Reality Checking with Brent Raynes


Discover the connection between UFO visitors and shamanic lore! Brent Raynes' stunning book—intro. by Brad Steiger.

Visitors from Hidden Realms: The Origin and Destiny of Humanity As Told by Star Elders, Shamen, and UFO Visitors

Ufology’s mixed bag of aliens, apparitions, and monsters

Sandy Nichols of the Alien Research Group sets up his video camera on a tripod in Sherry Malin’s livingroom. I unpack my tape recorder and remove a blank cassette tape from its cellophane wrapper. Sherry’s husband Rodney sits on a nearby sofa with his laptop. Sherry explains to me that he’s an auditor, and so I figure he’s crunching numbers. Though another part of me suspects he’s also nonchalantly keeping tabs on what the two out-of-town visitors are up to in his home. Of course, he’s met Sandy before, and he knows we’re going to have a rather extensive conversation on practically all things paranormal, ufological, and some things cryptozoological. Sandy has already warned me before our arrival that Rodney’s a dyed in the wool “skeptic.” Of course, Sherry is certainly a “believer,” and then some, plus she’s an experiencer. She can speak personally of experiences of the paranormal, UFOs, and Bigfoot.

Sherry and Rodney live together in a nice home in Algood, a suburb of Cookville, Tennessee. Their neighborhood looks like a pleasant one. Middle to Upper Class. At first we’re just pretty much conversationally breaking the ice, discussing thoughts, beliefs, and bits and pieces of experiences. However, pretty soon we’re taping, the heat is turned up (figuratively speaking) and when it gets really serious the skeptical spouse finds something to do elsewhere in the home. It’s a phenomenon I’ve observed many times before over the years.

Even true believers might have suffered skeptical moments or what psychologists refer to as cognitive dissonance if they had attempted to sit through our taped conversations and interviews. The reason is that while Sandy and Sherry can converse fluently on all of the classic elements of “nuts and bolts” ufology and the so-called “abduction” phenomenon, they also frequently will crossover in conversation and mention paranormal elements and Bigfoot, all in virtually the same breath. They have no problem in seeing these things as interrelated, though a lot of “believers” do, and of course I’m sure that “skeptics” perceive it all as interrelated in the sense that it’s all utter nonsense.

Sandy and Sherry have also worked together for several years on various cases. I got to talk with them both about a number of their more interesting investigations, one case at a time. One involved the entire spectrum of high-strangeness. This one is no doubt my personal favorite. “Sherry Malin can verify this,” Sandy began. “We were doing a case over in Celina, Tennessee, which is about an hour from here. There was a boy (age 5?). The child was having difficulties in school, but he was also saying that things were coming out of his closet.”

“He drew me an image, a very detailed image of a creature that he sees on this ship, that aliens told him not to mess with because it was dangerous. It just so happens that two years before that I was helping a lady with her and her daughter. The daughter was 4-6 years of age at the time and the daughter had drawn an image of a creature that they said her aliens had told her not to mess with and so when I looked at the picture up here in Celina then my thoughts automatically went to this picture from somebody up in Oregon or Washington state. I forget which state. It was the exact same picture drawn by two different children living 2500 miles apart. But this child was not only having abduction type experiences, or sharing things that went along that route, but was also talking about how he was a doctor and that his wife died. After research sure enough right there on that property where the double wide mobile home was there was a concrete (house foundation) that used to belong to a doctor. His wife had been killed in a car wreck, which is exactly what the child was saying. They had four children, and the four children died in a fire while he was out on a house call.”

“While we were there, I personally witnessed the little boy’s sister sitting on the floor with her legs spread, (she) had a small ball in front of her rolling across the floor, and then the ball would stop and roll back to her. When I saw this I said something to the mother and she said, ‘Yeah, she says she’s got this play friend.’ So I went to the little girl and sat on the floor and said ‘Could I talk to them?’ The little ghost girl would not talk to me. I said, ‘Well, could the little ghost girl do something to let me know that she’s really here?’ She said, ‘Well maybe.’ So I go back to the kitchen table, still watching them, and this girl appeared to be interacting with something, and you remember [Sandy at this point is talking to Sherry] we’re sitting at the table, it’s winter time, and I get up to go smoke a cigarette about an hour later, and I hate to say this but….my belt was undone, my pants were unbuttoned, and I’m going, ‘What the heck?’”

Sherry laughed, adding, “It was a mischievous ghost, a poltergeist. And this crystal that Jamie [the mother] had, it was shaking.” The crystal chandelier was suspended over the kitchen table. “Yes, it was moving back and forth,” Sandy confirmed. “But I asked for something to be done and then when I stood up the little girl was sitting like at a school desk that they had in the den part, and I had a clear open view and when I stood up and saw that the little boy’s sister came up and she was going ‘hee, hee, hee,’ because she said later that the little ghost girl had done that.”

“What I did to verify this,” Sandy explained, “I went to the county seat to look through the old county records and I verified about the reality of a doctor who had lived on that same property, which explained the slab of concrete for the original house that had burned down. Also about his wife getting killed in a car wreck, which the little boy said that he was a doctor and his wife got killed in a car wreck out in the street, in front of their house, and that they had four children. The four children were the ghost children that burned in a fire while the dad, the doctor, had been at a house on call. This was like back in the 1920s or something like that.”

“There have been cases where I have gone to interview people who thought they were abductees, or knew they were abductees, and getting into the interview we found out that they had ghost experiences too,” Sandy went on. “So then we conduct ghost investigations at the same time or come back later. Then they talk about Bigfoot, and Sherry Malin and I have some photos where we have gone out Bigfoot hunting and made a Bigfoot cast.”

“There was Bigfoot on that property too,” Sherry added. “Me and Mary [another investigator] were setting up cameras to try and catch them. We tried our best to get a picture.”

“Now there was a report from the 1950s that I found in the old newspaper,” Sandy pointed out. “A report of a UFO crashing into the Cumberland River, not but several miles from their house.” Jamie had told them about it. “She kept telling me that there was a UFO that at a certain time you would see come out of the sky and dive for the water,” Sherry added. “I saw it with my own eyes. One night I looked and I saw it. It was a bright white light, oval shaped, and it went right straight for that water.”

“We had been up there three or four times investigating this case,” Sandy noted, explaining that he then moved temporarily to Miami, Florida for awhile and thus lost touch with this family.

Apparently they have found Standing Stone State Park to be a hotbed for Bigfoot activity. “We’ve actually heard Bigfoot calls up there once or twice,” Sandy said. “Oh yeah, and they like to throw rocks at you too,” Sherry added. I asked if they had ever been hit, and Sherry said, “No, they won’t ever hit you. If they wanted to they could.” “They’re just warning you away,” Sandy stated.

Sherry recalled years ago living in a haunted house in Morristown, Tenn. “I’d hear voices in there at night,” she said, “and things moved around.” One night she saw a ball of light, possibly the size of a tennis ball, streak through her bedroom. “It was real bright,” she explained. “Sort of a bluish and yellowish looking light. It’s hard to explain.”

Sandy described a lot of classic paranormal activity occurring at his home, which was constructed just a little over three years ago. “As a matter of fact, one of our cleaning ladies no longer works in the house,” Sandy declared. “She had been working there for like a year and half, but she was upstairs, in a hallway where it overlooks our main den down on the first floor. She was coming out of the bedroom and saw a solid person walking fast down the hallway and the only people who were in the house were the two cleaning ladies.”

“She quit,” Sandy said. “It was just a tall guy and I had seen that tall guy myself three times in my house, and Sherrie (Sandy’s wife) saw what we believe is George. The tall guy I have no idea who he is, but my gut feelings tell me that George, Barbara and Libby, (who were) dad, mom and daughter, were settlers or pioneers coming through there, or maybe they were driven off their property during the civil war.” However, Sandy says the “tall guy” is attired more in what looks to be 1920’s or ‘30s clothing.

I asked Sherry Malin about seeing aliens and she stated, “In this house right here I’ve had abductions. I sleep on the side closest to the door. I woke up and I saw an alien staring down at me and it scared me to death. It was a grey. I couldn’t get Rodney awake. I kept shaking him.”

Some researchers have speculated that there may be a connection between reports of so-called apparitions and “aliens”. F.W. Holiday, in his thought-provoking book Creatures From The Inner Sphere (1973), that was originally entitled The Dragon and the Disc, cited a case near Heytesbury, Wiltshire, England, where back in 1965 a young woman was driving her fiancÚ back home and in the vicinity of a railroad bridge, where a number of fatalities had occurred, they were startled to see an apparent body laying at the edge of the road. They swerved to miss it, stopped and looked around, but it had vanished. After dropping her fiancÚ off the young lady came back through the same area around 12:25 a.m. when she was again frightened near the same bridge. She saw a bright orange glow shining on an embankment and then a “large orange ball” flying off into the sky. Simultaneously, she noticed a round object, this one dark and stationary, and two figures wearing dark tight-fitting clothing with some kind of headgear. She almost struck them with her car. Frightened she sped away at high speed. A month later, a retired R.A.F. Group-Captain and his wife were passing through a location about a mile away from the site just described when they were startled to see a tall dark masked figure and, in the same instant, the form of a naked, blood-covered young man staggering out of a hedge, looking like an accident victim. The Group-Captain quickly put his car in reverse to offer assistance, only to find that both figures had vanished completely.

Holiday pointed out that the ‘body on the bridge’ and the ‘youth in the hedge’ were classic textbook examples of apparitions connected with scenes of tragedy, that psychical researchers have collected thousands of these stories. However, Holiday wondered, what did the UFO-type phenomenon and masked figures have to do with apparitions generally associated with more conventional forms of human-related accidents or tragedies?

Veteran UFO investigator John A. Keel saw a connection. Back in 1971, he wrote me: “In 1942, a brilliant parapsychologist named G.N.M. Tyrrell presented his superb study of apparitions and cited 19 points in his effort to define the ‘perfect apparition.’ His study was actually very relevant to the UFO phenomenon and many UFO cases meet the criteria he established. For example, point 17 is: ‘If we were to take a photograph of two figures, a real man and an apparition, only the real man would come out. And if we had sound recording apparatus, only the sounds made by the real man would be recorded…’ I have had experience with this sort of phenomenon myself. And many of my correspondents have had baffling experiences with it. For example, some witnesses to our ‘mystery airplanes’ and phantom helicopters have grabbed their cameras and fired away at the low-altitude objects only to have the film come out blank…empty sky.”

“When I had a phone I had a tape recorder attached to it and recorded many of my interviews,” Keel added. “Some of my ‘phantom phone calls’ failed to record (tape came out blank) or nothing but heavy static was recorded.”

Sandy Nichols and Sherry Malin again crossover. Both embrace the classic “nuts and bolts” scenario of presumed extraterrestrial visitations as well. They accept and have experienced both the psychic and physical realities of these assorted phenomena. Sherry explained that her late father worked at New Mexico’s White Sands as a radar technician, working with Wernher von Braun. “He told me that when one of the V-2 missiles would be launched there might be a UFO, a flying saucer, and they would circle the rockets.” Sandy asked Sherry if von Braun and the others had witnessed these UFOs also. “Yeah, he said they all knew about it,” she replied. “They saw ‘em!”

“My dad said the Roswell crash happened and that there were some men sent from White Sands to go pack up the spaceship,” Sherry added. “He didn’t say UFO. He said a flying saucer. Dad said they were aliens. They weren’t from here.”

Readers will find Apollo astronaut Edgar Mitchell’s response to this White Sands story interesting (read this issue’s interview feature), as well as his remarks on the Roswell UFO controversy.

TV’s “UFO Hunters”

Back on February 6th the History Channel and the Sci Fi Channel both aired dueling programs with the same title: UFO Hunters. Nothing like a little competition! One recent “UFO Hunters” produced by the History Channel (which will apparently premiere on March 26) features noted researcher Philip Imbrogno (interviewed by us in the July 2007 #114 issue of this magazine). I asked Phil what we could expect to see in this broadcast. He emailed me back: “The connection between the Hudson Valley UFO and the locations of the Stone Chambers. I provided data and some visual material, plus an interview in the field taking the crew to one location.”

I also asked Phil about how well the production was put together and the intent of the producers. “They seem serious and interested, but the investigation lacks any substance,” he noted. “Parts are edited together to make it look like an intensive investigation is underway. Its money vs. time.”

“It will bring interest to the population but both shows really lack investigative substance. It’s not the researchers fault. It has to do with Hollywood and making money for the smallest amount of expense.”

Phil has a new book coming out soon entitled Interdimensional Universe. I asked him to tell us something about it. “My new book ties together the paranormal with UFOs,” he wrote. “Like Albert Einstein who tried to find a unified theory to tie all the forces in the universe together I also looked for a unified theory to tie together most forms of paranormal phenomena. The multi-universe idea.”

A New Book

Alternative Perceptions contributing author Alexander Zikas has just published the book Synchronictic Adventures under an earlier pen name. Zikas was the former Director of Investigations for Virginia MUFON and documents his years of research in which he personally eyewitnessed many UFOs and experienced psychic phenomena. The book contains a chapter on his friend and colleague Dr. Bruce Cornet and Bruce's research at Pine Bush and a look at his incredible personal experiences. Zikas believes Jungian archetypes are responsible for UFOs and psychic phenomena and develops this theory in his book to offer one possible explanation for the activity at Pine Bush and elsewhere. The book is available directly from the author at