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Kathleen Marden

(2 Hours, 13 Minutes)

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In anticipation of the upcoming Exeter UFO Festival, BoA:Audio welcomes Kathleen Marden, the niece of Betty and Barney Hill, for an in-depth discussion on the iconic abduction case which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. Kathleen, who has had an invaluable first hand perspective on the case, takes us through the entire experience in breathtaking detail, covering the initial incident, the subsequent years of investigation by NICAP and Ufologists, the historic and terrifying hypnosis sessions with Dr. Simon, the traumatic 'outing' at the hands of unscrupulous press, the overnight celebrity bestowed upon the couple, and Barney's tragic demise which led to even more bizarre incidents for Betty Hill. Plus, of course, tons and tons more.

It's a comprehensive discussion with Kathleen Marden, a researcher who was afforded an amazing first hand perspective on one of the Ufology's most historic events of all time.

Full Preview: We kick things off with some bio / background on Kathleen Marden, beyond merely her intimate connection to the Hill case. Kathleen recounts how she actually heard of the close encounter the day after it happened, traces her career as a social worker and educator, and brings us back around to the mid-1980's, when her interest in the Hill case was reinvigorated. Kathy also recalls how, from that point, she embarked on a comprehensive investigation into the case, with help from Betty Hill and her tremendous collection of files pertaining to the case. She also details her comparative analysis on Betty and Barney Hill's original hypnosis tapes as well as dream recollections from Betty, which skeptics claim laid the groundwork for the abduction story.

Bringing the listeners fully up to speed on the Hill case, we have Kathleen recount the original event, which she does with remarkable and breathtaking detail. Kathy takes us throughout the entire evening, from the initial UFO sighting to the terrifying close encounter with the craft to the abrupt blackout and period of missing time to the next morning's confusion over what exactly had happened the previous night. Kathy also details some of the intriguing physical evidence from the encounter which suggests something truly anomalous occurred.

Taking us back to her own role in this historic event, Kathy tells us about how she first heard about the encounter, via a phone call her mother received on the very day that Betty and Barney had returned home from the fateful trip. She also recalls her family visiting Betty and Barney two days after the abduction took place and the remarkably specific details, from his conscious memory, that Barney mentioned about the encounter. We find out what Kathleen's family thought of Betty and Barney's story as well as what concerned them about the encounter.

Looking at one bizarre aspect of the Betty and Barney Hill story, Kathy shares the story of how, a few months after the encounter, the couple returned home to find Betty's earrings, which she wore on the night of the abduction, sitting on the kitchen table under a pile of dead leaves. We also speculate on who the "suspects" could be for such a bizarre action and, depending on who did it, what the implications of that might be.

We then continue onward with the chronology of the Hill case as we find out why the couple decided to report their case to authorities and how it ended up being brought to the attention of the UFO researchers at NICAP. Kathleen also reveals the chronology of when the couple actually became interested in using hypnosis to learn more about what happened to them and the timing is likely to surprise most listeners. Kathleen also notes the historical impact, within UFO studies, of NICAP looking at a UFO encounter that involved the sighting of beings.

Next, we talk about the Hills turn to hypnosis as a means of unlocking the memories of their encounter as well as dealing with the post-traumatic stress involved in the entire affair. Kathleen provides some deep insight into the work of the Hill's therapist, Dr. Simon, who was an acclaimed nueropsychiatrist. We also find out what Dr. Simon's initial perspective was on the case. Kathleen also clarifies and explains how Barney underwent hypnoanalysis rather than hypnotherapy with Dr. Simon. Kathleen also provides a number of details surrounding the hypnosis sessions, which went on for about six months.

Moving along in the timeline of this remarkable story, we find out about how the Hills' story was told, without their consent or permission, by a newspaper article in 1965. She reflects on how devastating this turn of events was for Betty and Barney and reveals how the couple reacted. Kathleen takes us to the living room of her grandparents' home on that evening, where the family debated what to do about their story being revealed in the paper. She also theorizes on how the reporter got his information and tells us about Stan Friedman's attempts, in later years, to get the reporter to reveal his sources.

Following that, we get meta and examine the issue of abductees being treated as 'specimens' rather than human beings by the research community. Kathleen talks about how troubling it was for Barney to listen to his hypnosis tapes with researchers in the room and how there are some common misconceptions about how Barney reacted on the night of the incident. (Note: At this point in the interview, we experienced some very strange technical difficulties, where Kathleen's line would cut out while answering this specific question. We've left some of them in the final audio, in order to best capture Kathleen's complete answer as well as the strange nature of the difficulties.)

Getting things back to the chronology of the Betty and Barney Hill story, we learn about how, after being outed by the newspaper, they decided to get pro-active and tell their story to the public and media. Kathleen explains how these turn of events led the Hills to John Fuller writing The Interrupted Journey, which told their story and ended up becoming a New York Times bestseller. She also talks about how this frenzy over their story ended up leading to the Hills becoming quasi-celebrities, which had a detrimental effect on Barney's health, possibly leading to his death at the age of 46.

This leads to discussion on how Barney's death changed Betty's life, especially in light of the UFO incident, as she was no longer part of a tandem and was forced to defend and talk about their encounter by herself. Kathleen then reveals how some truly bizarre and troubling events began to unfold at Betty's house following Barney's death. Kathleen ventures a guess as to who was behind these strange events and speculates on the motives behind them. (Note: Eerily, this was the only other area of discussion where our phone conversation began cutting out once again).

Looking at the Betty and Barney Hill case from a big picture perspective, as the ushering in of the 'abduction era,' we have Kathleen provide her thoughts on how the abduction phenomenon has changed over the last few decades. Given that this year marks the 50th anniversary of the Betty and Barney Hill case, we have Kathleen ponder the legacy of this monumental UFO event. We also find out if any new information about the case has come to light in recent years, so long after the event took place. Looking again, at the historical aspects of the case, Kathleen tells us about the remaining physical evidence from the case as well as analysis that was done on Betty's dress from that night. Kathleen also provides a detailed look at Marjorie Fish's Star Map work.

Heading towards the close, Kathleen talks about the Betty and Barney Hill historical plaque that was recently erected in New Hampshire. She details how arduous the process was and how the small paragraph on the marker had to be extensively sourced. Kathleen previews the upcoming 50th Anniversary Celebration of the Betty and Barney Hill case, which will take place on September 23rd at the Indian Head Resort in Lincoln, NH. She also previews the Exeter UFO Festival, which will take place on September 3rd in Exeter, New Hampshire. And, closing out the conversation, we find out what's next for Kathleen Marden as 2011 comes to a close and 2012 looms on the horizon.

Kathleen Marden Bio

Scientific Ufologist Kathleen Marden earned her B.A. in Social Work at the University of New Hampshire in 1971. Thereafter, she entered into graduate studies in Education at the University of Cincinnati, and later, at U.N.H. She began her professional career as a social worker and eventually entered the field of education as a teacher. Later, she was promoted to a supervisory position, coordinating education programs and supervising education staff.

She left her job in 1990 to pursue a career as a UFO investigator, researcher and writer. She taught adult education classes on UFO and abduction history, and for 10 years volunteered as the Mutual UFO Network's Director of Field Investigator Training. In 2003, MUFON publicly recognized Kathy for her most outstanding contribution of advancing the scientific study of the UFO phenomenon by dedicating the annual MUFON International UFO Proceedings to her.

As the niece of Betty and Barney Hill, Kathy had the opportunity to observe and learn from many of the great late abduction researchers in action. As such, she has been able to present substantial evidence that the Betty and Barney Hill UFO abduction was possibly a veridical experience. Her 2007 book Captured! The Betty and Barney Hill UFO Experience, with coauthor Stanton T. Friedman is a case study of her aunt and uncle's 1961 UFO close encounter and abduction.

In 2010, Kathy co-authored Science Was Wrong with Stan Friedman. 2011 brought a new book, UFOs and Aliens, with a chapter on alien abduction by Kathy. Her new DVD, "In Their Own Words" was released in June 2011. Kathy has appeared on dozens of television and radio programs in the US, Canada and Europe, including the History and Discovery channels, NH Chronicle, FOX News and Coast to Coast AM. Additionally, she has lectured at major conferences and colleges throughout the United States.

Her website is kathleen-marden.com

Next Week:

Butch Witkowski

Ufologist Butch Witkoski joins for a discussion on his research into the
controversial 'human mutilation' phenomenon.

BoA : Audio, Season Six archive