Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Gary Galka of DAS Distributing, Maker of the MEL Meter

Photo at Left:
NAPS Team Leader Mike Chapman and Gary Galka of DAS Distributing, maker of the MEL Meter, named after his daughter Melissa who died in a tragic auto accident in 2006.

It was an immense pleasure and honor to finally meet Gary Galka. Gary, Kim Frith and me (Mike Chapman) were able to meet up at a Ruby Tuesday's restaurant in Connecticut a couple of weeks ago. Gary makes the MEL Meter, the RT-EVP, the static pod and the P-SB7 spirit box as seen and used by paranormal investigators around the world. Gary is a warm, personable guy who deeply cares about such values as family, charity, and giving. He and his own family now help others who have lost loved-ones through the grieving process. I have spoken elsewhere about Gary's daughter Melissa, how she was lost in a tragic car accident, and how after death communications with Melissa changed Gary's life and those of his wife and other two daughters. Quite honestly, it makes me a bit uncomfortable to write about something so tragic and personal as the loss of a daughter, having a seventeen year-old of my own. I mention this however, because Gary is such an inspiration in how he has taken that unimaginable tragedy and has not run from it, or tried to escape it. Instead, he grieves, and he loves, and he acts. In short, he lives on, in just the kind of way that I'm sure Melissa is very proud of. In an age absent of heroes and inspirational men, Gary's example is certainly worth writing about.

An engineer by profession, after Mel's death Gary turned his attention to providing high quality equipment and instruments that will make a significant difference in the paranormal investigation field. It has become his passion, and it is infectious! It was a blast to hear Gary speak about instruments and equipment he has specially made for such TV stars as Zak Bagans and other plans he has for the future, which I won't mention because I'm not sure Gary wants that out just yet. It has me excited, for sure!

Most of our conversation though, centered around such human issues such as integrity, character, and building trust. Unfortunately, those aren't topics most of us spend enough time talking about. Though Kim and I had just met Gary, we spent a relaxing and very enjoyable two and a half hours speaking with a man who has amazing talent and intellect, and also works very hard to be the best he can be. I was also very struck by his deep love for his wife and children, and he spoke about the lessons learned in his life. I came away very inspired by Gary to do several things: work harder at what I do, pay attention to the small things, love the people deeply who I'm blessed to be with, let them know I love them, help the people I can help, and to be generous with my time and resources.

Thanks Gary, for taking the time to spend with us, and for sharing your life.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Connecticut Trip Inspiring!

by NAPS Team Leader Mike Chapman

Case Manager Kim Frith and I are back from an amazing weekend trip to Connecticut where we were blessed to meet Gary Galka, Tony Spera and Lorraine Warren. I'll have much more to say in the coming days about this trip, and how it has deeply inspired us to see firsthand their deep commitment and love of this field.

Photo at left:
The infamous Annabelle Doll in the Warren's occult museum. This museum impressed me more than I thought it would. It is the "real deal" and made up of countless objects from cases Ed and Lorraine handled in their long career. I took this photo with a standard digital camera.

All three of them deeply impressed us with their genuineness and friendliness as people who are down to earth and very real, humble people. I have posted here a few photos off of my camera, of Tony and Lorraine. Kim's camera has the photos with Gary, and we will get those up soon. Both of us return to work tonight 6pm to 6am, and we have a case to go to Wednesday night..."the work" (as Lorraine calls it) goes on! Enjoy the photos and more will follow soon.

Photo at Left:
Kim at the entrance to the Warren's occult museum.

Photo at Left:
Me with Lorraine. We discovered a mutual devotion to Padre Pio, and discussed this at length. What an awesome pleasure to meet her and speak to her about "the work!" She is a very strong believer and inspiration about how it is crucial to bring strong Christian faith to this field, especially demonic cases.

Photo at Left:
Mike and Tony enjoying a lighter moment.

Photo at Left:
Kim with Lorraine

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Old Adams County Jail Investigation on 14th

Monday, November 14, members of the Natchez Area Paranormal Society will be investigating the Old County Jail in a full investigation. We regularly investigate the Old Jail and have had many experiences of significant paranormal activity there. On this occasion, we will have four or five special guests observing and taking part in our investigation.

As for equipment, we will be using over eight static cameras and various additional dynamic cams including two camcorders, deep infrared, full spectrum and Flir i7 thermal imaging cameras. Two DVRs will be employed, as well as many various atmospheric instruments including EMF detectors.

This investigation will also be used to train our investigators as part of our ongoing team training efforts.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Three New Investigators Join the Team!

by NAPS Team Leader Mike Chapman

Congratulations to Michelle McAllister, Betty Blanton and Jamie Walker who recently completed the application process and joined the Natchez Area Paranormal Society as Paranormal Investigators-In-Training. These ladies bring a talented array of skills, energy and ability to the Team, and we are extremely excited about them joining us. Welcome to the Team!

With the addition of these three investigators, we now have 13 paranormal investigators as part of our team. As Team Leader, I am very pleased that God has answered our prayers and has led us to the people that are part of our organization. The people we have in place now are dedicated and motivated, and are mature professionals who show up and do the work necessary. As I stated in our Team Meeting Friday night, I am extremely proud of the members and investigators we now have on our Team. The quality people that you all are, are indeed just the kind of people I want to be associated with! The people we have on the team are proving how amazingly dedicated they are to helping people, and show by their actions that they have a lot of love to give others who need our assistance.

For a list of Team Members, click here.

All of you have many other things to do, but share so unselfishly of your time, money, and gifts to make this an excellent team and set a standard for other teams to emulate. I am also very proud of your investigative talents, your hard work, your community service, the conclusions you reach, and the follow-up work you do with our clients.

Keep up the amazing work!

Websites Making Global Impact: 82 Countries

Our online presence continues to see remarkable readership and response from visitors all over the world!  October 9, 2011, marked the one year anniversary of N.A.P.S. launching our multiple website strategy.  We went public with our main website on October 10, 2010. 

That site, located at URL http://www.natchezparanormal.com 
serves as our "anchor" site and exists to meet the needs and answer the questions of potential clients who feel they may need an investigation done in their home or place of business.  Since that time, we have launched 3 more of our other total of 6 eventual/planned sites, so we still have two more remaining to build and launch.  Hopefully, we will be able to launch our Paranormal Education site and a more expanded and detailed Case Files & Evidence site sometime this year.

In a little over 12 months time, combined visits to all our sites have now gone well over the 20,000 hit count with visitors from 82 countries worldwide, and all 50  of the United States.  Thank you to all of you who visit our sites!

Our Current Sites:
Main Website: (for Clients & Basic Team Info) www.natchezparanormal.com
Blog Site: (Team News & Goings-On) www.natchezghosts.blogspot.com  This Site!
Historical Archives Site: (History) www.napshistory.blogspot.com
Demonology Site: (SOR Unit Home Site) www.napsdemonology.blogspot.com

82 Countries We've Received Visitors From:
Bosnia & Herzegovina

Costa Rica
Czech Republic



New Zealand

Puerto Rico

Saudi Arabia
South Africa
Sri Lanka

Trinidad & Tobago
United Arab Emirates
United States


Marianas Islands Republic in Pacific
Cyprus in Mediterranean

All 50 U.S. States!
We have received visitors from all 50 States! Thanks everyone for visiting our site!

Visitors from Well-Known Global Cities:
Auckland, Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Kobe, Taipei, Hanoi, Ho Chi Mihn City, Mumbai, Calcutta, Kochi, Palermo, Milan, Paris, Kaiserslautern, Moscow, Glascow, Dublin, Limerick, Birmingham, Derbyshire, London, Reading, Sao Paulo, Buenos Aires, Cordoba, Lima, Saint Michael, Hamilton, Ottowa, Victoria, New York, Chicago, Seattle, Honolulu, Los Angeles, Dallas, Miami, Washington, D.C.; Kathmandu; Cape Town; Madrid, Cairo; Reykjavik; Dubai; Athens; Tehran; Istanbul; Lima; Rio de Janero; Tel Aviv; Jerusalem; Limerick; Rangoon; Bangkok; Natchez and many more! 

Top Paranormal Sites: Top 10 and Top 100
On the website topparanormalsites, N.A.P.S., for many weeks, has consistently ranked in the top 100 of ALL genres of paranormal sites worldwide, including Ghost, UFO and Cryptozoology sites (usually in the 70 to 80 range). In addition, we consistently rank around from 5th to 8th of all Paranormal Investigators' sites - so a TOP 10 ranking in our category!

Thank you to all of you who drop in and visit, especially our regular readers!  Please let us know how we can serve you better, and what you would like to hear more about!

NAPS Team Dates - Short & Long-Term

All NAPS Members and Investigators are urged to mark the following dates in their calendars, as we scheduled the following at our Meeting Friday night:

Nov 6     Clean-up at Meadvilla cemetery

Nov 14   Old County Jail Investigation with 5 special guests

Nov 18 to
Nov 20   Mike Chapman and Kim Frith to Connecticut to meet Lorraine Warren,
                 Tony Spera & lunch with Gary Galka (maker of the MEL meter and other equipment)

Dec   2   December NAPS Team Meeting & Christmas Party

Dec 16   Mathiston, MS Investigation

June 22-23  Team Trip to AGS Haunted America Conference in Illinois

NAPS is an Official Affiliate Team of the AGS so we strongly urge EVERY member to attend this Conference!!! Start saving now! Tickets go on sale mid-January 2012. We will be driving in multiple vehicles and sharing expenses for fuel, etc.

Skype Working Well!

For the first time in a NAPS meeting, we used Skype to link to a team member who lives in another city, and the process was a rousing success. Friday night's meeting (11/4/2011) in the Civil Defense headquarters conference room was attended not just by those physically in the building!

Lauren, our investigator in Jackson, Mississippi, also attended via Skype. As with all our first time "adventures," we are looking for ways to improve the mechanics of it, but having our distant investigator "at the meeting" on video and audio was awesome! This is an effective means for our investigators who are separated from us to feel much more a part and not be as isolated as they have been in the past. It keeps them up to date on latest news, includes them in on team decisions, input on setting dates for investigations and team meetings, and all the while they can see and be seen on the screen. It's fun to use technology that works to connect us in ways we never had before! I would definitely suggest teams use Skype as a means to conduct their meetings when they have people scattered and can't easily attend meetings, especially with gas prices as high as they are. One thing however that does need to be mentioned...it certainly helps to have a very good Internet connection speed on both ends.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Team Meeting Friday 11/4 at 6:30pm

A reminder that we will be having our November NAPS Team Meeting Friday night 11/4 beginning at 6:30pm at the Civil Defense Offices on State Street.

This is located in the basement of the Sheriff's Office building on State Street, accessed in the rear of the building down the steps. The public is invited to attend, and guests are welcome. Investigators, please bring a notebook and pen to take notes. We will be going up to the Old Jail afterwards to do an outing, so bring any equipment you want to use with you.

See you there!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Dowsing Rods: I've Gone Low-Tech!

by Kim Frith, a NAPS Team Dowser

In the field of paranormal research, there are many wonderful pieces of equipment that enable us to see and hear activity while on an investigation or during an outing. (We NAPS members are notorious for impromptu trips and outings.) We are still learning subtle details on the capabilities and technical aspects of some of the high tech equipment that we have had for a long time. Michael Delorenze, our Lead Technical Mr. Fix-It, is constantly explaining features of such high-tech equipment that we have yet to take full advantage of in the field.
As we employ the latest cutting edge equipment and techniques in our quest to help those facing paranormal activity or participate in spirit rescue, I am compelled toward both ends of the spectrum: from complexity on one end, to simplicity on the other.  Truly, when the full spectrum of available technology is given consideration, evidence cross-substantiation then occurs, making for a stronger case and a more definitive resolution or finding.
For me, the simplistic or low tech piece of equipment I prefer is a set of homemade dowsing rods. I am speaking of polarity dowsing, and not "divination" dowsing. I will forgo the history and past uses of dowsing rods, to focus on the journey I have taken to understand, learn, and become efficient with their use in the realm of paranormal investigation.
It all began with Don Estes, one of our NAPS consultants, dowsing for human remains during an investigation last winter. It took all of thirty seconds for me to be interested in the concept of polarity and understanding what information the rods were communicating.  After NAPS concluded with that case, I contacted Don to see if he would be open and interested in teaching another NAPS investigator and me how to dowse.

A couple of weeks later, we were in the historical Natchez City Cemetery, freezing our tails off but otherwise elated to have our first dowsing lesson. Don said that we must find our “sweet spot” and to practice, practice, practice! In the cemetery that day, we were dowsing marked and unmarked graves, learning to distinguish the gender of those buried beneath us and measuring the length of the bodies. Did I mention that we were told to practice, practice, and practice? As our lesson progressed, Don said that both of us had a natural ability to dowse. By the end of our session, we both had found our “sweet spot” and were able to repeat our tests with accuracy. We left the cemetery with homework. You guessed it! We were instructed to practice, practice and practice.
Over the next several months, I dowsed every chance I got. In my yard where pets are buried, overgrown cemeteries, public parks, friend’s houses and investigation sites provided diverse environments for me to sharpen my skills and learn the difference between buried remains, water lines and power lines.  Dowsing rods operate on polarity, meaning opposite properties such as positive and negative. This is why it is important to find your “sweet spot”. For me, that is a place of neutrality. When I can hold my rods and they remain neutral, then I am ready to dowse. As the rods move out of the neutral position, there is a shift in polarity which requires energy. In grave dowsing, this energy comes from the polarity of the remains beneath me.
Photo at Left:
FLIRi7 photo of Kim's mentor Don Estes dowsing for remains on a case in Franklin County, Mississippi. Don was successful in locating the remains of a female, 5'7" tall, on the exact spot where a landowner said she saw the apparition of an Indian telling her, "My mother is buried here."

Now, let’s shift gears to paranormal investigations. I wanted to expand the use of dowsing rods to include my role in NAPS. Since the rods work on polarity and a shift in energy, wouldn’t it stand to reason that they would be reactive amid paranormal activity? I had to find out!
During the next few outing with NAPS members, I began to take my dowsing rods and experiment with them. As I would walk around grounds of abandoned old homes, historical site and grown up cemeteries, the rods would awaken me to numerous things present but unseen to the naked eye. Discoveries were made including unmarked graves, underground water tables and unconventional uses in ghost hunting.
It is a universal belief in the paranormal community that a spirit may draw from the atmospheric energy, batteries, and even people to manifest and communicate with living humans. As this energy is being drawn, manipulated and concentrated for use, investigators measure this activity or ask the spirit to operate a piece of equipment such as light up LEDs, speak into a recorder, turn something on or off, etc. As a fan of low tech equipment, I simply ask for this energy to be used to move the rods.
What an amazing display of energy and intelligence when an investigator asks a question and you can see the rods respond. It’s important to note here that only yes or no questions work with dowsing rods as they only move inward toward one another or outward away from each other. Changing the wording of questions or indicating the desire for the direction of yes/no responses to suddenly be reversed, helps to authenticate the communication.
Another vital piece of information to note is that you, as an investigator, must absolutely trust your dowser. Whereas water, electricity and graves can be confirmed by more than one dowser on more than one occasion, intelligent spirits may prefer to communicate with one dowser over another or may altogether stop communicating during an investigation.  Knowing that your dowser is going to be honest above all is paramount to the integrity of the investigation and the team.
I admit that dowsing isn’t an exact science. There has been much debate about dowsing and the useful techniques involved. Don Estes was right. It takes lots of practice to become proficient with your dowsing rods. If a person doesn’t spend the necessary time building the skill set for accurate and efficient dowsing, I would say they are a dowsing hobbyist and recommend you find a committed dowser to assist you in your investigation.
There has been some scientific evidence that NAPS members have gathered during dowsing rod use on investigations and outings. During a recent outing, the rods started to pulsate and “dance”, as I call it. I felt this energy and the movement of the rods and mentioned it to my team. Kimberly Delorenze immediately turned around and snapped a photo using our full spectrum camera. Upon review, a ball of energy can be seen between the two rods that I was using. Also, there are temperature differentiations seen with the FLIR when the rods are used in question and answer sessions.
Photo at Left: A close view of the photo reveals an energy orb right between the ends of the two rods. This photo was taken because the investigators suddenly sensed a presence.
As dowsing rods become more of a standard piece of equipment for NAPS, others on my team have picked up my rods and asked for instruction. As their faces light up in amazement and they say to me, “I’m not moving these rods,” I tell them that I know and watch as they discover just as I have. Then it is understood just how exhausting it is to hold them perfectly still so that your work as a dowser is pure.
I enjoy demonstrating the techniques of dowsing and watching the faces of those astonished by the movement of the rods. Michael, our Lead Technical Mr. Fix-It, is committed to educating the public concerning all investigation equipment, high and low tech, and is always ready to volunteer in demonstrations. I think he enjoys it as much as I when people learn about who we are, what we do, how we do it and the equipment we use.
As the uses of dowsing rods expand in NAPS, other investigators have come on board to learning and broadening their awareness of dowsing usefulness. It does make me happy to hear our team members now explain the use of dowsing in normal and paranormal aspects. 
If you would like more information or to schedule a free demonstration for your group, please feel free to contact me. [For Kim's contact information go to our Main Website -link below- and click on the Contacts page].

Editor's Note: Other forms of low-tech equipment NAPS uses are trigger objects, era cues, spirit test items, Christian symbols and sacramentals. We maintain a large inventory of such objects and cues in a variety of categories (such as Civil War era, music, and Native American), and have been successful during investigations having a few of them manipulated by unseen spirits.