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Jon-Erik Beckjord (April 26, 1939 – June 22, 2008) was a San Francisco-based paranormal investigator and photographer known for his far-reaching ideas regarding such phenomena as UFOs, crop circles, the Loch Ness Monster, and, his "specialty," Bigfoot, which he believed to be an extradimensional ghost-like entity that lives in mountains, forests, and even farmers' fields. Because of his speculation that creatures such as the Loch Ness Monster and Bigfoot may be interdimensional aliens, he was considered a fringe theorist, not only by skeptics, but also by the vast majority of his fellow cryptozoologists.

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Career

Beckjord attended the USAF Academy in Colorado Springs, CO for two years. He then moved on to Tulane University, where he graduated with honors in sociology in 1961. He studied law for one year at Boalt Hall at UC Berkeley, and later received an MBA from UC Berkeley in 1966. He has appeared on several nationwide radio and television shows, such as Coast to Coast AM and Good Morning America, as well as Late Night with David Letterman.[1] He claims that he captured the Loch Ness Monster on film in 1983; this film aired on the BBC and on NBC in 1987. [2] Beckjord briefly owned three UFO/Bigfoot/Nessie museums in Los Angeles, Malibu, and San Francisco.

Assertions and theories

Beckjord himself characterized his theories as being "no more bizarre than those of Einstein, Dr. Michio Kaku or Dr. Fred Alan Wolf," and considers many to be continuations or expansions upon Einstein's work.

The Cheshire Cat from Carroll's Alice in Wonderland is a figure Beckjord has used for illustrating his ideas regarding Bigfoot.

Beckjord believed that Bigfoot and similar cryptids may be "inter-dimensional" beings that can occasionally take physical form for brief periods of time, but that, like the famed Cheshire cat, can "fade out" and pass through "wormholes", possibly to other dimensions or parallel universes. [3] He reported to have had one of the creatures speak to him using telepathy, communicating the words "We're here, but we're not real, like what you think is real". [4] Beckjord claimed that such entities may be able to actually disappear into thin air, or even shapeshift. "He disappeared right in front of me", he replied to one poster on his message board. He noted that other persons have had this also happen to them (see The Locals by Thom Powell, 2004).

Beckjord maintained that the interdimensional hypothesis may possibly, if proven, explain why there are thousands of alleged Bigfoot creature sightings each year, yet no dead zoological physical body is ever found. To evidence these ideas, Beckjord accumulated a large collection of enlarged photographs that he says show, among other things, "half-Bigfoots" and "invisible Bigfoots", or possible aliens. The forms are often found in situations where the camera picked up images not seen by the witnesses, often due to distance. According to Beckjord, the images show primates, carnivores and beings not readily identified within known zoological classifications that resemble descriptions of aliens submitted to investigators. He conducted much field work, such as camping out at "window sites" where, he said, Bigfoot activity is frequently seen. [5] From 1978–1981, he collected his own photographic evidence of what he believes to be a "tribe" of either Bigfoots or aliens at El Dorado National Forest.

Conflict

Beckjord's strong beliefs about Bigfoot and similar entities brought him into conflict not only with skeptics, who consider Bigfoot sightings to be a cultural phenomena purely resulting from wishful thinking or hoaxes, but also with those who believe Bigfoot to be an actual physical creature. CNN correspondent Rusty Dornin wrote in 1997 "if it's far-fetched and unproved, Beckjord buys it."[6]

He actively promoted his claims on Internet message boards, arousing long, lively discussions that often turned into flame wars between Beckjord and his opponents. Indeed, many webmasters banned Beckjord from their sites, considering him to be too disruptive.[7][8] He had, at times, asked his readers to "trash" or "attack" forums where he felt he was being treated unfairly. However, despite the extreme nature of his claims, his powerful and aggressive personality drew much attention from the paranormal research community.

Death

Beckjord died at the age of 69 from prostate cancer on June 22, 2008, near his home in Lafayette, California.[9]

Footnotes

  1. ^ On 19 August 1986, according to www.tv.com
  2. ^ The Loch Ness Monster Internet Museum at www.beckjord.com.
  3. ^ Web Site Unavailable
  4. ^ www.coasttocoastam.com
  5. ^ Robert Sheaffer, "Looking for Mr. Goodape", Skeptical Inquirer, Nov. 1999.
  6. ^ Dornin, Rusty (1997) Don't believe in aliens? Visit San Francisco's UFO 'Museum'. Retrieved 8 January 2006.
  7. ^ Bigfootforums.com And Eric Beckjord - Bigfoot Forums
  8. ^ Cryptozoology.com
  9. ^ Sam Whiting. Paranormal believer Erik Beckjord dies at 69. San Francisco Chronicle. July 25, 2008. Retrieved on July 25, 2008.
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