OF A MISSING TIME CASE
Analysis of the Experience of Dr. Lynne Kitei, M.D.
by B. Maccabee, Ph.D.
1999; rev. 2010
An unusual event occurred in the lives of two respected and accomplished medical professionals: they had a joint sighting of unexplained lights (orbs/objects) and one of them took photographs during the sighting. Afterward their recollection was that the sighting had lasted only a few minutes and that only two photos had been taken. However, during the investigation and analysis of the photographs it became apparent that there was a considerable time between them. Both of the witnesses were totally unaware that there had been more than several minutes and did not believe these findings when I reported them three and a half years after the anomalous sighting event occurred. A further discovery was that the photographer had taken more than the two photos, which were not consciously recalled after the event, nor remembered to this day. This article presents the history of the investigation and the photographic analysis that led me to conclude that they had a “missing time” experience.
In her book, “The Phoenix Lights…A Skeptic’s Discovery That We Are Not Alone” (Hampton Roads Pub. Co., Charlottesville, VA, 2004, 2010), Dr. Lynne Kitei has described her sighting, along with her husband, Frank, of a group of three lights that hovered near the ground not far from their house. As she tells the story, Frank called her attention to the lights at about 8 PM the night of February 6, 1995. She looked at the lights and, as she later wrote in her book:
“I took a mental note of every nuance – size, shape, color, distance. Each sphere was an oval, between three and six feet across. They seemed to be hovering motionlessly in perfect symmetry, one on top and the other two aligned underneath, like a pyramid. The soothing amber light contained within each orb looked different from any light I had ever seen. It didn’t glare at all and was uniform throughout, reminding me of a holiday luminary that shines from within, without the light extending beyond its edge. Frank and I were in awe, mesmerized by the extraordinary scene.”
She decided she should document the sighting by taking a photo so she got her camera, which was nearby. Before she had a chance to take the first photo the top light of the triangle faded slowly from view, like a light bulb operated by a dimmer switch. Even though it was gone from sight, she had the feeling that the object was still there, “perhaps in another dimension”. She stepped onto the outside balcony and quickly took a picture of the remaining two, while her husband remained inside the bedroom. She immediately noticed an eerie silence and had a sensation that “time had stopped.” As she stared at the two bottom orbs she felt an intelligent presence staring back and thought, “Who are you, what are you, do you know that I’m here, I’d love to meet you”. The next thing she remembers is noticing that the left remaining light was fading out. She took the second photo before it disappeared.
In her original book, published in 2004, she did not state a duration for the sighting but the reader might logically conclude that it was many seconds to a few minutes at the most. She also did not mention the results of my 1998 analysis of her photos because, according to her, she did not remember details to substantiate my findings and mainly because she felt this information was much too bizarre to reveal at that time. Through the years since 1998 she has shared her photographs, without reservation, but she did not intend to ever reveal my findings with her name attached. (I did reveal my findings without mentioning the witness’ names, during my lecture at the 1999 MUFON International Symposium in Washington, D.C. I presented this as the first photographic evidence of “missing time”. Her requirement that I not mention her name argues against the idea that this was a hoax perpetrated for self-promotion.) Now, fifteen years after the event, she has decided to reveal the ‘rest of the story’ in the expanded version of her book in the hope that it will provide some useful information related to the UFO phenomenon.
In order to fully understand the significance of the information derived from this sighting it is necessary to know the history of the investigation. It began as a typical investigation of photos of unknown “UFO” lights. It was during this investigation that I discovered totally unexpected evidence of “missing time.”
PROLOGUE TO THE INVESTIGATION
In early April, 1998, I received, “out of the blue,” a phone call from Dr Lynne Kitei. She explained that she was one of several witnesses who, around 10 PM on March 13, 1997, had videotaped what has been called the “Phoenix Lights.” She then explained what I already knew, namely that there was a great controversy over whether or not the lights were individual UFOs or part of a single large UFO or if they were something else such as military flares. She said she had been involved from the beginning in the investigation of the videos and visual sightings, and had realized that there was a lot of confusion over the witness statements and over the government and Air Force reaction to the sighting reports. She asked if I would analyze her video and photos and the videos of others who had seen a massive array of unusual lights on January 14, 1998, which appeared in different formations than the March 13, 1997 sightings. She also mentioned briefly that she had video and photo evidence from other nights, including photos of a UFO that she and her husband had seen in February, 1995. (It was after the January 1998 sighting that she was referred to me for further independent evaluation. Later I learned that before she contacted me she had requested a scientific analysis of her UFO photographs and videos by Village Labs in Phoenix, by the optical sciences department at the University of Arizona in Tucson and by the Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara, CA.)
Knowing I was stepping into a “hornet’s nest” of controversy I, nevertheless, agreed to have a look. I did not promise a quick resolution of the controversy over the video data. (It’s a good thing I didn’t because the investigation took many months and much more effort than I had imagined and the controversy continues even to the time of this writing.) Several days later I received in the mail a package that included videotape, photos and other materials related to the “Phoenix Lights” sighting of March 13, 1997 and also sightings, videos and photos of similar lights that appeared on other dates. She also included the two photos from the sighting of February 6, 1995, witnessed by herself and her husband, Frank. It is these photos which are the subject of this article.
During the following months I would invest well over a hundred hours in acquiring information during phone conversations with Dr. Lynne and from a meticulous analysis of the photo and video data. I visited Phoenix twice for “on the spot” interviews and in order to make daytime comparison videos that I needed for determining sighting directions. I concentrated on analyzing the videos of March 13 and other similar videos taken on other nights so the analysis of the 1995 sighting was relegated to my “spare time”. Hence it was not until two months later that I realized there was something unexpected and really strange about those pictures.
(Although my investigation of the March 13, 1997 sighting is not the subject of this article, it should be noted that my conclusion regarding the videotaped lights, which was published in a 1999 MUFON report, was based mostly on an extensive analysis of the videos of Mike Krzysten and Chuck Rairdon. The three lights in Dr. Lynne’s 10 pm video did not seem to be correlated with the lights in the Krzysten and Rairdon videos and are considered not positively identified.)
HISTORY OF THE INVESTIGATION
The investigation of the February, 1995 sighting began with a letter to me dated April 8, 1998, in which she said the following about the 1995 sighting: “I had no interest in UFOs before I first saw one right outside my window on Feb. 6, 1995, long before the March 13, 1997 sighting.”* In a later section of the letter she provided the following description of the February sighting. “Notes” are by this author.
“On February 6, 1995, my husband called me to our bedroom window – approximately 8 PM – to witness three oval, amber objects in a pyramid or triangle formation, one on top and two closely aligned underneath. They appeared to be approximately three feet each (Note: she means 3 feet in diameter), one city block away and about 50-75 feet above the desert area on private property. They also appeared to be stationary – and, though not connected, remained equidistant throughout the sighting. The light was very different from any I had ever seen. They were soft, matt finish, with no glare. The light was also uniform throughout (Note: constant brightness over the surface). As I ran to get my 35 mm Instamatic camera (Note: she keeps a camera nearby to photograph sunset scenes) my husband called me back to witness the top orb fade from view – in place. It was as though it were disappearing into another dimension or being cloaked. It felt as if they were still there but we didn’t see them any more. I then stepped out onto the balcony, noted the silence, and took a photo (#1) of the two remaining objects. The next thing I remember, the left object started to fade and I snapped a photo (#2) of that event. It seemed only moments between the shots and they seemed to be stationary, but you will note that the objects did move (together). I do not know how much time there was between shots. When I got the pictures developed at the end of February, 1995, only picture #2 turned out. But I thought it was amazing that I did capture a photo with one object half disappeared and the third object still there. It was not until this past December, 1997 …that I went back to the bank vault (Note: this is where she has stored her photos and negatives relating to anomalous sightings since the March 13 sighting) and procured all the negatives from 1995 and 1997. I had thought that photo #1 was a photo I had taken January 23, 1997 of the huge array of equidistant lights (similar to the March 13, 1997 event) – primarily because of the similar array and location (Note: One week after the March 13 sighting, she took both the 1995 and the January 23, 1997 strips to the photo shop, at which time several additional prints were developed. Her confusion over the date of the photo 1 resulted from a small line of 4 tiny light images in the photo which appear above the city horizon, plus the fact that it had not turned out in 1995. When she got her pictures back in 1995 the negative of photo 1 had not been printed so she assumed there was nothing on it. However, it wasn’t until December 1997 that she realized that the January 1997 photo series ended with a “massive V” of 6 lights.) This was the first time that I realized that I had two photos from the February, 1995 incident. (Again, only photo #2 had been developed [sic: she means printed] at the time in 1995.) When I enlarged both of them (Note: this refers to prints of both negatives) … you could clearly see the array of amber lights in the background – four equidistant lights in the sky in #1 and two amber lights in #2 (Note: the images of the amber lights are above the images of the city lights).
Cropped versions of the two photos are shown below (Figures 1 and 2). The nearby UFO lights and the distant light “arrays” are indicated on each photo as are other lights that were used as geographic reference points in the subsequent analysis. The top two-thirds (approximately) of each photo is not shown because a careful search failed to find any images. The designations “photo 1#5” and “photo 2#8” are explained below.
My first quick analysis of these photos confirmed that the UFO lights had moved to the right during the time between exposures. Furthermore, the spacing between lights appeared to have increased slightly and an imaginary line connecting the lights was horizontal in the first photo but tilted in the second photo (see above). As for the light “arrays” above the horizon, they had changed in number. I wondered if the outer two lights in the array in photo 1 were the same as the two lights in photo 2. If so, that could be evidence that the array in photo 2 was the same as the array in photo 1 but that the inner
two lights in photo 1 had gone out by the time photo 2 was taken. I also wondered whether or not the light arrays were above the geographic horizon as determined by the mountain ridgeline.
My first detailed analysis was done on April 22. I used, for geographic reference, an evening photo, similar to Figure 3, which shows the nearby house skylights that appear in Figures 1 and 2 and the distant mountains. The location of the UFO in Figure 1 is illustrated by a triangle in Figure 3 (below) and the location in Figure 2 is illustrated by a circle. The magnification factor of the comparison photo was different from the magnification factor of Figures 1 and 2 but I was able to compensate for the difference. I then measured the height of the above-horizon light array images above the skylights and determined that the light arrays were above the mountain skyline. This meant that they could have been nearby (thousands of feet) or far away (tens of miles).
My initial analysis of the UFO lights took into account the fact that the sighting line was downward from the camera. The sighting line to the UFO in Figure 1 intersects a road at the location indicated by the triangle in Figure 3. The UFO could have been at any distance between the camera and the road but most likely closer to the road than to the camera. The sighting line to the UFO in Figure 2 ends at a bush or tree near the house that is to the right of the house with the six skylights. Hence the UFO in Figure 2 was definitely above the ground, but how far up can’t be determined since the distance to the UFO is unknown.
FIGURE 3 Evening Comparison Photo
A scale factor can be determined from the spacing of the rectangular, three foot wide skylights. The centers are spaced 4.5 ft but this length appears foreshortened to about 4.3 ft when viewed from the location of the camera. The distance to the skylights is estimated at 1,300 ft. The spacing of centers of the UFO light images in Figure 2 is about 1.7 times greater than the spacing of the skylight images which means that, if the UFO had been at the distance of the skylights, the spacing of its lights would have been about 7 ft and each light could have been several feet in diameter. If it had been closer to the camera (it probably was closer, but still hundreds of feet away) then the spacing of its lights and the diameters would have been less, e.g., at half the distance the spacing and diameters would have been half as large.
It seemed that she had turned her camera slightly to the left or had moved several inches to a foot to her left because in Figure 2 some horizon lights are visible at the left side of the dark area, an area that was blocked by a nearby tree trunk, whereas in the first photo there are no lights visible at the left of the tree.
As I studied the UFO lights I considered possible explanations. One potential explanation was that the sighting was a hoax and that there were two people on the ground with flashlights pointed toward the camera. However, considering the people involved, medical doctors who wanted no publicity and to remain anonymous (as of the time of my investigation in 1998 and my MUFON lecture in 1999) I considered the hoax explanation to be most unlikely then and still do. The most “natural” explanation for the two UFO lights in Figure 1 was that they were headlights of a car on the road. But this made no sense for two reasons: (1) Dr. Lynne would have seen the car moving and would have realized immediately what it was and (2) it would be very difficult or impossible to place a car at the UFO location in Figure 2, because the sighting took place over bushes and trees on the rocky desert terrain of a private residence below her mountainside home. Furthermore, the UFO lights do not look like car headlights. This became apparent when I studied the car headlight image that appears in the comparison photo (taken in the summer of 1998). She took the picture when there happened to be a car on the road that was quite close to the location where the UFO would have been had it been on the road at the location of the triangle. The car headlights look quite different from the UFO lights: they make a larger, brighter image and they illuminate the road (see Figure 3), unlike the UFO light, which appears “self-contained” and does not illuminate anything around it. I concluded that the UFO lights remained unexplained.
About a week after I completed my initial analysis of these two photos I had another discussion with Dr. Lynne. According to my phone notes of April 29, she said that the top light of the triangle faded from view without moving. She recalled that, when she went onto the balcony to take the first photo, there was an eerie silence and she found herself thinking, “Who are you? Why are you here?”
FIRST TIME LINE
As of this point in my investigation the history of the 1995 sighting could be summarized by the following timeline:
1) While she was taking a bath at about 8:00 PM, her husband saw a triangle of amber lights between him and the ground a thousand or so feet away. He was looking basically southwestward and downward from the large glass window in the second floor of their mountainside home that overlooks Phoenix, Arizona.
2) He called to her and she came to the window and saw the triangle.
3) She realized she was looking at something truly unusual and immediately thought of running downstairs to get the video camera. But she didn’t want to miss anything. She felt, at the time, that it was important to take a mental picture of the lights and describes them as oval shaped, soft uniform amber color throughout with no glare. Most unique, the light did not extend outside the edge. They appeared to be three distinct lights or lighted objects closely aligned in a pyramid formation and seeming to be stationary. She then decided to run to get her Instamatic camera which was sitting on a ledge just inside her closet several feet away. She ran for the camera and just as she reached it her husband called her back to see the top light disappearing.
4) She ran back to the large picture window just in time to see the top light fade out slowly, somewhat like a light operated by a dimmer switch.. Her feeling was that it was still there but that she could not see it because it had become invisible to the human eye. However the two lower lights were still there so she opened the patio door and went onto the balcony to take a picture (Figure 1). She was enthralled by the lights and never took her eyes off them. The picture also shows four lights above the horizon which she did not notice at the time.
5) She immediately noted an eerie silence as if time had stopped and she felt as if there were an intelligent presence emanating from the lights. She had thoughts such as, “who are you, where are you from, do you know that I am here, I would love to meet you.”
6) Then she noticed that the left hand light of the remaining pair started to get dimmer so she quickly took another picture, which shows the two lights with the image of the light at the left being a bit smaller than the image of the right side light. Since the size of the image of a small or distant bright light generally increases (decreases) with increasing (decreasing) brightness, the smaller size indicates less brightness. The spacing between the centers of the images of the lights is a bit greater than in the previous photo, suggesting that the UFO might have been a bit closer during the second photo. In this picture there are also two lights above the horizon which she did not notice at the time.
7) The left hand light went out and shortly after that the right hand light went out and that was the end of the sighting. She described the “going out” or “turning off” of the lights as if one used a dimmer switch to get a continuous brightness decrease slow enough to see as opposed to the sudden turn-off of a light bulb operated by an ordinary on-off switch. She had the feeling for several weeks afterward that they were still there but were invisible as if they had traveled into another dimension.
8) She and her husband estimated the total time was no more than 3 minutes.
9) She was excited about the sighting but her husband became agitated at the mention of it and was reluctant to talk about it
10) The pictures were developed about 2 weeks later. Only one of the pictures (Figure 2) was printed so she thought that the others showed nothing. In fact, she was told by the print shop that the other negative strips were completely blank. (Note: there are several pictures in each strip. If a strip had one good picture and several blanks the strip was saved.)
11) She disposed of what she thought were blank strips and placed the print (Figure 2) and the remaining negatives into a photo packet and placed that into her den cabinet, with dozens of other photo packets, for safe keeping.
12) She told her father, her brother and sister-in-law and several close friends about the event. She also shared the story and the one picture that had been printed with several friends and family in August 1996 while they were visiting her home after her father’s funeral.
DISCOVERY OF “MISSING TIME”
After the above initial investigation of the 1995 sighting I turned to analysis of the 1997 and 1998 sighting videos and photos for the next several weeks. It was during the second week of June that I returned to the 1995 sighting. I decided to more carefully analyze the above-horizon lights in the two photos. I wanted to determine whether or not these lights had moved in altitude and/or horizontal position during the time between the photos. Figure 1 shows four reddish lights in a horizontal line close together and Figure 2 shows two lights, separated by a distance greater than the spacing of the two outer lights in the line of 4 in Figure 1. In order to determine whether or not the above horizon lights had moved I needed some reference lights on the city horizon. I also wanted to be certain that the magnifications of the two pictures were equal so I needed to find the images of two lights that appear on each photo. The ratio of the measured spacing between two particular light images in Figure 2 to the spacing of the same images in Figure 1 would be the ratio of magnifications of the pictures, a ratio that I needed in order to determine if there had been any changes in the locations and spacing of the above-horizon lights. (Ideally, the ratio of magnifications would be 1.) For the best accuracy the particular light images had to be separated by a considerable distance on each photo. I therefore spent a considerable amount of time carefully examining the images of the city lights in the photos in an attempt to locate specific horizon lights or groups of lights which appeared in both Figure 1 and Figure 2.
As I was searching I was finding it difficult to locate individual lights or light groups that appeared in both photos. Gradually I realized that something was "wrong" with the horizon lights in the second photo: there were groups of city lights in the first photo that didn’t appear in the second photo. As I pondered this fact, the thought occurred to me that the horizon lights wouldn’t change that much in only 3 minutes. Suddenly I realized the “impossible:” it was not just a few minutes between pictures, it was many minutes, maybe hours!
I was flabbergasted, astounded and perplexed at this discovery that was at such odds with the story as told by Dr. Lynne. How could they not have known that there was a long time between photos? This again raised the possibility of a hoax wherein, for some reason it took some time to move whatever structure that held the UFO lights in Figure 1 to the location shown in Figure 2. I decided to call her again and probe this further without telling her what I had discovered. It was June 15 in the early evening when I called. According to my phone notes (edited for clarity) she had the following to say about the sighting:
She was so focused on looking at the orbs/lights that she felt as if time had stopped and the lights seemed to be stationary. Her husband doesn’t want to talk about it. He recalls that the lights were amber in color. He saw it first, an amber triangle. He knew they were close to the house. He made a joke out of it and didn’t want to talk about it. She mentioned that there was a middle picture showing nothing. (Note: this is the first mention of another picture.) I asked, do you have any recollection of what happened after the first photo? She responded, “yes,” and proceeded, once again, to recount the sighting. Before she got the camera she consciously tried to take everything in. She took note of color – amber – and oval in shape. They were closely aligned but in another sense they were together but not attached. She remembered the 35 mm camera and grabbed it. When coming back to the window she watched the top light go out. The top one didn’t go anywhere. (Note: it didn’t go away from its position, it simply faded out.) She went outside (Note: onto the balcony) and took a picture of the two lights that remained. Outside there was no sound, as if time had stopped. She was thinking, who are you, what are you, etc. She doesn’t recall anything (else) but then the left light started to disappear. She thought for a few seconds, who are you, even though she had never thought about UFOs or ET’s before. She doesn’t know about time lost. When she brings it up to her husband he is anxious about it. Not his pillar of strength character. He really didn’t want to talk about it for 2 years up to January, 1997, when the lights came back. (Note: in January, 1997, she had a sighting of above-horizon lights which were similar to and in the same location as those in her video of March 13, 1997 and similar to the above-horizon lights in the 1995 photos.)
(Note: at this point in the conversation I tried to jog whatever memory she might have of a time period longer than 3 minutes.) I told her that the second picture had not been taken from the same place as the first. She said, “Maybe I moved.” We then both looked at the photos and agreed that it looked as if she hadn’t moved laterally but that, nevertheless, there was time (between photos) because the lights changed. Finally, we decided that she rotated the camera to the left and the conversation ended.
I concluded from this conversation that she didn’t know about the long time between the photos. Later that night (June 15) I sent her an email message that began with comments related to the March 13, 1997 sightings, and then I “dropped the bomb.” Here is the message:
I have been looking more at Feb. 1995. Something strange here. You say you were particularly alert, trying to keep track of what was going on, yet you don’t recall any more of what might have occurred during the sighting or taking other photos. However, I noted that the lights on the horizon change quite a bit… in fact only a few lights are really correlated in brightness, suggesting a considerable time between pictures, not just a few minutes! And then, you may not have moved sideways, or, if you did, it was only a small amount, but you clearly pointed the camera in a slightly different direction, more to the left in the second photo even though the lights apparently moved to the right.
The next day she wrote me a letter in which she discussed the 1997 sightings but said nothing about the 1995 sighting. She called me two days later, late on the 17th of June, and most of the discussion was related to the March 13, 1997 sighting. However, she briefly referred to the changes in the horizon lights and the implication of a long time between two photos as “heavy stuff.”
Yes, heavy, and she was only beginning to realize the “weight” of this discovery. In some sense, the deep investigation of this case was, at this point, just beginning!
These are the details of what I had discovered up to this time. While carefully studying the individual lights and groups of light in the two photos I was able to find many groups of horizon lights that appeared in both photos. However, I also found that there were some clusters of horizon lights that were in Figure 1 (“first photo”) and not in Figure 2 (“second photo”) and also some in Figure 2 that were not in Figure 1. Figure 4 illustrates the comparison between the horizon lights in Figures 1 and 2. To create Figure 4 I scanned each photo at 300 dpi for good resolution and cut off the top two thirds of each since it shows no images. Notice that there is a dark area (no horizon lights) at the left end of Figure 1 and that there is a dark area at the left side of Figure 2 that is bracketed by horizon lights. These areas are dark because there is a tree several feet from the balcony close to the location where Dr. Lynne stood that blocked her view of part of the horizon. By studying the location of the tree image in each photo I concluded that, after taking “photo 1” she both rotated the camera to the left and moved to the left several inches to maybe a foot (exact distance not known) even though the UFO evidently moved in the opposite direction.
FIGURE 4 Comparison of Horizon Lights
Figure 4 illustrates with long vertical white lines the most prominent of the light clusters in Figure 1 that do not appear or are noticeably dimmer in Figure 2 . The same figure indicates by short white lines the most prominent light clusters in Figure 2 that do not appear (or are noticeably dimmer) in Figure 1. The two photos were left-right aligned using a “driveway light” (see Figure 1) that appears in both photos. The accuracy of alignment is illustrated by the vertical white line labeled “A.”
The horizon lights of a large city do not change appreciably over a time period of only a few minutes. (The horizon lights are mainly streetlights, building lights, parking lot lights and so on, but are not headlights of moving vehicles.) Knowing this, I began to suspect that the time between Figures 1 and 2 was considerably greater than the several minutes recalled by Drs. Lynne and Frank. Instead, it seemed to me that the time could have been as long as several hours. For comparison with the change of horizon lights during a “non-UFO” night, see the Appendix, which contains two series of photos obtained during two nights.
Because this “bizarre” discovery needed all the confirmation there could be, I suggested to Dr. Lynne that she do an experiment to find out just how rapidly the horizon would change. The experiment was simple: take a series of pictures separated by 15 minutes or half an hour from 8 PM to 11 PM or midnight. Then we could find out whether or not the horizon changed under controlled (non-UFO) conditions and, if so, when and by how much. Of course, these pictures would be taken more than 3 years after the 1995 pictures, so one might expect to find some differences, but if I were correct there should still be a general tendency of the lights or light groups to go out slowly as the evening progressed.
DISCOVERY OF ANOTHER PHOTO
On June 22 Dr. Lynne called and the discussion centered around the 1997 and 1998 videos. However, she also mentioned that her husband was very busy as a practitioner and medical director and he didn’t want to talk about the 1995 event. In fact, she said she was “surprised by his degree of reluctance” to talk about it. She called again the next day to talk about the initial results of my investigation into the March 13 events but there was no discussion of the 1995 sighting.
The next day she called and we briefly discussed the 1995 sighting. She pointed out again that Frank believed it was only several minutes but she agreed that the horizon was different in the second photo, as I had claimed. She said that at the time of the sighting she was so focused on the close amber lights that she never noticed the horizon or above city lights. There was, however, an eerie silence as if time had stopped.
Then, on June 30, fifteen days after I revealed my discovery to her, I received a letter that described her reaction to my claim that there was a long time between photos. She also described the results of her photographic experiment.
“Your astounding evaluation of my ’95 photos is still sinking in. When I went back and really studied the skyline, (I found that) your analysis is absolutely correct. There is a significant difference. Many lights are out in the second photo. I never really thought about it before. As I have said since the incident, my call was that from the time Frank saw the three oval amber lights in a pyramid formation outside our bedroom window to the time they all faded from view SEEMED to be (a) three to four minute span – max. It SEEMED to happen fairly quickly. As I shared with you, Frank and I have not discussed this sighting in detail – only that it did happen. When I told him what you said his initial reaction was that it was definitely only two or three minutes total. As you have noted from looking at the pictures that small time period seems unlikely. Neither of us can remember what specifically happened after the sighting. We do not remember looking at a clock, so we have no time reference. The only thing I am pretty sure of is that I usually take a bath between 7:30 and 8 pm. I was just getting out when Frank first called me to the window to look at the triangle of lights. (emphasis in the original)”
“I ran the experiment as you suggested. I started at 8:10 PM when it finally got dark (Note: this was June. The original sighting occurred in February, when the sunset is at 6 pm and it is totally dark by 7 pm) and continued every 10 minutes until the roll ran out at 11 pm. It just so happened (coincidence?) that the neighbor turned off her skylights early that night - around 9:30 – 9:40 pm. (Note: the skylights would usually be on until midnight, but her grandchildren were visiting so they turned them off early that night.) She verbally confirmed that with me this morning. The picture at 9:40 pm will give you a definite reference point in time. Please let me know if the pix help. The skyline doesn’t seem to change all that much until after 10:30 pm. Could we have had all that missing time?”
(Note: during this part of the investigation, Dr. Lynne had checked to see if there were any images in the supposedly blank strips that remained. She found that there were images that hadn’t been printed.)
“What makes this whole thing even more intriguing (if that’s possible) is the picture I took in between the two on Feb. 6, 1995. (Note: the negative is attached to the photo 2/8 [Figure 2] and appears blank but actually contains an image.) I have included a copy for your review. I had the developer work on it till she got something and as you can see there seems to be two lights next to each other on the bottom right of the pix – where the unknowns would have been. But nothing else showed up. What do you think about that?”
On July 2, during a further extensive discussion of the 1997 and 1998 sightings and videos, she mentioned that during the 1995 sighting she felt excited and safe, whereas “it was unnerving” to watch the lights appearing during the January, 1997 sighting. She was a bit apprehensive because there had never been an explanation for the close 1995 sighting and now there was a massive array of similar lights in the distance.
(Note: during the morning after this January 23, 1997 sighting, Dr. Lynne talked to air traffic controllers at Sky Harbor International Airport who witnessed what appeared to be the same lights at the same time. They reported that the huge points of light appeared at 1,000 feet altitude over Class B restricted airspace and seemed to be attached to something, but they could not see what they were attached to as the formation of lights turned together and then moved in synchrony slowly behind South Mountain Range).
The enclosed photo is shown below. The photo has been cropped to show only the pair of lights. There is absolutely no other image in the photo.
FIGURE 5 Pair of UFO Lights (?)
This photo was a puzzle. Because of its location in the strips of negatives, this photo was taken between the other two. Yet, she could not recall taking the picture. Furthermore, it shows no horizon lights. That would imply that she had tilted the camera upward far enough so that the horizon lights were below the edge of the picture. If those were the UFO lights, had they moved up into the sky?
DISCOVERY OF OTHER PHOTOS
For the next several weeks the investigation concentrated on the 1997 sighting. Then, on July 31, the investigation returned to the 1995 sighting. Dr. Lynne reviewed the situation with the negatives. She said that when she got the negatives (and prints) in February, 1995, the lady at the developing shop said that they had had problems finding any images in them so they had only printed a couple of the seemingly blank negatives (Figures 1 and 2). I had asked her, many weeks before, to make contact prints of the two photos so I could determine whether or not they were of the same exact magnification. During a period of many weeks (extending into August), while in the process of answering my request, she made another very surprising discovery: there were two rolls of film used that night! The two rolls were both ISO 200, 35 mm film, but the edge markings were different. (One would expect that she would have known this, but she takes many photos and did not file the negatives as diligently as she should. In addition, she had disposed of a number of presumed ‘blank’ strips and placed the prints and remaining negatives in an envelope she got from the photo shop. (Note: a roll of film was cut into strips of 4 or so negatives at the photo shop.) Hence, at the time she first contacted me, she was under the impression that both pictures (Figures 1 and 2) came from the same roll even though they weren’t on the same strip.
But then, after carefully examining the negatives she found that what had been called the first photo (Figure 1) was #5 on the first roll (Figure 1 is now called roll 1 #5 or simply 1/5) and what had been called the “second” or “last” photo (Figure 2) was actually #8 on the second roll (Figure 2 is now called roll 2 #8 or simply 2/8). Furthermore, the new UFO photo was #7 on the second roll, just before #8 (i.e., 2/7)!
Subsequent investigation over a period of weeks added to the mystery of what happened that night. Dr. Lynne sent me a copy of the original photo shop package that indicated that there were in fact two rolls of film developed at that time. On the first roll there are two nice pictures of the sunset on some day before Feb. 6 (photos 1/1 and 1/2). Then there are two pictures of the palm tree outside their bedroom window (photos 1/3 and 1/4, presumably taken before Feb. 6). Then there is the UFO photo (Figure 1), now designated as 1/5, followed by two more enigmatic negatives with images: 1/6 (Figure 6)
FIGURE 6 Photo 1/6
FIGURE 7 Photo 1/7
and 1/7 (Figure 7). Photos 1/6 and 1/7 have very dim images of the upper level of what appears to be the skyline lights at the bottom of the picture and nothing else. (The above horizon lights do not appear. Perhaps they were too dim to register on the photo when the camera was, I presume, used with the telephoto setting; see below.) They do not show the UFO lights, perhaps because the UFO lights were considerably below the horizon and thus were below the field of view of the camera. Apparently, for some reason, Dr. Lynne had tilted the camera upward a few degrees after she took photo 1/5. Furthermore, the spacings of identifiable horizon light groups in 1/6 and 1/7 are about 1.8 times greater than in 1/5 (or 2/8). Although I have no proof (she had disposed of the camera long before my investigation began because the flash never worked after the close 1995 sighting), I assume that she switched to a telephoto capability of the camera (many simple "Instamatic" type cameras have a "close up" or "zoom" lens position). The images of the horizon lights in 1/6 and 1/7 are much dimmer than the images of the same lights in 1/5 (or 2/8). This dimming is consistent with the increased magnification of the telephoto setting. (The assumed telephoto setting would have nearly doubled the focal length, making the spacings of images nearly double, but the aperture would not also increase, so the effective f# of the lens would increase by nearly two, thereby decreasing the exposure level of the film by a factor of four.) The negatives of photos 1/8 through 1/14 show absolutely nothing at all, and the negatives 1/15 through 1/24 are missing. (She used 24 shot rolls of film.) I presume that the photo store where she had the film developed could see no images and so did not print any of the photos after 1/7. I also presume that she simply threw away the negatives from 1/15 to the end since there were no prints. As pointed out above, she does recall disposing of blank (or seemingly blank) negatives in 1995.
The first 6 negatives in roll 2 are missing, probably thrown away (no prints). Then photo 2/7 (Figure 5) shows what may be the two UFO lights and nothing else and photo 2/8 (Figure 2) shows the two horizon lights and the close UFO lights, as described above. These photos were taken at the same focal length as photo 1/5.
FIGURE 9 Photo 2/9
Photo 2/9 (Figure 9), evidently with a flash, shows the palm tree in their front yard as seen from their veranda (as in photos 1/3 and 1/4, but those were taken without the telephoto lens). At the bottom of 2/9 are horizon lights, as in 2/8, and also the two above-horizon lights that appear in 2/8. However the larger spacings of the horizon and above-horizon lights indicate that once again the (assumed) telephoto capability was used. I assume that 2/9 was taken shortly (within minutes?) after 2/8. As with photos 1/6 and 1/7, the horizon lights are very dim. Following 2/9 are four family photos taken after Feb. 6.
SECOND TIME LINE
The above discoveries about the photos indicate that the timeline given before is incomplete. The revised timeline follows:
1) While Dr. Lynne was taking a bath at about 8:00 PM, her husband saw a triangle of amber lights between him and the ground a thousand feet away or so. He was looking basically southwestward and downward from the large glass window in the second floor of their mountainside home that overlooks Phoenix, Arizona.
2) He called Lynne and she came to the window and saw the triangle.
3) She realized she was looking at something truly unusual and immediately thought of running downstairs to get the video camera. But she didn’t want to miss anything. She felt, at the time, that it was important to take a mental picture of the lights and describes them as oval shaped, soft uniform amber color throughout with no glare. The light did not extend outside the edge of each object. They appeared to be three distinct lights (objects) closely aligned in a pyramid formation and seeming to be stationary. She then decided to run to get her Instamatic camera which was sitting on a ledge just inside her closet several feet away. She ran for the camera and, just as she reached it, her husband called her back to see the top light disappearing.
4) She ran back to the large picture window just in time to see the top light fading slowly from view, somewhat like a light operated by a dimmer switch. Her feeling was that it was still there but that she could not see it because it had become invisible to the human eye. However, the other two bottom lights were still there so she opened the patio door and went onto the balcony to take a picture (Figure 1 or 1/5). She was enthralled by the lights and never took her eyes off them. The picture also shows four lights above the horizon which she did not notice at the time.
5) She immediately noted an eerie silence as if time had stopped and felt an intelligent presence emanating from the lights. She had thoughts such as, “who are you, what are you, where are you from, do you know that I am here, I would love to meet you.” (Perhaps at this time she entered an altered state of consciousness that caused her to forget what happened next.)
6) She apparently changed the camera to its "close up" setting and took another photo (1/6; Figure 5) and then another (1/7; Figure 6), both of these with the camera tilted upward several degrees such that only the highest horizon lights appear at the bottom of the photo. Nothing else appears in these photos.
7) She continued to take pictures, eventually running out of film. We don’t know what these other pictures showed, if anything, because the pictures were not printed and the strips were thrown away. They may have been pictures of the dark sky. Why she would have taken pictures of “nothing” is not known. Perhaps she was trying to photograph some object that was too dark to make an image on the film. (Another, remote, possibility is that the automatic rewind capability of the camera spontaneously rewound the film much earlier in the roll than normal.)
8) At an unknown time she turned around, opened the sliding glass door, grabbed another roll of film (usually kept on a ledge right inside the patio door for convenience in photographing sunsets), opened the camera, took out the first roll, and inserted the second roll, while stepping back onto the balcony.
9) At an unknown time she reset the focal length of the camera to normal (not telephoto).
10) At unknown times she took 6 photos on the second roll (all missing; one presumes that the photo shop didn’t see any images and didn’t print the negatives and so Dr. Lynne threw them away).
11) At an unknown time she took another photo (2/7; Figure 4) which may show the two lights of the UFO and nothing else with the camera on its normal lens setting. This negative was mostly blank and was saved only because it was (is) directly attached to photo 2/8.
12) At an unknown time, probably an hour or more after photo 1/5, she regained her normal conscious state! From this time on she recalls what happened.
13) She noticed that the left side UFO light was getting dimmer so she quickly took another picture, photo 2/8 (Figure 2) which shows the two lights of the UFO (initially the base of the triangle), with the left hand light image a bit smaller than the right hand light image. By this time the UFO had moved to the right a short distance. Also, by this time, several groups of lights on the horizon had gone out indicating that there was a considerable time between photo 1/5 and 2/8. There are two dim red above-horizon lights that Dr. Lynne did not notice at the time.
14) The close left side light went out and shortly after that the remaining light went out and that was the end of the sighting. She vaguely remembers watching the last UFO light hovering motionless, but does not recall what occurred after that.
15) At some later time she took another photo (2/9) which shows the palm tree. She used a flash and a normal focal length lens setting. The camera was tilted upward such that only the highest lights on the horizon appear at the bottom of the photo. This also shows the two above-horizon lights that appear in 2/8. She does not recall taking this photo.
16) She doesn’t recall exactly what happened after that but she had the feeling for weeks that the close orbs were still there but she couldn’t see them.
17) She and Frank thought the sighting had lasted a couple of minutes.
18) She was excited about the sighting but her husband became agitated at the mention of it and was reluctant to talk about it
19) She took family pictures and then the two rolls of film were developed about 2 weeks later. Only a few pictures were printed and she thought that she had only a single photo of the UFO, the photo 2/8.
20) As she was advised by a professional photo lab that a number of the strips were blank, she disposed of some and placed the remaining pictures (prints and negatives) in her den cabinet along with her numerous other photos.
21) She told her father, her brother and sister-in-law and several close friends about the event. She also shared the story and photo 2/8 with several friends and family in August 1996 while they were visiting her home after her father’s funeral.
Items 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 and 15 in the list above and the long time duration implied by the differences in horizon lights in photo 1/5 as compared to 2/8 were "discoveries" made during this investigation, about three and a half years after the sighting. Naturally one wonders how, under ordinary ("non-UFO") conditions a person could completely forget running out of film, opening the camera, changing film, closing the camera and then taking more pictures.
This is a unique UFO sighting. It involves two witnesses who consciously recall a relatively brief sighting of a strange group of three lights which may or may not have been attached to a single object. One witness recalls taking two photos. She thought that only the second picture came out because that is the only one that the photo shop printed. However, in December 1997, months after the statewide mass sighting event when she began to look through her photo archive she discovered that there were actually two pictures of the lights. Two photos of the lights taken during a 3 minute sighting was what I was told at the beginning of the investigation. Not until I studied the two photos in an effort to determine the relative magnification factors did I or anyone suspect that there was more to the sighting. Comparison of the city horizon lights in the two pictures indicated that the time between them was much more than 3 minutes. In fact the time duration was probably an hour or more. Essentially, the horizon lights acted like a clock** that provided a very coarse estimate of the time between the photos. The difference in time between the hour (?; or more) between the photos and the 3 minutes estimated by the witnesses is called “missing time,” time during which “things happened” that the witnesses could not recall. Further investigation of the rolls of film turned up only a part of the “things that happened” during the missing time, specifically that more pictures were taken and film rolls were changed. What else happened is a matter for further investigation.
The fact that we don’t know everything that happened does not make this a unique sighting; the knowledge of what happened during most missing time sightings is incomplete. What makes this case unique is the fact that the discovery of missing time came as a result of photo analysis.
* Dr. Lynne says that prior to her 1995 close sighting, she had no interest or knowledge of the UFO phenomenon. For the past 13 years - since the 1997 AZ mass sighting - she has pushed her successful medical career aside to devote her time, monies, and expertise to extensively researching the topic, collecting compelling data, authoring a bestselling book, producing, writing and directing an internationally award winning documentary, as well as becoming one of the leading spokespersons for the Phoenix Lights and other unexplained phenomena.
**When I mentioned to an abduction researcher that this seemed to be the first photographically documented case of "missing time" he commented, in a humorous vein, "Oh, did she, perhaps, photograph a clock?" I thought for a second and responded, perhaps a bit more seriously, "Yes, of a sort."
TEMPORAL VARIATIONS OF THE SKYLINE
The variations in the skylines in photos 1/5 and 2/8 are apparent, as indicated in Figure 4. It has been proposed above that these changes are indicative of a time period between photos which was more than just several minutes. This proposition has been tested on “non-UFO” nights. Two series of photos were taken periodically during the evenings of two days. These were taken from the same location as the photos discussed above (the balcony on Dr. Lynne’s house). Several of the comparison photos are shown below. First presented are photos of the skyline taken during July, 1998. This was obviously several years after the UFO photos but horizon changes over hours should be similar. In the picture below there are white vertical lines that indicate many of the light groups that changed. Note that there is one group that was on at 8:20 PM and turned off before 9:20 PM. Of course the actual turnoff time is not known from the available photographic information. This light group could, in principle, have turned off only a minute or so after 8:20 PM, although it is unlikely that it did so. However, there are 6 groups that did not turn off until some time after 9:20 PM (and before 10:20 PM).
FIGURE A1 Skyline variations in July, 1998
The six lines provide evidence that the skyline in general changes slowly during the evening.
FIGURE A2 Skyline variations for February 1999
The results of a second series of photos is shown above. This series was taken during February, 1999, to provide as close a comparison as possible to the appearance of the skyline in February, 1995. This series started at 8:00 PM. Again, one light group went off “early,” in this case before 8:30 PM. Then there were two groups that turned off between 8:30 and 9:00 PM. Three more groups turned off after 9 PM. Other changes may be noted during a careful inspection of these photos. In particular, there are groups of lights which were not on when the first photo of a series was taken and which turned on many minutes to an hour or so after the first picture.
The above series of photos confirm the assertion made above that the configuration of horizon city lights changes slowly during the evening. The results of these experiments indicate that there could have been many minutes to hours of “missing time” between photo 1/5 and photo 2/8.