Examining the Controversy of Amelia Earhart's Disappearance and the Claim of her 'Private' Survival

Home
Has Media White-Washing Obscured The Truth About Amelia Earhart's Disappearance?
The Discovered Forensic Realities of Irene Madeline O'Crowley Craigmile (Heller) (Bolam)
Items swept under the Rug of History, and a Question-Answer Look at Earhart's 1937 Disappearance
The History of Amelia Earhart Mystery 'Investigative Research'
Controversial Amelia Earhart Forensic Argument Information
About Irene Madeline O'Crowley Craigmile (Heller) (Bolam); Did You Know?
Forensic Comparison Samples: The Amelia To Irene Congruence
A Closer Comparison Of Eyes & Faces; Amelia To Irene, Separating The Irenes
Will The Real Irene Craigmile Bolam Please Stand Up?
Amelia Earhart Miscellaneous: Monsignor Kelley Excerpt, NASA Astronaut Wally Schirra's Words.
An Amelia To Irene Forensic Reality, 1982 Published Forgeries Discovered
The 1982 New Jersey Tribune's Irene-Amelia Photo Page 10/29/82
Alex Mandel's and Gwen Gale's Wikipedia Anti Irene-Amelia Crusade
Amelia Earhart Press Notice Samples
A Few Odd Rumors About Amelia Earhart
Recap of the Forensic Comparison & Analysis Discoveries
About Beyond 37's Tod Swindell

April 2014 

 Welcome All Visitors to Irene-Amelia.com
 
"You're onto something that will stagger your imagination." U.S. Navy Commander, John Pillsbury refers to the withheld truth about Amelia Earhart's 1937 disappearance in 1962 to CBS Radio Journalist, Fred Goerner. From The Search for Amelia Earhart by Fred Goerner, Doubleday Books, 1966.
 
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This Home Page presents an overview of the Amelia Earhart disappearance controversy. It reviews the work of investigative authors Randall Brink, Fred Goerner, Vincent Loomis, Joe Gervais, Donald Moyer Wilson, Rollin Reineck and other noteworthy researchers. The page links displayed on the left offer an in-depth look at the realities and obfuscations of Amelia Earhart's 1937 disappearance, and presents the first-ever 'objective' Forensic Analysis of the highly curious Irene Madeline O'Crowley Craigmile (Heller) (Bolam).  

Below: The most recognized published books that evaluated and expounded on Amelia's post-loss survival.

CBS Radio Journalist, Fred Goerner's 1966 book...
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A New York Times Best Seller, it ascertained Earhart ended up existing under Japan's auspice.
The 1970 Joe Klaas book w/Joe Gervais
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A New York Times best seller, asserted Amelia privately survived with Japan & U.S. awareness.
By Robert Myers & Barbara Wiley, 1985
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A first-person account; avowed Joe Gervais was right about the 'Irene' he met in 1965.
Randall Brink's 1994 'Best Seller'...
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Brink collaborated with Gervais & was invited to Irene's 1982 Memorial Dinner.
By Colonel Rollin Reineck, 2004
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Displayed portions of Beyond 37's study results, avowed the Gervais-Irene was 'formerly Earhart.'
By David Bowman, 2005
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Beyond 37's overlay on the cover, Bowman was amazed the Gervais claim was still being asserted.

[Note: Beyond 37' is a moniker for the individuals who contributed to the Forensic Analysis.]
 
 

Product Details
The Chosen Instrument by Selig Altschull and
Marilyn Bender; Simon & Schuster, 1982
(See quote below.)

"Numerous investigations foundered on official silence in Tokyo and Washington, leaving the fate of Amelia Earhart an everlasting mystery." From Marylin Bender & Selig Altschull's Pan Am aviation history book, The Chosen Instrument, 1982, Simon & Schuster. Note: 'Official silence' created the 'mystery' of Amelia Earhart.

Irene-Amelia.com is not connected to any Amelia Earhart research groups or plane-searching cottage industries. It is true how in recent decades the mystery-solving pursuits of private clubs such as TIGHAR, Nauticos, and the Amelia Earhart Society have drawn the most media attention. However, while sporting different theories about what happened to Earhart and Noonan, [TIGHAR's 'they died as castaways on a desert island,' the Amelia Earhart Society's 'they died while in Japan's custody,' and Nauticos' 'they died after crashing and sinking in the Pacific'] they also conjointly managed to water-down the full controversy of Amelia Earhart's 'world flight' story, and dismissed the possibility of her continued 'private' survival without performing due diligence.

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Amelia Earhart's Lockheed Electra 10E in Paramaribo during her world flight.

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Emile Gauvreau's 1944 classic WWII aviation book, 'The Wild Blue Yonder'

A year after Earhart's disappearance: "This is a powder keg. Any public discussion of it will furnish the torch for the explosion." U.S. Secretary of the Navy, Claude Swanson in 1938, refers to the 'official silence regard' concerning the truth about Amelia Earhart's 1937 disappearance. From Emile Gauvreau's The Wild Blue Yonder, EP Dutton Co., 1944.

Introduced as an academic alternative, from the time it was first launched in 2007 Irene-Amelia.com has ranked high among internet search engines as a more objective 'Earhart disappearance' website. It asks and answers these simple questions: Did Earhart and Noonan myopically decide to fly hundreds of miles in a direction where they knew no civilization existed, only to die as castaways? In Japan's care, would Japan have let them die or have executed them, over simply rescuing and helping them? With plenty of fuel remaining, would the duo have continued to ineptly fly around over the Pacific Ocean for hours until they ran out of fuel, without even attempting their pre-described 'Plan B' option to reach the nearest civilized land mass within their reach? Is it plausible the general public was left unaware of something else that happened? Consider the following:
 
FDR Cabinet member and 'right hand man' Henry P. Morgenthau Jr.
 
"This letter that Mrs. Roosevelt wrote me on trying to get the report on Amelia Earhart, if we're going to release this thing it's just going to smear the whole reputation of Amelia Earhart, I mean if we give it to this one man we've got to make it public. We can't let one man see it." Excerpted from Henry P. Morgenthau Jr.'s May of 1938 Dictaphone recorded response to First Lady, Eleanor Roosevelt's personal secretary, Malvina Scheider. Via the Coast Guard Cutter Itasca and additional relays of the events as they unfolded on July 2, 1937, Morgenthau was the most closely apprised individual on the true circumstances of Amelia Earhart's disappearance. Further down, notice Morgenthau's referral to a 'decision' Amelia made adjacent to her filght outcome that "absolutely disregarded all orders." To this day the public remains unaware of the 'against orders' decision Amelia made. 
 
 
By way of combing through the past fifty-years of independent investigative research findings, Irene-Amelia.com offers the most comprehensive information source on the subject of Amelia Earhart's last flight and its outcome found on the internet. It is highly recommended to Earhart mystery researchers, aviation buffs, college history professors, and anyone else who wishes to examine the unbridled truths about Amelia Earhart and her self-described, 'last flight.'
 

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HOW THE 'DISAPPEARANCE' OF AMELIA EARHART AND FRED NOONAN BEGAN:
 
ACCORDING TO HISTORY, ON THE MORNING OF JULY 2, 1937 Amelia Earhart sent her last 'officially recognized' radio transmission at 8:44AM as she and Fred Noonan continued to fly safely over the Pacific Ocean. The Coast Guard's cutter-ship, 'Itasca' produced the only 'offical' radio log for public review, that described the duo's approach to Howland Island. Curiously, although the Itasca received Amelia's transmissions, Amelia was unable to hear the Itasca's replies. The Itasca's last received message had Earhart mentioning her northwest-to-southeast line of position, "157-337" followed by her saying "We are running north and south." Her plane's fuel supply remained ample at that time. Earhart's Lockheed Electra had a distance range of 4,500 miles; the leg they had flown from New Guinea to Howland was 2,550 miles. The duo's last coordinates were generally believed to have been, 'Somewhere In The Vicinity Northwest Of Howland Island, Well Below The Gilbert Islands And The Marshall Islands.' Although they did not locate Howland--a tiny island amid a vast ocean expanse--they never reported any trouble flying and could easily have made it to another civilized land-mass with their 'Plan B' option. Of note, before she began her world flight, Amelia had mentioned to Bureau of Air Commerce Chief, Gene Vidal that if she and Noonan had trouble locating Howland their 'Plan B' was to reserve enough fuel to head back to the British controlled Gilbert Islands, that were adjacent to the Marshall Islands. (continued further down)

Marshall Islands Ambassador, Alfred Capelle
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Avowed Amelia Earhart "definitely" ended up in the Marshall Islands.
WWII Admiral Chester Nimitz
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Said it was "known and documented in Washington" that Earhart ended up in the Marshall Islands.
Monsignor James Francis Kelley of Seton Hall
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Admitted his awareness of his friend, Amelia's private continued survival after her disappearance.

Below: The Gervais-Irene & Amelia superimposed
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To go to the 'Forensic Realities' page click on this photo.

"Amelia Earhart definitely came to the Marshall Islands in 1937."
The above was described in 2002 to Associated Press reporter Ron Staton by Alfred Capelle, United Nations Ambassador to the Marshall Islands. Prior to the time US Troops occupied it in 1944, Japan had been the ruling government authority in the Marshalls. Based on his country's own history of the time period, Ambassador Capelle believed Amelia Earhart's existence there remained non-public information do to its controversial nature during the tense pre-World War Two years.

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A 'FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT' DECLASSIFIED 0-2 INTELLIGENCE REPORT revealed how after Amelia Earhart's last publicly relayed radio transmission was logged, she sent additional radio transmissions that were officially recorded. The report included that upon Earhart and Noonan abandoning their effort to locate Howland, "She (Amelia) stated she was turning north and they (Earhart and Noonan) continued to be heard at intervals." The 0-2 report also mentioned, "Her signals became fainter as she continued to head north until they were no longer received." The report was issued in response to a rumor of Japanese military planes having shot Earhart's plane down after it entered its air space. Australian Air Laison, Colonel H.H.C. Richards conveyed in the 1938 generated 0-2 report that it was "definitely not the case." Or, Japan fighter planes did not shoot Amelia Earhart's plane down. It was also true; for three days Pan Am's Makapu Point station in Hawaii recorded follow up radio transmissions described as 'likely sent from Earhart.' A degree of error bearing correction from the Coast Guard Cutter Itasca to Makapu showed the signals emanating from the direction of the lower Marshall Islands. To date however, no Earhart radio messages besides those exhibited in the Itasca's log that stopped while Earhart and Noonan were in the vicinity of Howland on the morning of July 2, 1937 were ever authorized for public review. Even the Itasca's radio log was withheld from the public for more than a year by Henry P. Morgenthau, Jr., a key member of FDR's Cabinet. A few months before he finally did make it public, Morgenthau sent a message to First Lady, Eleanor Roosevelt displaying his reluctance to release the White House 'final report' on Earhart's flight ending, especially where it concerned a certain choice Earhart made that was "against all orders." He also edified for the First Lady how releasing it would 'ruin' Amelia Earhart's reputation. (continued further down)
 

Below: After she was reported missing Amelia Earhart's image strangely began to require White House protection. This reply to a query made by First Lady, Eleanor Roosevelt nine months after Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan were declared 'missing persons' reveals the protective stance the White House was actively adhering to:

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In May of 1938 Eleanor Roosevelt's personal secretary, Malvina Scheider delivered the above message to the First Lady in response to a query she made on behalf of Jackie Cochran and Paul Mantz. The two wished to know why the White House refused to release the final recorded details of Amelia Earhart's July of 1937 disappearance. FDR's Cabinet member, Henry P. Morgenthau Jr. is referenced in the above note. (See his photo and other transcript inserts below.) Although it is clear the White House withheld information about Amelia Earhart's flight outcome, it never officially commented on why it refused to make it public. Among the information Morgenthau eventually did release, it was evident adjustments had been made to make it non-controversial. For example, its altered version of Earhart's final words included the phrase, "we are running north and south." So much left the public unaware of the final northern-heading Earhart and Noonan ultimately chose. It wasn't until 1983 that the discovered follow-up 'officially recorded' 0-2 Intelligence memo revealed Earhart had specified the duo's final heading as "north," matching her previous statement of 'heading for the Gilberts' if they didn't locate Howland.  

From FDR's Cabinet, Henry P. Morgenthau Jr.
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His duties well exceeded his job description.

 
"I know how Amelia Earhart absolutely disregarded all orders, and if we ever release this thing, goodbye Amelia Earhart's reputation." 1938 quote from FDR Presidential Cabinet Member, Henry P. Morgenthau, Jr. in response to First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt's query on why the White House refused to release the details it knew about Earhart's world flight ending. (See transcript excerpts below.)
 
Ignored since the 1960s, when it was ultimately determined that Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan went down in the lower Marshall Islands that were part of Japan's Imperial Mandates,  it was realized that years earlier Morgenthau and others, to include FDR were aware that after Japan's Naval Authority came to the flying duo's aid, Amelia cooperated and consorted with them 'against orders.'
 

Below: Two excerpts from Morgenthau's original May 13, 1938 transcripted response to First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt's request for information concerning the 'disappearance' of Amelia Earhart. 

From Morgenthau's conversation...
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...with the First Lady's secretary Malvina Scheider about the withheld Earhart disappearance report.
An additional transcript exerpt:
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The lack of a "proper search" referenced the U. S. never searching the Marshalls.

Note: Henry Morgenthau Jr. actually ended his conversation with Malvina Scheider by suggesting she 'make something up' to appease the First Lady's request. He did offer to personally tell the First Lady 'what happened' if she really wanted to know, but it was clear he didn't want to. For Morgenthau professed to know the truth about Earhart's world flight outcome, with his assistant, Stephen Gibbon adding their 'evidence' confirmed additional searching would be pointless. Morgenthau's comments were recorded while he was conducting a meeting on social security reform, meaning other people were in the room with he and Gibbon at the time so he was careful as he spoke to Ms. Scheider on the phone. He didn't say it specifically, but he alluded to the idea of Earhart and Noonan having been intercepted, or perhaps even fired upon by Japan as they approached the Marshalls by way of 'wireless messages' pertaining to 'the last few minutes' the duo was airborn. Realistically as well, it would have been an important objective for Morgenthau to steer the curious away from learning about Earhart's willingness to consort with Japan's Naval Authority after her rescue. The matter of the Sino-Japanese War starting on July 7, 1937 (just five days after Earhart and Noonan went missing) that led to the U.S. imposing embargos on Japan, and soon after its quiet endorsement of the Flying Tigers to help China in its fight against Japan, would have translated to the famous Amelia Earhart as someone newly aligned with a budding U.S. enemy. Needless to say, there was no immediate attention placed on doubting Amelia's patriotism. As far as the 'they were spying' theory remained a concern; Randall Brink, Fred Goerner, Joe Gervais, Rollin Reineck, Amy Otis Earhart (Amelia's mother) and others believed there was an alternate 'secret agenda' for Amelia's last flight that was arranged during the preparation stage. Whether those plans amounted to fly-over surveys Earhart and Noonan were to conduct for U.S. Naval Intelligence remains unclear. Randall Brink and Fred Goerner considered, according to their investigative research findings in Washington DC, just before they went missing the duo might have been conducting fly-over surveys to detect illegal fortification efforts of Japan's among in its Mandate Islands. Contrarily, based on the same research, Gervais and Reineck considered the duo might have been set to begin their surveys with a different plane after making it to Hawaii, their last scheduled stop before returning stateside. [See 'The Niihau Plan' on the Forensic Realities page below the Putnam, Cochran articles for more.]

U. N. Marshall Islands Ambassador, Alfred Capelle
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In 2002 he affirmed to Ron Staton of the Associated Press: Earhart definitely came to the Marshall's
2002 Associated Press Article by Ron Staton
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Staton interviewed Capelle at an Earhart Research Symposium
From the Marshall Islands stamp series
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The actual path of Earhart's Electra shows the reroute to the Marshalls

The Marshall Islands Stamp Series
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From Earhart and Noonan's takeoff from New Guinea to their rescue at Mili Atoll

Note: The U.S. Press circuit steered clear in 1987, the year the Republic of the Marshall Islands commemorated the 50th Anniversary of the Japan Naval Authority's rescue of Earhart and Noonan at Mili Atoll and its recovery of Earhart's plane, doing so by way of an impressive series of postage stamps. Above are the four stamps together, below are enlargements of each:

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Earhart and Noonan take off from New Guinea

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Marshallese natives witness the end results at Mili

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Coast Guard Cutter Itasca stationed by Howland Island

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Japan Navy's rescue & recovery of Earhart's Plane

Randall Brink's investigative book, 'Lost Star'
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Concluded Earhart's world flight ended at Mili Atoll of the Marshall Islands

After hearing of Gervais and Dinger's work...
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...CBS radio journalist, Fred Goerner's 1966 classic blew the lid off the Earhart truth.

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TODAY, MARSHALL ISLANDS GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS continue to describe, just as they always have, how Amelia Earhart's arrival at the Marshall Islands in 1937 when it was under Japan's pre-WWII authority, is legitimate history. They also feel American pride and a quiet post-war agreement between Japan and the U. S. (as opposed to a vast conspiracy) aimed at the protection of Earhart's legacy and essential 'post-war goodwill' to commence between to the two countries, were the main reasons for disallowing such a truth to be 'retroactively' endorsed. It is also at least arguable, that after Amelia Earhart ended her world-flight in Japan's pre-war Imperial Mandate Islands and spent time on Japan's governed Island of Saipan as well, she may not have been there against her will. Beyond Japan's denial of ever mistreating Earhart, and Ambassador Capelle's 'specific reason' statement for why Amelia Earhart was in the Marshalls, there never was a solid conveyance of Amelia Earhart's or Fred Noonan's deaths taking place overseas, or anywhere else, ...ever.
 
No matter, for after USAF Captains, Joe Gervais and Bob Dinger's 1960s Earhart investigative research caught the attention of CBS Radio Journalist, Fred Goerner, who found out their 'seventy eyewitness accounts' attesting to Earhart's survival and travels among Japan's Imperial Mandate Islands during the war had been confiscated in 1962 by high-ranking U. S. military officials stationed in Japan, Goerner's groundbreaking 1966 book, The Search For Amelia Earhart blew the lid off the long buried reality of Earhart's last flight outcome. It also caused an important question to arise: Where Earhart and Noonan did make it to civilized land and received aid from Japan, what became of them after that? It was clear by the end of the 1960s decade, as if to put a final lid on the story, the American public had been persuaded by more sensationalized theories to believe that Earhart had either died of an illness Japan neglected, or in a more macabre way, from Japan having executed both she and Noonan.
 
Beyond the simple 'crashed and sank' idea, with all other suggestions of Earhart's fate rebuffed by 'official silence' in Tokyo and Washington, the Earhart disappearance case evolved to become an open playing field. So much so, by the 1980s, out of the blue and with no real historical foundation to support it, the U. S. Navy began to favor a more 'innocent' alternate ending for Earhart and Noonan with the introduction of a nonsensical idea suggesting they flew so far off course in the opposite direction of civilization, that they ended up hundreds of miles south on the desert island of Gardner, now known as Nikamororo. A more romantic version of their demise to be sure, it offered that the two lived alone like Robinson Crusoe there until they died of hunger and dehydration. Even though the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum has always maintained that no authentic evidence ever supported the claim, this 'castaways' scenario still remains an occasional reported-on news item that all-but sweeps the many volumes of previously discovered authentic investigation data under the rug of recognized U. S. history. In the meantime, since the 1970s any mention that Earhart and Noonan might have privately continued to live out of the public eye by their own volition for a reason, or 'reasons' unknown by the public, has perpetually remained ignored by official U. S. history. Recall however, there never was an official investigation that looked into the 1937 disappearance of Earhart and Noonan. Note As Well: In 1960 Amelia Earhart would have only been sixty-three years old. So where she did survive her storied disappearance in Japan's care, it is likely she was still alive in 1960, and therefor too perhaps, for years to follow.
 

Martini, Harris, Saipan rep. and Cooper
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Note 2013 article excerpts and comments below:

Re-caps of a few 2013 articles published in Variety and elsewhere:

2013 Earhart search news excerpted from articles by Variety's Alexie Villegas Zotomayer, reporter Haidee V. Eugenio & others... 

  Witnesses claimed Earhart went to Saipan after initially going down in the Marshall Islands   

eyewitness accounts are pouring in on WWII sightings of American aviatrix Amelia Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan on Saipan, permits, however, have yet to be issued to allow the researchers to dig at Naftan Point and at two former As Lito airfield sites.

Aircraft Recovery Associates, composed of veteran filmmakers, researchers and Earhart enthusiasts have been on Saipan since January; however, they continue to wait for the release of the permits that will allow them to conduct digs and to gather evidence to support their hypothesis about Earhart’s disappearance in 1937.

Amelia Earhart

Amelia Earhart

Lead investigator Michael Harris, and recovery specialists Richard Martini and Captain Paul H. Cooper have been on Saipan for several weeks now exploring the hypothesis that Amelia Earhart was taken to Saipan, incarcerated and died here.

- See more at: http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/53805-earhart-research-awaits-release-of-permits?tmpl=component&layout=default&page=#sthash.RKRn6oZH.dpuf

eyewitness accounts are pouring in on WWII sightings of American aviatrix Amelia Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan on Saipan, permits, however, have yet to be issued to allow the researchers to dig at Naftan Point and at two former As Lito airfield sites.

Aircraft Recovery Associates, composed of veteran filmmakers, researchers and Earhart enthusiasts have been on Saipan since January; however, they continue to wait for the release of the permits that will allow them to conduct digs and to gather evidence to support their hypothesis about Earhart’s disappearance in 1937.

Amelia Earhart

Amelia Earhart

Lead investigator Michael Harris, and recovery specialists Richard Martini and Captain Paul H. Cooper have been on Saipan for several weeks now exploring the hypothesis that Amelia Earhart was taken to Saipan, incarcerated and died here.

- See more at: http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/53805-earhart-research-awaits-release-of-permits?tmpl=component&layout=default&page=#sthash.RKRn6oZH.dpuf

eyewitness accounts are pouring in on WWII sightings of American aviatrix Amelia Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan on Saipan, permits, however, have yet to be issued to allow the researchers to dig at Naftan Point and at two former As Lito airfield sites.

Aircraft Recovery Associates, composed of veteran filmmakers, researchers and Earhart enthusiasts have been on Saipan since January; however, they continue to wait for the release of the permits that will allow them to conduct digs and to gather evidence to support their hypothesis about Earhart’s disappearance in 1937.

Amelia Earhart

Amelia Earhart

Lead investigator Michael Harris, and recovery specialists Richard Martini and Captain Paul H. Cooper have been on Saipan for several weeks now exploring the hypothesis that Amelia Earhart was taken to Saipan, incarcerated and died here.

- See more at: http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/53805-earhart-research-awaits-release-of-permits?tmpl=component&layout=default&page=#sthash.RKRn6oZH.dpuf

eyewitness accounts are pouring in on WWII sightings of American aviatrix Amelia Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan on Saipan, permits, however, have yet to be issued to allow the researchers to dig at Naftan Point and at two former As Lito airfield sites.

Aircraft Recovery Associates, composed of veteran filmmakers, researchers and Earhart enthusiasts have been on Saipan since January; however, they continue to wait for the release of the permits that will allow them to conduct digs and to gather evidence to support their hypothesis about Earhart’s disappearance in 1937.

- See more at: http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/53805-earhart-research-awaits-release-of-permits?tmpl=component&layout=default&page=#sthash.RKRn6oZH.dpuf
Many documented eyewitness accounts have recently been gathered concerning WWII era sightings of American aviatrix, Amelia Earhart and her navigator, Fred Noonan on Saipan. Now, a group of experts feel they are getting close to laying to rest the 76-year mystery of the disappearance of legendary aviatrix. That is what U.S. based film director, producer, screenwriter, and freelance journalist Richard Martini, famed aircraft recovery lead investigator Michael Harris, and aircraft recovery specialist Capt. Paul H. Cooper are trying to do in their ongoing research on Saipan. The investigators and many others, to include well known 1960s CBS radio journalist, Fred Goerner and a plethora of past and present Saipanese and Marshall Islands government officials, insist Earhart went down at Mili Atoll of the Marshall Islands and soon after travelled to Saipan while the pre-war era American public remained 'unaware' of such a reality.

1966 Doubleday book by CBS Radio's Fred Goerner...
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A top ten New York Times 'Best Seller,' years later 'official silence' left few recalling it.

How Amelia Earhart's 'Disappearance Controversy' Re-Surfaced In The 1960s

These two great investigative books from 1966 and 1970 combined for over fifteen years of documented research. They clearly revealed how in 1937 the United States and Japan chose not to publicly disclose an awareness they shared on what became of Amelia Earhart and her navigator, Fred Noonan. The books' authors along with other private investigators who inquired about the overwhelming amount of indisputable evidence they discovered, were greeted with official silence in Washington and Tokyo when they pressed for more information. Eventually most all gave up on trying to get an official response. Still, by the mid-1970s it had become clear in a forensic way that Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan did not just crash and sink, nor did they disappear from the face of the earth, nor did they die of sickness on Saipan, nor were they executed by Japan for spying, nor did they perish on a remote desert island hundreds of miles south of the equator. A purpose was served though, for the introductions of these and other suggestions about the duo's final fate helped keep the 'mystery' idea going. Today those most keenly aware of the Earhart disappearance saga accept the reality of the duo having survived well beyond the date of their so-called disappearance under the auspice of Japan, while understanding the general public was just never clued in about it.

1970 McGraw-Hill book by Joe Klaas w/Joe Gervais
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First to pontificate that Amelia had 'privately survived.'

Note: Pertaining to the above information and published book accounts, there is virtually no-doubt Amelia Earhart spent time on Saipan and among the Marshall Islands when they were under Japan's mandated jurisdiction, although it is unlikely she was ever held by Japan against her will, or that she died while in Japan's care. This leads to the same question that has been perpetually asked--but never succinctly answered to the public's satisfaction since 1965:

Irene Who?

Artistic photo rendition of the Gervais-Irene
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One of three women attributed to the "Irene Madaline O'Crowley Craigmile Heller Bolam" identity.

Three Irenes and the Missing Person Case of Amelia Earhart
From The Forensic Comparison Study: Three different women used the same 'Irene O'Crowley Craigmile (Bolam)' identity

Below: The 'Gervais-Irene' who died in 1982, was nicknamed for retired Air Force Major, Joe Gervais. Major Gervais spent years studying Earhart's disappearance before he met her in New York in 1965 at a gathering of well known retired pilots. He found her superior knowledge of flying and aviation history fascinating, and her self-described 'close friendship' to Amelia Earhart curious in an odd, if not highly familiar way...

1963 photo taken in Japan...
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...the Gervais-Irene Craigmile Bolam, known as 'Irene' from the mid-1940s until her passing in 1982.
Equally blended...
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...Amelia at age 30 and the Gervais-Irene Craigmile Bolam.
Amelia Earhart, age thirty in 1928.
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Photo taken after her Friendship flight.
     

BEYOND THE OBVIOUS Gervais-Irene & Amelia congruence, the vast amount of information accumulated since the 1960s that exposed the Irene-Amelia controversy speaks for itself, to include how Beyond 37's Forensic Comparison Study coupled with the subsequent 'identification placement' testimony of the original Irene's son, revealed there were actually three different women who were historically attributed to the same 'Irene' identity:

Original Irene O'Crowley Craigmile, middle, 1930.
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Amelia's 1930s friend, she was seen no more after she gave birth to a son in 1934.

The 1940s-1982 ID'd 'Gervais-Irene'
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AKA 'Irene Craigmile Bolam' after her 1958 marriage to Guy Bolam of England.
The third Irene (Irene Jr., Non-Gervais)
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Circa 'early 1940s,' she helped raise the original Irene's 1934 born son.

In the 1960s several investigative researchers combined to unearth important truths pertaining to Amelia Earhart's 1937 world-flight. All of them drew the same conclusion: Without public awareness, Amelia Earhart had continued to live overseas in Japan's care well beyond July 2, the day she was said to have 'disappeared.' A few felt equally as strong that she survived well beyond World War Two in the United States with a different identity. Where so, she could only have been... the Gervais-Irene. Note the following:

The Gervais-Irene,1978
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Proud with her wings on her left shoulder, she was identified nowhere as 'Irene' prior to the 1940s.

The Gervais-Irene in 1978, harder exposure...
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...different angle added; all of her eighty years seen here.

     

Orville Wright & Amelia Earhart
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Below: Gervais-Irene & Amelia superimposed:
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A head to toe match, character traits too, including handwriting.

Amelia Earhart
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Late 1936, while preparing for her world flight

Gervais-Irene's handwriting compared to Amelia's:
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From a 1967 letter she sent to Joe Gervais, with Amelia's own "Amelia M. Earhart" signature added.

Above: A Gervais-Irene to Amelia Earhart handwriting comparison, with the Gervais-Irene veritably admitting she was 'known' as both Irene and Amelia. Excerpted from a 1967 letter she wrote to Joe Gervais, she referred to two individuals; famous pilot Viola Gentry, (see Forensic Realities page) and Early Birds of Aviation President Elmo Pickerill, writing, "because they each knew us both well as Amelia Earhart and Irene Craigmile." Beyond 37' added Amelia's 'Amelia M. Earhart' signature to the document for a comparison.

Below Comparisons: After the forensic conclusion of three different women having been attributed to the same Irene O'Crowley Craigmile Bolam identity was accomplished, the Gervais-Irene's physical head-to-toe and personal 'character traits' match-up with Amelia Earhart naturally delivered an undeniable reality to the equation.

Amelia Earhart, age twenty-six.
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1923 into a mirror self-photo portrait. She would become famous in 1928.

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Amelia Earhart, 1933

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Amelia, 1928

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Classic Amelia, the blend begins.

Orville Wright & Amelia
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Gervais-Irene & Amelia
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Two photos superimposed.
Gervais-Irene & Amelia superimposed
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Gervais-Irene,1965 / Amelia,1933
Gervais-Irene & Amelia superimposed
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Gervais-Irene,1963 / Amelia,1928
Gervais-Irene & Amelia superimposed
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Gervais-Irene,1976 / Amelia,1932
Gervais-Irene & Amelia superimposed
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Gervais-Irene,1978 / Amelia,1929

USN Admiral Chester Arthur Nimitz
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Commander of the Pacific Fleet during World War Two

In 1965, former World War Two Pacific Fleet Commander, Admiral Chester Nimitz admitted his own awareness of Earhart's
continued survival after her described 'disappearance' to CBS Radio Journalist, Fred Goerner who was investigating the case:
 
1965 Nimitz Quote: "Amelia Earhart and her navigator did go down in the
Marshall Islands and were picked up by the Japanese."

After the U. S. occupied the Marshalls in 1944, liberating it from Japan, Admiral Nimitz was put in charge there. Admiral Nimitz also mentioned to Goerner how such a truth about Earhart was long ago "known and documented in Washington." [Note: Admiral Nimitz assisted Fred Goerner with his 1960s investigative journalism quest that peered into the controversial non-reported details of Earhart's last flight.] Admiral Nimitz also knew Monsignor James Francis Kelley. (See photo of Nimitz with Kelley below.) 

Monsignor James Francis Kelley

From a 10/18/82 New Jersey News Tribune article:
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Msgr. Kelley later verified his late friend, the Gervais-Irene Bolam formerly was 'Amelia Earhart'

Photo of Msgr. Kelley from his autobiography.
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Past Seton Hall President, Msgr. James F. Kelley knew both Lindbergh and Earhart.

Admiral Nimitz and Senator Al Hawkes...
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...receiving honorary Seton Hall degrees from Monsignor Kelley;

Below: Excerpt from retired USAF Colonel Rollin C. Reineck's 1991 taped interview with Monsignor James Francis Kelley. [NOTE: Scroll further down for more info on Monsignor Kelley's 'Irene-Amelia' involvement. Also find more recorded interview excerpts in the above-left 'Miscellaneous' link.]

Reineck: Are you aware that she was Irene Bolam?
Kelley: What?
Reineck: Amelia Earhart was Irene Bolam?
Kelley: That's right, yes.

Their close friendship was evident after WWII...
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...Irene (the Gervais-Irene) and Monsignor Kelley at dinner, mid-late 1970s.
Below: Research Document; Helen Barber statement.
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Mrs. Barber, of Pennsylvania, spoke with and wrote to retired Col. Rollin C. Reineck

"Amelia Earhart survived and she eventually returned to the United States. There's no doubt about it anymore." USAF Colonel Rollin C. Reineck (Ret.), who met and spoke with Monsignor Kelley, from an interview with the National Geographic Channel, 2006.

Monsignor Kelley & Gervais-Irene in 1980
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Kelley admitted that in the 1940s she acquired the original Irene's identity.

In the 1960s and 1970s much controversial information about Amelia Earhart's post-disappearance existence was discovered and revealed. In subsequent years more substantiated accounts about the famous pilot's quiet survival kept surfacing, to include the words of former Seton Hall University President, Monsignor James Francis Kelley:

"It's hard for most people to comprehend, by the 1960s she barely recognized herself for who she used to be." Monsignor James Francis Kelley (1902-1996) describing his late 'close friend' Irene Bolam to Rockford, Illinois TV reporter, Dean Magley in 1987. In 1991 Father Kelley also confirmed to retired Air Force Colonel, Rollin Reineck how his late friend, Irene (the 'Gervais-Irene' who died in 1982) was previously known as 'Amelia Earhart.'

After it first broke in 1970, how did official history
choose to chronicle the Irene-Amelia story?

In 1972, two years after the Irene-Amelia story first surfaced in the press, a file bearing the heading 'Earhart, Amelia; Special War Problems' was discovered  among State Department dockets by an archivist who cited there was "more than one file" labeled that way. Arthur Dewayne Gibson of Verdunville, West Virginia mentioned one of the files described Amelia Earhart test flying planes in Japan's Imperial Mandate Islands in 1938. In 1984, State Department archivist, Patricia Morton found another file labeled the same way containing an end of war telegraph correspondence sent from a Chinese civilian internment camp to Earhart's survived husband, George Putnam. To date the State Department has never officially elaborated on the various files or their contents, nor has it explained why such a cache of 'Earhart, Amelia; Special War Problems' labeled files came to exist in the first place. Finally in 1990, after being pressured by Senator Daniel Inouye of Hawaii to do so, Secretary of State James Baker's office did confirm a F.O.I.A. de-classified World War Two file labeled 'Earhart, Amelia; Special War Problems' did exist in State Department archives. The State Department sent a letter to Senator Inouye stating the individual (in the case of 1984, archivist Patricia Morton who later appeared in an NBC Earhart special) who located and revealed the file she found was "not acting in an official capacity" when she came upon it. It is clear official history has tried hard to downplay the reality of Earhart's post-loss situation, allowing for Earhart mystery 'cottage industries' to empirically steer the curious in less controversial directions. While the case of Earhart's survival doesn't appear to have been characterized by a vast conspiracy, it is most certain that very few people, Amelia Earhart herself among them of course, were aware of such a long-ago private arrangement the public remained unaware of until 1970. Even then, after the Irene-Amelia dual identities truth first surfaced via the Joe Klaas book, Amelia Earhart Lives, Americans still could not conceptualize the possibility of Earhart's continued survival as another person, leaving official history to continued ignoring it.

 

PRESIDENT ROOSEVELT DURING PEARL HARBOR CONFERENCE. General MacArthur and Admiral Chester W. Nimitz on deck of the USS Baltimore with the President, July 1944.
 
Above: General Douglas MacArthur, President Franklin Roosevelt, Admiral Chester Nimitz on the USS Baltimore, July 1944. Famous figures from the World War Two era, there is no doubt they were aware of the Earhart post-loss situation on a higher level than the general public. In 1965 Admiral Nimitz plainly admitted it was quietly "known and documented in Washington" that Amelia Earhart had survived her last fligh and continued to exist under the auspice of Japan. Irene Craigmile Bolam's (the Gervais-Irene's) later life friends in General MacArthur's widow, Jean MacArthur and United States Senator, Barry Goldwater of Arizona were also linked to a greater understanding of the Earhart matter. As became the norm for certain war-time controversies though, at some point it was decided the official U. S. disposition about Amelia Earhart's disappearance would evermore be greeted with a let's move on attitude, or, "official silence." Thus it remained to evermore be officially recognized; After July 2, 1937, Amelia was a missing person until she was legally declared 'dead' two years later.

Amelia Earhart, age 26, before she became famous.
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Gervais-Irene
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Gervais-Irene & Amelia
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Two photos superimposed.

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Another Gervais-Irene photo...
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...superimposed with Amelia.

"I think of God as a symbol for good--thinking good, identifying good in everybody and everything. This God I think of is not an abstraction, but a vitalizing, universal force, eternally present, and at all times available." Amelia Earhart

Below Review: Since 1970, three nationally published books proclaimed that at some point after her 'disappearance' Amelia Earhart changed her name to 'Irene' and continued to live on in the United States after World War Two. Question: Why did they never gain wide acceptance? Answer: 'Official silence' left a confused general public unable to embrace them. It wasn't until the latent forensic realization of three women having employed the same 'Irene' identity, coupled with the obvious head-to-toe and character trait congruences shared by Amelia and the Gervais-Irene, along with the gained knowledge that nowhere did the Gervais-Irene appear identified as 'Irene' in the photo history of Irene O'Crowley Craigmile's person prior to the 1940s, that the truth finally revealed itself.  

The 1970 Joe Klaas, Joe Gervais book...
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...A New York Times best seller as well, determined Amelia 'privately' survived with Japan's help.
By Robert Myers & Barbara Wiley, 1985
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A first hand account; claimed Joe Gervais was right about the 'Irene' he met in 1965.
By Colonel Rollin Reineck, 2004
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Proclaimed Beyond 37's forensic analysis affirmed the Gervais-Irene used to be Amelia Earhart.

Note: In 1965 at a gathering of well-known retired pilots in East Hampton on Long Island, New York, World War Two hero, USAF Major Joe Gervais (Ret.) met one of three different women who were historically attributed to the same name of 'Irene Craigmile Bolam' (nee O'Crowley.) The one he met is labeled in Beyond 37's study as 'the Gervais-Irene.' The study revealed how the Gervais-Irene appeared nowhere identified as 'Irene' prior to the 1940s. Contrary to what became an assumed public opinion that all questions had been answered about it, official history and both Amelia's and the original Irene's family sidestepped their options to seriously address the controversy that Major Gervais so clearly recognized. This left the 'past identity' question of the Gervais-Irene to always remain unanswered by any means of official historical authority. 

Below: Retired USAF Major, Joe Gervais. He thoroughly investigated the background of the Irene he met and photographed in 1965. Against a constant barage of less-informed naysayers and unforgiving public scrutiny, he never disavowed his claim that she had previously been known as Amelia Earhart. He died in 2005. 

WWII hero & retired USAF Major Joe Gervais...
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...in 1983 on his way to Howland Island. Amelia never made there in 1937.

George Palmer Putnam 'discovered' Amelia in 1928.
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After they wed in 1931, he served as Amelia's promoter and manager until 1937. (See excerpt, right.)

George Palmer Putnam:
"Is there any way of ascertaining what the Japanese are actually doing? Especially as regards a real search of the eastern fringe of the Marshall Islands? That is one of the most fruitful possible locations for wreckage." Excerpt from a 7/31/37 George Palmer Putnam note to White House Attorney, Marvin Mcintyre, four weeks after Amelia was reported missing.
Jackie Cochran:
During the year before Amelia vanished, Jackie Cochran (shown on the right with Amelia) recalled of that time period, "I was closer to Amelia than anyone else, even her husband, George Putnam." The quote was taken from Jackie Cochran's 1987 autobiography by Maryann Bucknum Brinley, and was telling of the growing trouble signs in Amelia's marriage. Jackie Cochran replaced Amelia as 'the most famous female pilot' in the United States after 1937. She too befriended First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, headed up the WASP (Woman's Air Service Pilots) contingency during World War Two, and with the help of her good friend, Chuck Yeager she became the first woman to break the sound barrier. Jackie had married multi-millionaire, Floyd Odlum who helped with the enormous cost of Amelia's last flight. Amelia dedicated her final book, Last Flight to Floyd as a thank you. Jackie Cochran was also instrumental in getting Eisenhower elected President, and Ike and Mamie often stayed with Jackie and Floyd in Indio in the 1960s. Curiously, in the 1970s, at a function honoring heroic female pilots of the past, when Amelia Earhart's name was mentioned Jackie Cochran audibly acknowledged that Amelia would 'never show her face here after what she did,' indicating her awareness of something patriotically awry Amelia became caught up with after she went missing in 1937, and 'present tense' hinting of her continued existence as well. 

Amelia with Jackie Cochran, 1937
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Shown at the Odlum-Cochran ranch near Indio, CA where Amelia 'often visited alone.'

"Nobody in the public realm knows exactly where she was or what she was really doing those eight years she was gone. All we do know is by 1946 she was living on Long Island working as a bank figurehead by the name of Irene Craigmile." Joe Gervais quote from a 2001 filmed interview by Tod Swindell. 

The new Irene Craigmile (the Gervais-Irene)
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Front and center at a 1947 Peoples National Bank Christmas party

The RC-3 Seabee amphibious airplane
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The Gervais-Irene's bank financed the manufacturing of them in 1946.

Can a person change over time, to a point where they're no longer recognizable for who they used to be? Consider the following:

"We fancy ourselves as concrete things, something with boundaries, unchanging, and when we have occasion to refer to ourselves or examine ourselves introspectively, we believe we know what we refer to and are adamant in our avowal of self. The truth is we neither know ourselves nor are we the same from one moment in our lives to the next. If we think of ourselves as bodies, our changing self becomes apparent. It is nearly impossible even for families to recognize a loved one after thirty years of absence, so greatly has the self altered. And a little reflection upon the changing quality of consciousness is sure to give us some insight into the numberless selves our surface minds and egos have become since first appearing in the world." Uell Stanley Andersen (1917-1986)

Below are a few quotes displaying interesting, if not revealing sides of Amelia's private and public sides. The first two are from Susan Butler's 1997 Addison-Wesley Amelia Earhart biography, East To The Dawn. The 'Muhammed Ali' quote comes from Susan Ware's 1993 W.W. Norton Amelia Earhart biography, Still Missing; Amelia Earhart and the Search for Modern Feminism.  

"...Amelia's habit of concealment extended even to her closest of friends..."

"...averse as she was to ceding control of her life in any circumstance to someone else."

 Then again, when it came to speaking her mind; "Amelia was about as shy as Muhammad Ali."

What Most Private Investigative Researchers Mistakenly Assumed:
 
The majority of serious Earhart disappearance investigators always agreed that Mili Atoll of the lower Marshall Islands was where Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan went down and were rescued by Japan's Naval Authority. Japan denied holding them captive against their will and any suggestion of either of the two having died while in their care. Still, a common thread grew to exist where past researchers mistakenly assumed that Earhart and Noonan must have somehow died at some point subsequent to the ending of their last flight, in the broad circle of the Pacific Islands region they last flew in. 1.) Researcher Richard Gillespie (of Tighar) stressed that the two died on the island of Nikamororo of hunger and dehydration after they went down there. The trouble is there has never been any credible evidence introduced to support such a claim. 2.) CBS Radio Journalist, Fred Goerner asserted the duo went down on Mili Atoll and later died on Saipan; Earhart of dysentery and Noonan at the hands of a Japanese jail guard. Yet, no hard evidence supported Goerner's 'how they died' theory either. 3.) Researcher Mike Campbell and Amelia Earhart Society President, Bill Prymak expressed their beliefs that Thomas Devine was right about Earhart having been executed on Saipan, but no hard evidence supported their claim either, and again, Japan denied ever harming Earhart. 4.) Researcher Elgen Long claimed Earhart and Noonan flew back and forth and in circles for hours looking for Howland, before they ultimately crashed into the sea and drowned, although few people agreed with him after they weighed the overwhelming preponderance of evidence that contradicted his hypothesis.
 
Where official history never formally addressed it, and the above researchers professed Earhart's continued private survival was untrue even though it was never proven untrue, the following question remained to be asked: Was it possible Amelia Earhart could have survived her disappearance and then quietly continued to exist with a new name and a strong desire for future privacy without public awareness? The answer: Of course it was. And anymore it is clear that's exactly what happened, like it or not.
 

"Where history treated Amelia Earhart unfairly, it is mainly because a difference existed between what the public thought it understood about the time period of her last flight, compared to what it did not later recall. One important fact; Amelia was an anti-war pacifist who was not affected by the growing negative feelings toward Japan in 1937, four years before Pearl Harbor happened. She was adhering to an isolationist stance, and during her last flight she wrote favorably of all nations she visited. Amelia also spoke several languages to include Japanese, she adored Japan's culture and she was a hero there in the 1930s just as Babe Ruth had been. She always chose to do things her own way, and in effect, when the Sino-Japanese war broke out on July 7, 1937--just five days after she was declared a missing person, she was pretty much gone forever right then." Beyond 37'

"Do not believe in what you've heard. Do not believe in tradition because it is handed down many generations. Do not believe in anything that has been spoken of many times. Do not believe because the written statements come from some old sage. Do not believe in conjecture. Do not believe in authority or teachers or elders. But after careful observation and analysis, when it agrees with reason and it will benefit one and all, then accept it and live by it."

Buddah (563 B.C. - 483 B.C.)

 

Click here to e-mail Irene-Amelia.com and/or Beyond 37', or just e-mail EarhartTruth@Irene-Amelia.com

NOTE: The Irene-Amelia.com website was launched in 2007 by Beyond 37'. Beyond 37's comprehensive Forensic Analysis and Forensic Comparison Study that 1.) Proved more than one person employed the same 'Irene' identity, and 2.) Displayed the head-to-toe congruence the Gervais-Irene shared with Amelia Earhart first began in 1996 and was copyrighted in 2002. Beyond 37's two-hundred and eighty-two page original manuscript, Protecting Earhart: The Beautiful Alter Ego and Silent Legacy of History's Most Famous Flying Heroine is housed and registered at the Writers Guild of America (west), #1033972. To contact Beyond 37' e-mail EarhartTruth@Irene-Amelia.com. Beyond 37' dedicates all efforts to the late USAF Major Joseph A. Gervais (1924-2005) and the late USAF Col. Rollin C. Reineck (1920-2007). Both were World War Two heroes who learned the basic Irene-Amelia truth decades ago. A special thanks also goes out to Ann Holtgren Pellegreno, whose enormous help with supplying never before made public 'Irene' photo data in 2002 paved the way for the forensic comparison study to finally reach its realistic conclusion. Thanks as well to Bazzell Baz, who breathed new life into the Beyond 37' endeavor in the late 1990s by daring to go where others didn't.
 
Major Gervais, who was considered by many to have been the most knowledgeable Amelia Earhart investigative researcher to ever pursue the truth, first discovered the Irene-Amelia reality in 1965. The controversial 1970 McGraw-Hill book by Joe Klaas, Amelia Earhart Lives expounded on the enormous amount of Joe Gervais' investigative research and displayed the first nationally published photo of Irene Bolam, AKA the Gervais-Irene. Regardless of the fallout caused by Amelia Earhart Lives, Major Gervais and Colonel Reineck spent the last four decades of their lives working to advance the claim of Earhart's name-changed survival to authenticity after enduring their own in-depth investigative analysis of the evidence that supported it. Colonel Reineck's book Amelia Earhart Survived was published in late 2003 and was greatly inspired by the Irene-Amelia forensic studies of Beyond 37'. Portions of the analysis appeared in the Reineck book, although many more samples are displayed in Irene-Amelia.com. Beyond 37' and Irene-Amelia.com are owned and managed by Tod Swindell and Aether Pictures, LLC of Pasadena, California.

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