Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Ghosts of Flight 401 - The official airline of the paranormal

The most extraordinary and credible research into the ghost phenomenon ever documented is the so-called "Ghosts of Flight 401." On December of 1972, an Eastern Airlines Tri-Star jetliner, Flight 401, crashed into a Florida swamp. The pilot, Bob Loft (on the left), and flight engineer Don Repo (on the right), were two of the 101 people who perished in the air crash. Not long after the crash, the ghosts of Loft and Repo were seen on more than twenty occasions by crew members on other Eastern Tri-Stars, especially those planes which had been fitted with parts salvaged from the Flight 401 wreckage. The apparitions of Loft and Repo were invariably described as being extremely lifelike. They were not only reported by people who had known Loft and Repo, but their ghosts were also subsequently identified from photographs by people who had not known Loft and Repo.

The strange tales of the ghostly airmen of Flight of 401 circulated in the airline community. An account of the paranormal happenings even appeared in a 1974 US Flight Safety Foundation's newsletter. John G. Fuller, the best-selling author of The Ghost of Flight 401, carried out an exhaustive investigation into the hauntings with the aid of several cautious airline personnel. A mass of compelling testimony was produced as a result. The website Flight 401 – The Black Box Story provides an account of the crash as told using material from the Black Box. It highlights how poor cockpit resource management caused a tiny light bulb to distract the pilots and bring down a Tristar jetliner.

The cause of the crash was found to be a couple of minor design faults in the controls, and Lockheed rapidly corrected them. However, it was after some of the undamaged parts of the aircraft were subsequently recycled onto other planes that the mysterious incidents began to be reported. Although Eastern Airlines refuses to discuss the matter, researchers have interviewed numerous individuals claiming to have encountered the ill-fated pair on L-1011s. As the reports would have it, Loft and Repo have devoted their after-lives to watching over the passengers and crew of these Lockheed passenger planes.

Many of the testimonies are extremely persuasive. Many come from people in highly responsible positions: pilots, flight officers, even a vice president of Eastern Airlines, who allegedly spoke with a captain he assumed was in charge of the flight, before recognizing him as the late Loft. 

Ghosts of Flight 401 - The official airline of the paranormal

The Great Train Robbery - Unsolved Mystery

The Great Train Robbery is the name given to a £2.6 million train robbery (the equivalent of £41 million today) committed on 8 August 1963 at Bridego Railway Bridge, Ledburn near Mentmore in Buckinghamshire, England. The bulk of the stolen money was not recovered. Three robbers were never found, two convicted robbers escaped. One convicted was most likely never involved, and died in prison. Though there were no firearms involved, the standard judgment was 30 years.

Planning the robbery

The robbery was planned by several parties with no overall mastermind. Although the robbery operation itself was planned and executed by the late Bruce Reynolds, the target and the information came from a still unknown individual dubbed the "Ulsterman". The key field organisers were Gordon Goody, Buster Edwards and Charlie Wilson, with Brian Field being the key link between the robbers and the informant.

At 6:50 PM on Wednesday 7 August 1963 the travelling post office (TPO) "Up Special" train set off from Glasgow Central Station, Scotland en route to Euston Station in London. The train was hauled by an English Electric Type 4 (later Class 40) diesel-electric locomotive numbered at the time as D326 (later renumbered 40 126). The train consisted of 12 carriages and carried 72 Post Office staff who sorted mail during the journey.

Mail was loaded onto the train at Glasgow and also during station stops en route, as well as from line-side collection points where local post office staff would hang mail sacks on elevated track-side hooks which were caught by nets deployed by the on-board staff. Sorted mail on the train could also be dropped off at the same time. This process of exchange allowed mail to be distributed locally without delaying the train with unnecessary station stops. One of the carriages involved in the robbery is preserved at the Severn Valley Railway.

The second carriage behind the engine was known as the HVP (High Value Packages) coach, which carried large quantities of money, as well as registered mail for sorting. Usually the value of the shipment was in the region of £300,000, but because there had been a Bank Holiday weekend in Scotland, the total on the day of the robbery was £2.6 million (equivalent to about £43 million in 2012 RPI terms). 

The Great Train Robbery - Unsolved Mystery

Thursday, April 11, 2013

The Legend of the African Fertility Statues

Please Don't Touch - Unless You Want a Baby!

More than 2,000 women have reported that they became pregnant shortly after touching the wooden fertility statues. Many of them had been told by doctors they would never be able to conceive. Some are very serious about touching the statues, believing in their powers to help them conceive. Others want to avoid touching the fertlity statues - for the very same reason! The five-foot tall wooden statues were acquired from the Ivory Coast of West Africa in 1993 and were placed in the lobby of Ripley Entertainment's corporate headquarters in Orlando. Within months, 13 women, including staffers and office visitors were pregnant.

A Little History

The five foot tall wooden statues were acquired from the Baule people of the Ivory Coast of West Africa and within a year of going on display at Ripley Entertainment’s head office in Orlando, Florida, 13 office staff and visitors became pregnant. 

The idea of fertility statues appear in a variety of cultures. Fertility statues serve both as a tribute to whatever fertility gods that the locals believe in, as well as often a mystical totem which helps the women of a given tribe to conceive and bear healthy children. These fertility statues may resemble people, or they can look like some particular animal that is associated with fertility in that culture. Archaeological digs have turned up a variety of these sorts of statues, from the Norse goddess Freya riding a boar to the statue of a fat woman found in the ruins of the Tarxien temples on the island of Malta.  

The Legend of the African Fertility Statues

Pope Joan OR Popess Joan - Mysterious Woman Pope Who Just Won't Go Away

Pope Joan Woman Popess

According to legend, Pope Joan was a woman who concealed her gender and ruled as pope for two years, from 853-855 ad. Her identity was exposed when, riding one day from St. Peter's to the Lateran, she stopped by the side of the road and, to the astonishment of everyone, gave birth to a child.

Pope Joan was a legendary female Pope who allegedly reigned for a few years some time during the Middle Ages. The story first appeared in 13th-century chronicles, and was subsequently spread and embellished throughout Europe. It was widely believed for centuries, though modern religious scholars consider it fictitious, perhaps deriving from historicized folklore regarding Roman monuments or from anti-papal satire.

The first mention of the female pope appears in the chronicle of Jean de Mailly, but the most popular and influential version was that interpolated into Martin of Troppau's Chronicon Pontificum et Imperatorum, later in the 13th century. Most versions of her story describe her as a talented and learned woman who disguises herself as a man, often at the behest of a lover. In the most common accounts, due to her abilities, she rises through the church hierarchy, eventually being elected pope. However, while riding on horseback, she gives birth, thus exposing her gender. In most versions, she dies shortly after, either being killed by an angry mob or from natural causes. Her memory is then shunned by her successors. 

 Mysterious Woman Pope Who Just Won't Go Away


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