1977, January 26: Slabs and Blocks

The television show they were watching was ending, and it was late -- around 1:00AM -- when 19-year-old Lee Parish fed the dog and left for home from his girlfriend's house. It was January 26, 1977, and the trip home was just a seven-minute drive through the flat farmlands near Prospect, Kentucky, USA.

        Traveling down the highway he was suddenly aware of a strange object, a ten foot by forty foot rectangle that glowed orange/red like a sunset, hovering above the treeline somewhere between 100 and 220 feet away from the road. The object was so bright that it hurt to look at it; yet, at the same time, Parish felt compelled to keep watching it. The radio in the car fell silent. He became frightened, but was somehow unable to leave -- he had no memory of driving the car at this point, and no sense of controlling it. He watched the object until it was directly overhead... and then it suddenly shot away, first at the speed of a jet, then even faster, to the northwest, until he couldn't see it anymore. It had never made a sound.

        When Parish got home, his mother met him at the door and immediately asked him what was wrong with his eyes. He looked in a mirror; the whites of his eyes were completely bloodshot. He also discovered it was 1:45AM... which meant he spent about 45 minutes making the 7 minute trip from his girlfriend's house! Parish had trouble sleeping that night for the simple reason that his eyes hurt whenever he shut them.

        The next day his mother contacted Lawrence Allison, a local hypnotist that was known to have worked with people trying to remember details of UFO sightings; she did this both because she was worried about her son, and because Parish was worried about the length of time lost in the trip. Allison, with permission, also asked that two local UFO investigators be included for the purpose of documenting the events, Don Elkins and Carla Rueckert. Lee Parrish and his girlfriend, as well as Elkins and Rueckert, came over to Allison's home that evening.

        After getting Parish to a hypnotic state and talking him back to the start of the incident, Allison instructed the young man to simply explain what was happening to him as he relived the events of the night before (and told him he would remember these events when the session was over). So, for around a half hour, Lee Parish explained the events of the previous night as Elkins and Rueckert took notes, everyone just listening for the moment.

The Night Before

        As already known, after he left his girlfriend's house that night Parish saw a strange orange/red object that hurt his eyes and he couldn't look away from. Parish felt the object was not moving, yet somehow, it still came to be hovering over him. He was scared.

        Then the object's color changed to black, then to white, and suddenly Parish couldn't see anything. He felt something in his eyes. Then he was in a large circular room, with white, luminous walls. The room was about twenty feet in diameter and twenty feet tall, which seemed to Parish to be too large to fit inside of the object he had seen hovering overhead. There were only three objects in this room other than Parish... and Parish just somehow knew these three things were sentient.

Parish and the three beings.Parish and the three beings. [Larger version here]

        On his left was a giant black slab shaped like "an army silhouette target, jug-shaped, with a relatively small head." This slab, which Parish called simply the "black one," stretched almost to the ceiling of the room, and had one appendage projecting from it, a sort of handless arm with one joint. The surface of this being looked to be rough and smooth in patches; the limb was all rough. The black one moved slowly to Parish and started to touch him with its limb on his side and back, which gave him an unpleasant set of sensations: both cold and burning at the same time, and he felt as though he was vibrating. Parish showed distinct signs of distress during the hypnotic session whenever the black one was going to touch him again.

        To Parish's right side was a red block that was a little shorter than he was; this, too, had one limb projecting from it, with no joint. The shape of this being was rectangular, like a tall box. Parish felt as if this "red one" was a bit frightened of him, and it seemed to hesitate to approach him at first. The red one touched Parish on his shoulder once, and then on his head, just above the ear, in the hairline. When it touched him, it felt like he was being poked with a needle; but this quickly passed, and Parish found he wasn't particularly scared of the red one.

        During this odd examination Parish felt cold, and the room they were in seemed to be rocking like "a boat on water," back and forth.

        In front of Parish this whole time was the third being, the "white one," which Parish somehow just knew was the one in charge. It was about Parish's height, six feet, and he was aware it was watching him as the other two were touching him. It's body was like a square block that curved to an arch shape, with an actual separate 'head' of sorts (which was just another block); it also appeared to have two limbs folded flush to its body. The arms were never used or moved. This being glowed.

        The red one, after it touched Parish's head, backed away from him and then seemed to either merge with or vanish behind the white one; Parish felt that it had "done its job," and therefore left. The white one then started to make a noise similar to someone "brushing their teeth or using sandpaper -- a rhythmic scraping sound," and the black one had started to back away from Parish at this point. This is also when Parish noticed that he was no longer feeling cold, but rather warm instead.

        The white one then moved towards the black one and, like the red one earlier, either merged with it or vanished behind it. Then the black one simply vanished from the room. Parish, now alone, noticed that he felt heavier than before.

        Then he was in his car again, looking at the small pond out near the highway he'd been traveling on initially. There was no sense of movement or transfer; he was simply not in the room anymore. He watched the object as it flew away, then drove home.

Questions

        Once Parish had been awoken from the hypnotic state, Elkins and Rueckert had some questions for him; he had been instructed that he would remember everything, so he no longer needed to be hypnotized.

        The investigators tried to get a better understanding of how he was taken aboard the ship, and what had happened to his car in the meantime. After some thought, Parish explained that it felt like the car had been suddenly caught up once the object was in the right position above, and that it was suspended somewhere between the ground and the object. There was no good way to explain how he had gone from the vehicle to the room; the door had not opened, there was no sense of traveling... as Parish described it, he was "transformed" into and out of the ship, no doors necessary. He remembered the car still being in mid-air for a moment when he was returned to it. The radio, which had failed shortly into the sighting, started back up as soon as the object had flown out of sight. He had been smoking a cigarette while driving, and it was just plain missing when he was returned.

        On thinking back about it, parish also felt that the object had just appeared out of nowhere suddenly. The terrain was flat, with no hills or mountains it could have hidden behind... and he had only noticed it when it was already quite close and just over the trees in the area. I would also suggest that the object might have approached initially without any lighting, and only been noticed when it became a bright orange/red.

        Parish also explained that he'd been interested in UFOs in a general way, and had read a book about them in high school. He had also been interested in psychic phenomena, and had experienced some odd phenomena he felt were related. The only example he gave was that he had willed an outdoor light to turn on and it had, even though it was unplugged at the time... and his girlfriend stated she had witnessed this event. Parish's mother had also seen several UFOs previously.

        Previous to this odd encounter, Parish had seen UFOs several times. He now had a feeling the strange beings had been coming for him, but had not taken him because he had never been alone on those occasions. He also suspected they would come to find him again someday. Asked why they were examining him, Parish felt they were doing a physical check-up and chemical analysis, and that they were curious about "the way that he was Lee."

        Rueckert also reported that on the day after the encounter, the electrical system in Parish's car went bad, and was expected to need quite a bit of repair work. Another UFO investigator that Rueckert knew -- Dr. Burt Monroe -- who lived in Anchorage, Kentucky, just four miles or so from where Parish had his encounter, stated that at around 10:30PM of the 26th he had a neighbor who had run to her window when she heard her children screaming in time to see a large, white disc-shaped object with a dome.

        Rueckert noted that while Parish never used the word "telepathy" to describe how he knew things about the strange beings, it seemed very clear they were somehow communicating with him directly... and this was probably related to how they had been able to control his movements as well as his car.

        Rueckert reported the whole matter in the Flying Saucer Review for October 1977. FSR was a specialized journal for UFO investigators to share cases and observations; Rueckert ended her summary of the account of Parish's encounter by saying "it is our feeling that, due to the obvious sincerity of Lee and the unusual nature of his experience, this sighting is worth a good deal of study." Unfortunately, i know of no attempted follow-up to see if Parish had further experiences.