The Interrupted Journey
reviewed by Cara DiCostanzo
“I’d bet almost anything that life from another planet, if formed independently from life on Earth, would be more different from all species of Earth life than any two species of Earth life are from each other.”
–Death By Black Hole, Neil deGrasse Tyson
In September 1961, Betty and Barney Hill, an interracial couple living in Portsmouth, NH, are on their way home from Montreal when they see a strange aircraft with double windows following them on a dark mountain road. By the time they return home, they have lost two hours with no memory of what happened. Betty is positive that something happened, but Barney sticks to reality, downplaying the nightmares she has been having since they returned home. She believes that what they saw on that mountain road is a UFO. Barney insists she is being dramatic and shouldn’t rely on her dreams for reality.
Betty contacts Pease Air Force Base, in Newington, New Hampshire, and Walter Webb, at NOUFORS Northern Ontario UFO Research, an astronomer and member of NICAP (National Investigations Committee on Aerial Phenomena). While visiting Webb, he suggested they see a psychologist. Dr. Simon put them both under hypnosis but separately and recorded their therapy sessions. Both Barney and Betty’s stories under hypnosis are exactly the same. They both recalled being stopped by several small men in the road and taken aboard a UFO and examined separately. Dr. Simon remains skeptical throughout the book about whether the event really happened, or their description was based on the nightmares Betty was having. He didn’t think they were lying, but he just felt he didn’t have enough evidence to be convinced the event had happened.
The Interrupted Journey fascinated me. I will admit that I had not heard of Barney and Betty Hill until the book was sent to me. There are parts of the book that are rather dry and sometimes repetitive, but overall, it is a fascinating recap of an event in history that cannot be made up. I can only imagine how this story rocked America in the early ‘60s. The Hills had nothing to gain by telling their story. They are described in the book as a very private interracial couple who went almost a year before deciding to go forward with this story because they were worried about the attention it would bring to them. After reading the book, I was able to delve into some links that the publisher sent me, and it is almost eerie to listen to the tapes of the Hill’s hypnosis. The horror in Barney’s voice is terrifying while his brain is telling him this is not possible. It is the extreme reaction that seals the deal for me. This is a must read for all the skeptics out there. You might just end up a believer.