up there a few years ago. Hyperbole is one thing, outright deceit by omission is quite another.  This is not to take anything away from Dick Spink’s potentially blockbuster discoveries, which in themselves are the best news in years for the truth in the Earhart case.

To ensure its clueless readers don’t get the impression that they came up with these stories out of thin air, however, the Daily Mail editors quoted two obscure witnesses, one an American who claims he was a good friend of Bilimon Amaron but otherwise has no ties to the story. The clear and quite dishonest implication is that these witnesses are sharing revelations about the Earhart disappearance that the world is hearing for the first time.

Amram’s friend Charles Domnick, 73, told MailOnline: ‘He told me he saw both of them on the Japanese vessel and spoke to Noonan. They were both sitting on the deck. He had no doubt about that.’

 Domnick said he went to Amram’s warehouse in the late 1960s, where his friend swore that he had accompanied a Japanese doctor to the Koshu Maru to look after an injured American.

. . . Jerry Kramer, a U.S. businessman who has lived on Majuro since the 1960s, told MailOnline he had been a good friend of Amram and could ‘absolutely confirm the story that he told about helping to treat the navigator and seeing Amelia Earhart.’

A satellite view of Mili Atoll. Note the top-left. or northwest quadrant, the location of Barre Island and the Endrikens, where Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan crash landed in the Mili lagoon on July 2, 1937.

A satellite view of Mili Atoll. Note the top left. or northwest quadrant, the location of Barre Island and the Endrikens, where Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan crash landed in the Mili lagoon on July 2, 1937.

The Daily Mail’s motivation for employing such a shabby editorial policy is obvious: They don’t want readers going anywhere else for their Earhart information, and if they want to learn more they’ll just have to wait for the next Daily Mail story, unless, of course they decide to do some online research of their own, a highly unlikely but not unheard-of practice among today’s mostly incurious masses.  

Dick Spink assured me that he urged Karen Earnshaw, named as the writer of at least two of the  stories, that she include a reference to Truth at Last, so clearly it was the Daily Mail editors who butchered these stories for their own selfish, shortsighted reasons.  

Who do they think they’re serving by shortchanging their readership in such a tawdry way? How many readers in the UK actually care about the Earhart story anyway? Very few, I would guess, so what is their anglewhy is the Daily Mail suddenly so “keen,” as they say in England, on the Earhart story? And why can’t they tell it correctly, instead of twisting themselves into literary pretzels in their ridiculous attempt to claim “exclusive rights” to a story that was told over 50 years ago by real journalists?

I sent cordial emails to Karen Earnshaw and Richard Shears, named as a co-author in two of the stories, to ask if they could explain why the Daily Mail has taken such an interest in the Earhart case, when nobody else in the media has changed their total blackout policy regarding any stories that present the Marshalls and Saipan pieces of the Earhart saga.

Neither Earnshaw, who lives in the Marshall Islands, nor Shears replied to my query, which typifies the rudeness, arrogance and lack of professionalism all too often found today in people who call themselves journalists, and which especially flavors the media’s attitude toward the Earhart story, apparently even when it’s offering pieces of the truth. We constantly hear about how the media has no standards anymore, and this is just another example. 

The Daily Mail obviously fashions itself a credible publication, so it has a responsibility to be honest with its readers, to cite its sources and to provide accurate background information in its stories. None of these basic requirements can be found in the recent Daily Mail Earhart-at-Mili Atoll series.

If the Daily Mail were a student taking journalism 101 at the local community college, these stories would have been returned with a big, fat “F” in large red ink, with a few choice comments from a slightly miffed professor to the moron who wasn’t listening to a damn thing he said. 


Eugene Sims and “Amelia Earhart’s Ghost,” Part 2

July 3, 2015

When I put together the previous post about Eugene Sims and his “ghost of Amelia Earhart” photo, I had no idea what I was stepping into, nor did Sims when he took the photo of the cell at the old Garapan prison on Saipan in 1973. While the figure Sims thought could have been Amelia’s ghost was apparently only a trick of the lighting within the cell, the rest of the photo has opened up a Pandora’s Box of possibilities, thanks to my friend Laurel Blyth Tague Ph.D.

After beholding what Laurel’s discerning eye had revealed, I was ready to title this post “Welcome to the Amelia Earhart Paranormal Society,” but then realized that might be a bit too far out on the “fringe,” where our critics like to keep us. Admittedly, this and the previous post are complete departures from our normal menu of serious discussion of the Earhart disappearance, but after more than 70 such posts since July 2012, I don’t think a brief journey into the paranormal will hurt the cause appreciably. 

Laurel is the New York State director, host and managing producer for E.P.I.C. Voyagers Radio on the Inception Radio Network. I’ve had the privilege and pleasure of appearing twice with Laurel on her two-hour E.P.I.C. Voyagers weekly show, and she was the best-prepared, most intelligent and considerate radio host I’ve ever met. She’s also a trained observer of phantoms, or phantasms, or however these faces that appear in photos of allegedly haunted places can be described.

Laurel Blyth Tague Ph.D., has indicated with red boxes and circles the locations of faces that can be seen in the Eugene SIms 1973 photo of Garapan prison.  Laurel explains the the image Sims thought might have been Amelia's ghost as a mere trick of light, but these other phantoms are less easily explained. Considering that Garapan prison, with its history of ghastly tortures, murders and  unimaginable pain, is the kind of place that is known throughout history as most likely to be haunted, these images are not surprising.

Laurel Blyth Tague Ph.D., has indicated with red boxes and circles the locations of faces that can be seen in the Eugene Sims’ 1973 photo of Garapan prison. Laurel explains the image Sims thought might have been Amelia’s ghost as a mere trick of light. But what do we call these faces, and from where do they come? Considering that Garapan prison, with its history of torture, murders and unimaginable pain is the kind of place known throughout history as most likely to be haunted, these images are not surprising. “A” is top circle, “B” and “C” are center boxes, “D,” E,” and “F” are boxes at left, and “G” is circle at right. (Photo copyright Eugene Sims, all rights reserved.)

I’ve seen similar faces on a website or possibly a book, but can’t find them now.  I suggested to Laurel that these wraith-like faces are to photography what electronic voice phenomena, commonly known as EVP, are to audio recording. She agreed, and isolated the individual faces she found in the photos, writing a brief description of each. Most I can recognize, but some are beyond me. Forthwith is the great presentation Laurel put together; I hope you like it half as much as I do. 

Dr. Laurel Blyth Tague:

Definitely EVPs are the gold standard of paranormal research: recorded voices saying things that make sense relative to the location and its history that are not noticed or heard by people at the time these utterances are collected digitally or on cassette tape. Only after later analysis – very careful and concerted attention to the entire audio – are these utterances heard. The ones I have heard from researchers are startling, both in terms of clarity and topic.

My logic tells me that making a sound or noise or uttering words might require far less energy from “that other dimension” (for lack of a common expression) than moving anything in this 3D dimension. I see manifesting an image or a wispy, smoky haze as somewhere between these two ways to communicate in terms of difficulty.  

Head tilted downward, eyes also looking downward, eyelids mostly closed.  Expression melancholy. Right side of nose in light, tip prominent by shadow beneath and to left. Lips slightly compressed, two lips visible.

Head tilted downward, eyes also looking downward, eyelids mostly closed. Expression melancholy. Right side of nose in light, tip prominent by shadow beneath and to left. Lips slightly compressed, two lips visible.

guess I should throw in the insertion of smells and thoughts (often reported), especially when a close relative or friend passes. These I would place a little easier on the scale of ghostly talent than even creating audio evidence. In fact, I think that these four types of evidence are collected on a scale of frequency in the same order: thoughts and smells, sounds and words, images and hazes, moving or relocated objects.

What we present here for your consideration is simply meant as food for thought, at the very least entertainment. When I read Mike’s most recent blog Eugene C. Sims and the “Ghost of Amelia Earhart”, I stared and stared at the photo and thought Sims must have been pointing to the highly lit feature in the middle of the central doorway, consisting of two parallel vertical lines and topped by what could be horizontal shoulders and a skull. I thought, no, this is just too easy – that has to be the way the light is shining into the cell through the jungle foliage. 

Head tilted up and to right slightly. Eyes open, left eye in shade. Nose prominent by light, nostrils shaded. Mouth in relaxed expression Chin beneath mouth, shadows on neck beneath chin. Dark fabric visible coming off left shoulder sets off neckline.

Head tilted up and to right slightly. Eyes open, left eye in shade. Nose prominent by light, nostrils shaded. Mouth in relaxed expression Chin beneath mouth, shadows on neck beneath chin. Dark fabric visible coming off left shoulder sets off neckline.

This tendency for humans to perceive scant visual stimuli and then attribute meaning to them has long been one very handy survival skill in our evolutionary toolkits. Granted, sometimes we may read too much into what we see. Nowadays the paranormal investigation community strongly warns fledgling researchers against matrixing. 

Surprisingly to me, Wikipedia actually has an interesting page dedicated to pareidolia, a less common term than matrixing, but with a more dignified and relevant etymology:  from the Greek para-, meaning, in this context, “something faulty or wrong” (for example, paraphasia: “disordered speech”) and eidolon (1828),“ a ghostly image or phantom.”

head tileted downward, eyes looking down, heavy eyelids. Nose prominent by light, face more shaded on left side. Right cheek accentuated by light. Both lips visible,slightly parted and slightly pursed Contour of face from cheek to chin visible on right side just to right of lower lip. Lighter feature below lips and chin suggests a left hand holding a cigarette, her expression suggesting she is getting a light from someone. Tip of cigarette visible near bottom center of image.

Head tilted downward, eyes looking down, heavy eyelids. Nose prominent by light, face more shaded on left side. Right cheek accentuated by light. Both lips visible,slightly parted and slightly pursed Contour of face from cheek to chin visible on right side just to right of lower lip. Lighter feature below lips and chin suggests a left hand holding a cigarette, her expression suggesting she is getting a light from someone. Tip of cigarette visible near bottom center of image.

Pareidolia is the imagined perception of a pattern or meaning where it does not actually exist, as in considering the moon to have human features.  Devotees of paranormal investigation have come to use the term matrixing to mean much the same when referring to the observation and interpretation of specifically visual information.

What is interesting to me is the implication inherent in this definition that whatever we think we are seeing is not really there: in other words, we are making it up by our interpretation, foisting upon the image qualities it does not truly have. There is almost the connotation that we are trying to fool others by stating what we see in the image, or at the very least we are demonstrating publicly that we are gullible fools.

Another option, putting both B and C together as a whole image. Below the face described in B, the image from C now suggests her upper torso, dark leather?] jacket open in font with lighter color shirt open at neck, or lighter color ascot or scarf tied at neck and tucked in. If Amelia ever smoked a pipe, it could explain the dark linear object protruding from her mouth. Many women did/do.

Another option, putting both B and C together as a whole image. Below the face described in B, the image from C now suggests her upper torso, dark [leather?] jacket open in font with lighter color shirt open at neck, or lighter color ascot or scarf tied at neck and tucked in. If Amelia ever smoked a pipe, it could explain the dark linear object protruding from her mouth. Many women did/do.

Well, I can think of examples of certain individuals involved in researching Earhart’s final demise who might well be described in this way.

So I saved the [Eugene C. Sims] image and opened it in a couple different apps I use to enlarge images and study them in greater detail. Immediately I saw that what appeared to be long, skeletal legs are indeed bamboo stalks or some other kind of flora, and that skull is just a big leaf. I laughed to myself, remembering one of my favorite Peanuts strips ever, where Linus, Lucy, and Charlie Brown are looking at clouds and telling each other what they resemble.

Notice the goggles above the face, on the front top of head; two brows, eyes in shadow beneath, slight smile; looking over right shoulder.

Notice the goggles above the face, on the front top of head; two brows, eyes in shadow beneath, slight smile; looking over right shoulder.

I thought, before I closed my app, I would poke around and look a bit, just to see if I noticed anything resembling a face or person, especially those of a female. I noticed three female faces almost within mere seconds and managed to find three more after really scouring over the image. I prepared little guidelines next to each extracted image I found, explaining what I saw, hoping to help someone else see what I did.

After emailing these to Mike and a couple other close friends (“open-minded” friends, I might add), one of them came back with a seventh woman’s face! What we present here are these extracted images with additional pointers to help with locating them in the larger image. 

Head tilted up and to right. Right eye looking upward slightly, brow above. Nose tip below, strong shadow beneath to upper left of mouth. Mouth below. two full lips visible, in a relaxed posture. Strong shin below lips.

Head tilted up and to right. Right eye looking upward slightly, brow above. Nose tip below, strong shadow beneath to upper left of mouth. Mouth below. two full lips visible, in a relaxed posture. Strong chin below lips.

At least some of these faces will stubbornly refuse to materialize for some of you. These details are best recognized at a certain resolution — too enlarged and it just looks like a gray mulch, too reduced and it looks like a more linear gray mulch. Viewers should play with zooming in and out by bits until the image pops out at them. The images here are at the best resolution for me. 

I am fiercely intellectually curious and open-minded but I would not say gullible. There are many things in this world that are not yet resolved or explained fully, because all the facts are not on the table and in many cases adequate technology or methodology are lacking.

One reader here asked why Amelia would haunt a location so completely imbued with agony and grief for her, to which another reader answered perhaps she is merely making her mark on this image at this blog, a place where we continue to question and dig and discuss until her true fate has been demonstrated and accepted by the public. This sounds to me like a plausible answer, and I hope each of you finds these images and comments at the very least thought-provoking and entertaining.

 

Head leaning to left. Face slender, eyes shut. Hair over right eye, covering it. Left nostril darkly shaded and prominent. Mouth looks open, agape, as if snoring in sleep. Right contour of chin visible and part of neck. Lighter feature below face in lower right portion of image could be arm, hand or something like a pillow on which the head is resting. Reminiscent of a death portrait.

Head leaning to left. Face slender, eyes shut. Hair over right eye, covering it. Left nostril darkly shaded and prominent. Mouth looks open, agape, as if snoring in sleep. Right contour of chin visible and part of neck. Lighter feature below face in lower right portion of image could be arm, hand or something like a pillow on which the head is resting. Reminiscent of a death portrait.

Every now and then I see a photo and – if I can assume it’s legitimate and not doctored – it is probably even more stunning to me. I never expect/demand that the image matches a pose from a photograph of the person.

This seems ridiculously pedantic and artificial to me – what of all the people who died before photography and were later seen as ghosts? How does a dead person select the exact photo s/he wants to use as the calling card in these instances? Not to mention, doesn’t it make more sense that a ghostly image in a photo that does match an old photo of that person, stands a better chance to have been technologically superimposed on the newer photo?

So it does not bother me that I do not see Amelia’s face, as in press photos, in these. The one with what I see to be goggles on her head is impressive to me.

(By the way, do any of you know of research funding streams to send a number of amateur ghost hunters researchers to Saipan to conduct research at this location? Just curious.) (End of Laurel Blyth Tague’s analysis; sincere thanks to Laurel for a great job.)

Profile of face looking toward left of image. Forehead, beneath that brow and skin area above eyelid. Eye is half open, looking straight ahead.  Cheek prominent by light, compared to shadow alongside the nose. Nose is somewhat short but straight. Two lips and chin toward bottom half of image.

Profile of face looking toward left of image. Forehead, beneath that brow and skin area above eyelid. Eye is half open, looking straight ahead. Cheek prominent by light, compared to shadow alongside the nose. Nose is somewhat short but straight. Two lips and chin toward bottom half of image.

Laurel sent the images to a well-known paranormal “expert” for his opinion, and he told her that this phenomenon is known as simulacrum, meaning “something looks like something it isn’t. Sort of the same thing as figures in clouds, etc.” He didn’t seem impressed, but since I’m not a paranormal expert, I’m free to reject the idea that these images can  be attributed to pareidolia, matrixing or even this fancy simulacrum term, which I consider to be a dodge.

If we’re seeing something “that doesn’t exist,” why are we seeing the same things in these photos? I think B+C looks a lot like Amelia, for example. And why do these faces appear almost exclusively in photos of notoriously haunted locations?

I think these faces might be those of discarnate or disembodied  entities trapped between planes of existence, between heaven and earth, so to speak, who for whatever reason cannot move on into the light — or the darkness, if that’s their destiny. Or could these some kind of lower-level demonic entities, lingering in a location renowned for evil doings, seeking new hosts or victims to torment?

How do you explain this, readers? What do you think? Let us hear from you!

 


Eugene C. Sims and the “Ghost of Amelia Earhart”

June 27, 2015

Kwajalein Atoll  is part of the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI). Comprising 97 islands and islets, it has a land area of 6.33 square miles and surrounds one of the largest lagoons in the world, with an area of  839 square miles. Some 13,500 Marshallese citizens live on the atoll, most of them on Ebeye Island.

The southernmost and largest island in the atoll is Kwajalein Island, with a population of about 1,000, mostly Americans with a small number of Marshall Islanders and other nationalities, all of whom require express permission from the U.S. Army to live there. Kwajalein Island houses the mission control center for the Ronald Reagan Missile Defense Test Site, commonly referred to as the Reagan Test Site, which primarily functions as a test facility for U.S. missile defense and space research programs.

Roi-Namur has several radar installations and a small residential community of unaccompanied U.S. personnel who deal with missions support and radar tracking. Japanese bunkers and buildings from World War II are in good condition and preserved. Roi and Namur were originally separate islets that were joined by a causeway built predominately by Korean conscripted laborers working under the Japanese military.

Kwajalein Island itself is only about 1.2 square miles! Check out the photo above – that’s the whole thing.Yeah, around 3.5 miles long and less than a mile wide with an average elevation of 8 feet. The land area of the entire atoll is just over 6 square miles. But these little coral islands surround one of the largest lagoons in the world – about 840 square miles. Kwajalein Island houses the mission control center for the Ronald Reagan Missile Defense Test Site, commonly referred to as the Reagan Test Site, which primarily functions as a test facility for U.S. missile defense and space research programs. Kwajalein is one of 11 islands in the atoll that is operated by the U.S. military under a long term lease with the Republic of the Marshall Islands.

A 1943 pre-invasion map of Kwajalein Atoll.  Note location of Roi-Namur in the northernmost part of the atoll, where several eyewitnesses including military personnel have attested to the presence of Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan in July 1937. The land area of the entire atoll is just over 6 square miles. But these little coral islands surround one of the largest lagoons in the world – about 840 square miles.

This brief introduction to Kwajalein is simply meant to help focus readers who may not be familiar with this Marshalls Islands atoll, located in the north-central Pacific about 1,500  miles from Saipan, which is always directly related to Amelia Earhart, at least in this blog.

Now to the point: The Jan. 7, 2003 edition of The Kwajalein Hourglass, the weekly newsletter at the U.S. Army facility at Kwajalein, ran an article, “Did Amelia Earhart land on Kwajalein Atoll?” by Eugene C. Sims, who was stationed  there as a GI in 1945 and returned to work as a civilian from 1964 to ’71, and from 1983 to ’86.

Sims recalled his youth in Oakland, California during the 1930s, and how he grew to idolize Earhart after seeing her at the local airport. When Fred Goerner’s book was published in 1966, Sims was working on Kwajalein; after reading it, he was inspired to pursue his own Earhart investigation. “I was surprised to hear them speak so openly about the white-skinned lady and man that came to Kwajalein in 1937,” Sims wrote.

An unidentified Marshallese man told Sims that as a twelve-year-old in 1937, “a large Japanese ship came into the harbor” and he saw “a white lady and man on the deck,” a rare sight in those times. Sims wrote that because Goerner had been denied access to Kwajalein in the early 1960s, “Goerner was never to learn [the] concrete proof that Amelia was on Kwajalein and Roi-Namur in 1937.”

In a future post, we’ll look at the previously unknown eyewitnesses Sims and others presented in the pages of The Kwajalein Hourglass, but today is for something different.  As I’ve done before when it’s appropriate, I remind readers that I’m presenting this information for your own discernment, and am neither endorsing it or dismissing it.

This is the inside of the cell at Saipan's old Garapan prison that is said to have been occupied by Amelia Earhart. Former Marine and Saipan veteran Henry Duda took it during his visit to Saipan for the 50th anniversary of the historic 1944 Battle of Saipan.

The inside of the cell at Saipan’s old Garapan prison that is said to have been occupied by Amelia Earhart. Former Marine and Saipan veteran Henry Duda shot this photo while attending commemoration ceremonies for the 50th anniversary of the historic Battle of Saipan in 1994.

In 1972 Sims was transferred to Agana, Guam, to set up a new business for Global Associates. He and his wife Betty remained on Guam for over eight years, and during that time Sims continued to learn more about the fate of Amelia Earhart. As an engineer and manager of the new business, he traveled extensively throughout Micronesia, and made weekly trips to Saipan, where he made friends with many of the island’s indigenous families. Some of them had lived on Saipan in the 1930s, and the subject of Earhart was discussed many times.

I contacted Sims in 2006 after his work in the Hourglass came to my attention, and he was happy to talk and share his findings. He also sent me a copy of the Winter 2002 Kwajaletter, a sister publication of the Hourglass, which featured a fascinating story, “The Ghost of Amelia Earhart,” that Sims wrote from his home in Coos Bay, Oregon.  Following are the salient paragraphs of Sims’ article, along with the unique photo he shot on Saipan in 1973:

I found that few people wished to discuss the 1937 event of her disappearance or of her being brought to Saipan by the Japanese. My wife and I were shown various places on Saipan where Amelia allegedly had been seen. One man took me to a spot in the old cemetery where he claimed she was buried but the most interesting place we visited was the old Garapan prison used by the Japanese in the 1930s.

After the American forces recaptured Saipan in mid-1944, the old stone and steel-framed prison building was abandoned and left to decay. Cutting through the dense overgrown jungle and then stumbling over giant roots of tangatanga to gain access to the remnants of the old jail-like structure was a real effort.  Our guide showed us the jail cells where Amelia and Fred were supposedly held captive. I took many pictures.

Eugene Sims, of Coos Bay, Oregon, a veteran of three tours at the U.S. Army Facility Kwajalein, Marshall Islands, took this 1973 photo of the center cell he was told Amelia Earhart occupied at Garapan prison in 1937. It's not possible to determine whether this cell is the same as the one pictured above.  Although the scan of the glossy photo doesn't quite convey the strange quality of the figure he captured, something is there that doesn't appear to be natural.  As Eugene Sims wrote on the back of the photo he sent me in 2006, "See her ghost?"

Eugene Sims, of Coos Bay, Oregon, a veteran of three tours at the U.S. Army Facility Kwajalein, Marshall Islands, took this 1973 photo of the center cell he was told Amelia Earhart occupied at Garapan prison in 1937. It’s not possible to determine whether this cell is the same as the one pictured above. Although the scan of the glossy photo doesn’t quite convey the strange quality of the figure he captured, something is there that doesn’t appear to be natural. As Eugene Sims wrote on the back of the photo he sent me in 2006, “See her ghost?” (Photo courtesy Eugene Sims and may not be reproduced without permission.)

Several days later in Guam and after the photos had been developed, I was shocked to see one print of Amelia’s cell. In the rusted metal frame of the cell door stood a white ghostly figure! Was this some sort of photo misprint? I had the picture reprinted and again the ghostly outline was in evidence.  I considered the ghost to be a message from Amelia and put my collection of Amelia in my locked files. What good would it do to show the picture?

At first, I reasoned the information might make a whale of a story, but then I realized maybe the data would just become more controversy about the fate of Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan. At this time I have no intention of writing anything more on the subject. My files are closed, but I still look at that ghostly picture . . . and wonder. (End of Sims story.)

 Eugene C. Sims passed away in November 2013 at 86.

 


Navy nurse’s letter describes gruesome end for fliers

June 12, 2015

Mary Adams Patterson, of Bangor, Maine, was the only female veteran to provide Earhart-related information to Thomas E. Devine, after he closed his classic 1987 book, Eyewitness: The Amelia Earhart Incident, with a plea to all Saipan veterans who had their own experiences during the summer of 1944 that supported his own and indicated the presence and deaths of Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan in the years prior to the war. 

Patterson was Lieutenant (Junior Grade) Mary Adams, Navy Nurse Corps, assigned to the military hospital on Saipan in 1946, where she met Sister Maria Angelica Salaberria, M.M.B, known to all as Sister Angelica, a Spanish-born, multilingual Catholic nun who taught Japanese and English on Saipan from 1934 to 1949. 

Sister Angelica’s account is one of the most gruesome ever reported in describing the deaths the American fliers on Saipan. No other Saipanese or GI veterans of the Saipan invasion reported details as ghastly as these. This is not to endorse or dismiss Patterson’s account via Sister Angelica, but is presented simply for your information and entertainment, if reading such a horrific account of the wretched deaths of Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan can be considered entertaining. Following is Mary Patterson’s letter to Devine of March 14, 1993.

Lieutenant (junior grade) Mary Adams, Navy Nurse Corps, circa 1946.

Lieutenant (junior grade) Mary Adams, Navy Nurse Corps, circa 1946.

Dear Tom,

I am so sorry you worked so hard to find me. I moved to my daughter’s house for the winter. I am definitely going to try to get a copy of your book.

A Chamorro woman, whose name I have forgotten, told me a little bit about a white man and woman brought to Saipan by the Japanese. I passed what information given me to Sister Angelica, a Spanish missionary nun from the Basque Country. She added to it by saying that the Japanese jail in Chalan Kanoa village was only a short distance from the convent. A very limited number of Chamorros knew about the white prisoners.

This information was whispered to her as everyone feared the Japanese guards. A few days later the six Spanish nuns heard blood-curdling screams coming from the jail. They paced the floor and prayed. They were powerless to intervene. The screams ceased at 3 P.M. Tension ran high.

The next day a Japanese-trusted Chamorro man whispered to Sister Angelica, in promised secrecy, that the bodies were removed in the darkest part of the night and buried. The white people were questioned as spies and were tortured to death by first cutting the fingers off at the first joint, the second, third, at the wrist and so on. The feet were used also.

After time passed, Sister Angelica told me that the white man and woman were Americans and became known as Amelia Earhart and Noonan [sic]. Sister Angelica told me that she was informed secretly by her trusted Chamorro friend, that a plane was brought ashore at Tanapag harbor with the two white prisoners. The plane was taken to a guarded building with no windows a short distance away. The building was strictly secured and Japanese soldiers were there twenty-four hours a day. About two weeks later, in the middle of the night, the plane was put aboard a Japanese ship.

I have forgotten where the Navy engineering officers were excavating to construct the building as to the exact site but was not near Chalan Kanoa. It seems vaguely that it was near Tanapag. They told Captain Siess (MC) USN over drinks at the officers club at the hospital about the bodies. I was sitting at the same table. It was probably October 1945.

Capt. Siess told them that they did the right think in respectfully burying the two unknown skeletons near the building in an unmarked grave. No autopsies were necessary he said. No missing persons were reported. There were no facilities for forensic autopsies and it could open up a Pandora’s Box. 

I was at the time Lt. (j.g.) Mary Eileen Adams (NC) USNR and on active duty at that hospital. No one asked my advice and I knew better than to doubt Capt. Siess. Furthermore it sounded right at the time.

Lieutenant (junior grade) Mary E. Adams, USN, with Sister Angelica and an unidentified nun, at the gravesite of Sister Genoveva, who was killed during the Battle of Saipan, circa 1946. Sister Angelica, who was on Saipan in 1937, told Adams about an American white man and woman who “became known as Amelia Earhart and Noonan” who were “tortured to death” by the Japanese on Saipan in the prewar years (Courtesy Mary Patterson.)

Lieutenant (junior grade) Mary E. Adams, USN, with Sister Angelica and an unidentified nun, at the gravesite of Sister Genoveva, who was killed during the Battle of Saipan, circa 1946. Sister Angelica, who was on Saipan in 1937, told Adams about an American white man and woman who “became known as Amelia Earhart and Noonan” who were “tortured to death” by the Japanese on Saipan in the prewar years.  (Courtesy Mary Patterson.)

Sister Angelica . . . would presently be about 80 years old. I am enclosing a snapshot of me, Sister Angelica and another Spanish missionary nun whose name I have forgotten. when the Germans withdrew from Saipan following World War I, the natives contacted Tokyo for religious teachers. The Japanese contacted the Pope who sent a Spanish priest, four teaching nuns and two lay sisters to care for the convent.  The nuns went to Japan first to learn Japanese which Sister Angelica said was very easy because it was so similar to their own Basque.

One night in June 1944 the Japanese put the nuns in Japanese-American crossfire and they were kept moving along a jungle path. Bullets were flying everywhere, a soldier told them not to touch the electric fences that were strung for the advancing Americans. The night was inky black. Sister Genoveva was hit and mortally wounded according to Sister Angelica.

Then next morning they returned to get the body. A soldier told Sister Angelica that the deceased was buried in their funeral pyre for their killed soldiers. In the picture, I am at the death site where the wooden crosses were put. Those nuns in the picture spoke excellent English. The lay sisters could not. The remaining missionaries are not on Saipan now.

Forrest Sheldon … WWII Saipan sailor is also interested in Amelia Earhart. His friend worked for Polaroid and supposedly pushed a cart (to the back of the plant) marked A. Earhart trunk.

Sincerely, Mary Adams Patterson

The disposition of the Earhart Electra in Angelica’s account is unlikely, unless the plane was put on a ship to perform repairs, possibly in Tokyo, and later returned to the island for some unknown reason.  Devine and others reported that they saw Earhart’s plane in the air over Saipan in the summer of 1944, thus the damaged wing described by Bilimon Amaron and John Heine must have been repaired in the intervening years.

Time of agony: The War in the Pacific in Saipan, the personal account of Sister Maria Angelica Salaberria is Sister Angelica’s harrowing account of the terrors she, seven of her fellow nuns, and two Jesuit priests endured as they struggled for survival while the battle for Saipan raged around them, and is available at several online sites.

Unmentioned in her story was an encounter with a group of Marines during the conflict’s final days, an incident one of them, Anselmo Valverde, of Santa Fe, New Mexico, described in a 1995 letter to Devine. “As well as I can remember,” Valverde wrote, “it was when the Army was on our left flank and we were making sure there were no breaks in the line, that I met the nuns and about eight children who were on the way to the holding area. . . . When we assured them we were not the enemy, they said that a woman pilot was killed on the island by the Japanese. When and where, they did not say.

Nothing more is known of Forrest Sheldon or his friend with the strange claim about the “A. Earhart trunk.” I haven’t found an obituary for Patterson, who would be well into her 90s now. 

UPDATE: I’ve just be informed by a reader, Flyfan, that Mary Adams Patterson died at age 85 in 2008. As I told Mr. Fly, she was a great patriot and a fine lady. She was survived by six children and 12 grandchildren. More can be found at:

http://bangordailynews.com/2008/09/25/obituaries/mary-a-patterson-rn/

 


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