MEMORIES OF THE REINCARNATED PILOT - NUMBERS 2 and 3
Gord Heath recalls many strange events occurring throughout his life. Heath, a computer systems engineer presently living in Vancouver, was born in Fort William in the Spring of 1954, about nine months after the Kinross incident.
The Sleeping Giant
I have a picture of the Sleeping Giant that was taken from the park in Port Arthur where I believe we were the day of this recalled memory. The park has been radically changed from 1956. Back then, there was just a muddy shoreline and a more natural park like surroundings. The Sleeping Giant is a mountainous landform at the south end of the Sibley Pennisula, which is an Ontario Provincial Park with an excellent campground.
I was born in Fort William, Ontario, which is now part of Thunder Bay. The city is an inland port at the head of Lake Superior. Our family sometimes went to a park or beach on Lake Superior. The park overlooked the Sleeping Giant; the profile of the landform looks very much like a resting man with his arms over his chest. I think this picture was maybe at the present location of Marine Park across from downtown Port Arthur. Back in those days, it was a natural beach, a good place for picnics and beach play.
I remember us spending one summer day there. The weather was fairly warm but the sky was rather gray and dreary. At some point, someone was talking about the legend of the sleeping giant, how the giant was a chief who had turned to stone. My brothers and I had an argument about whether the chief was dead or was just asleep.
As I looked at the stony resting chief, this triggered a most unusual sense of knowledge about death and sleep, like a lesson I had been told, long ago. I remember telling my two older brothers that "When you die, its like going to sleep. When you wake up, you are a baby."
My brothers argued that this was not true. One saying "When you die, that's it."I argued "What about the soul?"My brother answered "Your soul goes to heaven. You don't come back."Somehow, I didn't see it that way back then. I'm not sure why it was.
As we played in the sand, I kept looking over to the sleeping giant, and I remember a sense of foreboding and mystery troubled me the whole day. At one point, I was looking at the Sleeping Giant and a thought came to me about some mystery that happened long ago in the sky behind the Sleeping Giant, out over the lake. I may have even thought that it had something to do with an airplane.…
I have confirmed with my father that they used to take us to this beach on the shore of Lake Superior where we could see the Sleeping Giant. We also used to go to Boulevard Lake, which is located in Port Arthur, close to where my father’s twin brother lived. From this park, you can also see the Sleeping Giant, but I know that this memory was not from this location, as we were that day on a beach on the shore of Lake Superior.
The beach is still there, but they have added a new marina and totally changed the shoreline by placing stones on the sort of muddy shoreline. They have also planted grass there.
I believe the event I remember occurred in the early part of the summer of 1957.
This was something that happened when I was about two years old.
My two older brothers and I were sitting in front of our Philco TV. My two brothers were seated on the overstuffed green chesterfield. I sat on the polished wood floor in my blue flannel pajamas with the attached feet.
Suddenly the "Dragnet" badge flashed on and the familiar opening theme for the hit detective show blared on: "DUUUMM DE DUMP DUMP." "DUUUMM DE DUMP DUMP, DUUUUH.""The following program is based on real events. The names have been changed to protect the innocent."I sat in eager anticipation of the exciting cop drama that I knew was coming next.
The theme continued blaring as the opening scenes of the show flashed by in building suspense. "BUM BE BUUMM! BUM BE BIMP BE BUUMM!! The horns and orchestral backup blasted on.
I thought "Maybe tonight I can see the show. Maybe tonight!". My parents were away and my oldest brother was in charge. He spotted me and shouted out. "Gordie! Get to bed! Its past your bed time!""I want to watch the show!""No! You're too young for this! Go to bed!""I'm not too young! I used to watch it all the time!" I pleaded. I'm not sure where that statement came from. My parents had always made me go to bed when Dragnet came on. But something was not right. I could remember that I used to sit and watch the whole show. It was one of my favorites.My brother poked and dragged and pushed me out of the room towards the stairs leading upstairs to our bedroom. "You're lying. No one let you watch this show. You're too young for it! Mom and dad said so!" he shouted at me."But I remember. I used to watch it" I pleaded. "I used to watch it all the time.""You're lying. You're lying."I continued to protest but my brother continued to insist that I go to bed, and so I finally turned and dejectedly shuffled up the stairs to bed where I lay down sobbing that I could not watch my favorite show.
As I lay there, I thought about watching the show and remembered that I was not a boy when I watched it. I had been a man. How could this be? When did this happen? How unfair life seemed to me at that moment, when I realized that now I was a boy again and it would be many years before I would be able to watch my favorite shows again.
How sad and alone I felt as I thought about my older brothers watching my favorite show downstairs. It was just not fair. My brother David was only two years older than me. Why should he get to watch Dragnet?
TOMORROW MORE MEMORIES SURFACE