Starting in 2011, readers remembered the death of actor Ernest Borgnine (January 24, 1917 – July 8, 2012) . He was in McHale’s Navy and ER. He was the voice of Mermaid Man in SpongeBob SquarePants, and he won an Oscar for his bittersweet leading role in Marty.
In April 2011, Cliff said in a longer comment:
I often find myself having conversations with people who do not or differently remember events from the past.
Here are a few… The death of Ernest Borgnine.
I remember Ernest Borgnine’s death a while ago. At the time, I thought, “Wow… he had to be pretty old. I didn’t know he was still around.” Borgnine’s death didn’t surprise me until I later saw him interviewed on TV, and he is (obviously) still alive. (As of April 2011, anyway.)
He’s always had such a rubbery, craggy face, I never had a clear impression of his age.
But, when he died, I also remember being surprised that people didn’t make a bigger deal about it. I also recall no one mentioning him in the context of his Academy Award-winning performance in the movie, Marty. I thought that was sad, because that performance showed a range of talent far beyond his fame on McHale’s Navy.
Several readers remember Freddie Prinze Jr. and Sarah Michelle Gellar getting married and having a baby around 2003 or 2004.
When I first read a comment about that, I had to look it up. At the time (April 2011), Wikipedia didn’t mention either the marriage or children. It said that Freddie Prinze Jr. had dated Sarah Michelle Gellar, but they broke up. There was no mention of children.
That didn’t fit my memories, though I can’t claim that I thought the event was as far back as 2003. (However, it was prior to 2009.) I didn’t think about it again until I was writing this article. I always double-check my sources and try to link to them.
David Soul‘s name keeps coming up in discussions. Many people seem to recall him dying, years ago.
Here are some comments from this website:
Perry Ware said:
We also remember that David Soul of the 70′s show Starsky and Hutch comiting suicide on or near christmas because he was dispondant over his wife’s cancer! Even news reports of relatives and police discovering his body underneath the christmas tree. You can imagine myself and my wife’s reaction when we saw David Soul make an appearance as a cameo on the remake of Starsky and Hutch movie. We sat in silence and stunned by the revelation that Mr. Soul was indeed alive.
C. A. Low raised the topic in April 2011, mentioning:
…the death of Muammar Gaddafi several years ago.
Laura said in 2013:
As soon as I read what you said about previously remembering Gaddafis death I started gagging. This is really strange, I am not an emotional person but I am sitting here and my eyes are welling up. What is this? I remember this. Footage of a runway and a white plane. Omg.
same here. im covered in goosebumps.
Photo credit: In the public domain, per Wikipedia.
Though Neil Armstrong died on 25 August 2012, it seems as if many people “forgot” it. When a badly phrased headline appeared at ABC news, talking about the one-year anniversary of Armstrong’s death, many people thought he’d died in 2013.
While some may have been busy a year ago, and missed the initial obituary, many others are clearly fans and followers of Neil Armstrong’s legacy. How were their memories “wiped” so his 2013 death was forgotten? That question was raised by many people, including David Emery at About.com’s Urban Legends topic.
Others point out that Shakespeare’s plays — as we know them — weren’t formally compiled until after his death. Those versions of the plays include heavy input from the actors who played in them, and they may have “improved” the plays.
While this isn’t exactly what we’re talking about at this website, this video is useful. It conveys a (possibly) relevant way of looking at time in a non-linear way.
Referencing different timestreams, it’s possible that — in those other realities — events in your (alternate) life are in a different sequence.
Or, as an alternate explanation of the Mandela Effect: Maybe you’re “remembering” things from the future… a future you’ve seen (in real life or dreams) due to something like Al’s time travel explanation.
In a discussion at the G+ community, Alternate History, some interesting issues have been raised.
A community member shared a lengthy, cached article about someone’s belief that Nelson Mandela died Tuesday, 25 June 2013.
This is part of that cached article:
Here’s some of my reply at the G+ community, with notes.
The obvious question is: Was that more evidence of the Mandela Effect? The first “mistaken” report could be a simple mistake. In fact, it most probably was. But, to be fair, it’s difficult to evaluate with so little information about that report.
What caught my attention was the second “mistaken” report in the article. The writer said about that source, “She is trusted and was very convinced about the accuracy of this and her source, and she was very specific in what she was told – that he had died a half hour earlier and that the President was going to make the announcement at ten pm.”
Those are the kinds of specific details we see in credible Mandela Effect events, but with social media and its inherent flaws, it’s not evidence I can work with. For example, the Huffington Post offered the following credible explanation.
So, the waters have been thoroughly muddied, at least in terms of reports related to Mandela’s death in June 2013.
Despite (or because of?) these gaffes, more people seem to be examining conflicting Mandela-related memories. Even for those of us who are okay with Mandela Effect concepts, this seems like an unsettling time.
For some of us, these past couple of weeks have seemed surreal at times. Personally, it’s as if I’m watching a reality being constructed, a few hours at a time.
It’s as if the “fixed” points — using another G+ community member’s description — are arriving first in this timestream. Then, the connect-the-dots events between them are being filled in spontaneously. (This is difficult to articulate, but I hope you get my point.)
The thing is, if we believe the quantum theory that every potentiality exists in some reality (or dimension, universe, timestream, etc.), it’s possible that Nelson Mandela has died many times in the past few days and weeks… but not in this timestream.
The majority of new, conflicting reports can be explained by rumors set wild in social media. It’s essential to keep critical thinking skills engaged. Verify everything as best you can.
However, despite reporting errors, this is an intriguing time for those of us studying the Mandela Effect. That’s not just about history in this timestream, as well as alternative history. It’s also an opportunity to see the effects of social media and news reports, and how they influence our memories and — at times — form or restructure them.
And, personally, I’m sketching the visual images I recall from Nelson Mandela’s death, years ago. I’m going to watch to see how many of them reappear in the future… though I hope it’s many years away.
Many people — including me — remember Billy Graham’s funeral on TV, prior to his February 2018 death.
My own memories placed Graham’s death close — within weeks, possible a month or two, at the very most — to the time when Ted Kennedy died. I remember that the weather was warm in New England.
At the time, I didn’t think Billy Graham’s funeral was especially odd. I didn’t watch much of the funeral and burial coverage, but I can remember flipping through TV channels, and seeing most networks carrying the event. I remember thinking, at Ted Kennedy’s funeral, “Wow. We just had lots of shows pre-empted by Billy Graham’s funeral. I guess that kind of coverage has become standard.”
I clearly remember the funeral, and related TV coverage for several days.
Apparently, this “memory” is prevalent… perhaps more prevalent than the Nelson Mandela ones. I’ve actually argued with a friend because she was 100% certain that Billy Graham had died. She, too, remembered the funeral on TV. It took Wikipedia to prove that we both had odd, completely identical memories… that never happened. Not in this timestream, anyway.
Many readers have their own memories of Billy Graham’s death, funeral, and burial. Mostly, they recall the TV coverage.
And — like me — most are entirely certain they aren’t mixing it up with Billy Graham’s wife’s funeral, which had some coverage on TV news shows. (Ruth Graham died in 2007. Ted Kennedy passed in 2009. That’s not close enough for me to connect in my memories.)
Tamara Thorne said:
I don’t have any recollections about Mandela, but do have pretty clear memories of Billy Graham’s death.
Marna Ehrich said:
wait, wait, wait… Billy Graham is alive??? since when? I remember his death, but not his coming back …
Margaret’s comments included:
… I also remember Nelson Mandela’s funeral and the deaths of Billy Graham, Dom Deluise, Ernest Borgnine and Mickey Rooney. It’s all very interesting.
Billy Graham for a surety. I test it on my mother and asked her, “You remember Billy Graham dying right ?” To which she replied “Yeah he died from Alzheimer’s.” When I informed her that he was still in fact alive she said, “Oh well then he was in hospital from it”.
Jeff said (in March 2012):
So Billy Graham didn’t die? I distinctly remember hearing about his death! I really can’t be sure about Mandella though I did think he was dead, I remember hearing about Ernest Borgnine dying, but he is still alive apparently!
[In a later comment] Thinking about it some more, I distinctly remember seeing Billy Graham’s funeral procession on TV!
Billy Graham is dead,yes? if not, please provide a link, i remember him passing about a year or two ago, as does my wife.
My mom and I both also “remember” Mandela dying in prison as well as Billy Graham dying soon after retiring.
i do believe i heard about billy graham’s death.
Interesting on so many levels. I am in the same boat in regards to Mandela, Billy Graham, Australia!, 52 States (I am European),etc, etc.
I just last month had a discussion with a friend. I swore Billy Graham died and I watched his funeral on TV and so many people in tears and the sadness of such a great man being laid to rest and being honored by the Presidents and I even remember Bill Clinton speaking words in his honor…my friend said I was crazy. I asked my mother and she remembers us talking about his passing. I just don’t know what to think…
I also thought Billy Graham was gone, for sure, seeming to recall something with his son speaking, etc.
Running across this string via FaceBook seems so odd to me, but here I am… I remember Billy Graham dying & I was also jolted by the comment about Honduras. I have always thought it was an island also.
Kate’s comments included:
i also remember clearly the David Soule death—(i am shocked, up until I read this just now I still thought he was dead!) AND the Billy Graham death (Shocked)
Weird, I remember Billy Graham dying too….
When I first read this article, I thought you meant that some people remember Billy Graham as being still alive. After I understood, I was shocked and had to double and triple check before fully believing it. I can clearly remember the death of Billy Graham and watching an interview of his widow talking about events from his life, his evangelism, how the two met, ect, with my grandma and talking about what a shame it was that such a good man died. I asked her if she remembered any of it, and was shocked when she told me that the only thing she could remember was his wife dying a few years ago. I thought she must be mistaken until I googled it. In my timeline I can remember channel surfing and her being on television with her son no longer than a year ago. The only reason I remember is because the Grahams live close to where I was born/grew up and at the time I thought it was cool that a local family was on television.
That’s pretty wild about the TV station making a mistake like that. I mean, it’s not as if the staff would run with a major story without double-checking it, right…? And, they’re referencing CBS News, which is the central office all the CBS affiliates get their information from. So, that makes this doubly strange. It sounds like someone in the news chain had a Mandela moment, and maybe more of them did.
My friend, who I often talked about this kind of thing with years ago, pointed out to me tonight that Nelson Mandela and Billy Graham were born in the same year. Just some interesting serendipity. or is it? lol
I remember a lot of these, Nelson Mandela and Billy Graham both dying in the 90′s.
This means that there may be multiple timestreams represented here. My Billy Graham “memory” was definitely related to Ted Kennedy’s death in 2009, and others have referenced other years for Billy Graham’s death. So, if we’re “sliding” in and out of alternate timelines, we’re not all visiting the same one.
Chris provided some great details:
I am (or rather was until now!) certain that Billy Graham had died. I was only talking about him the other day in passing to my partner and we both agreed that he was a bit of a looney! I remember seeing parts of the funeral on TV and in the papers (UK Times if I remember rightly!!). It was a big deal to the Evangelicals in the States and I definitely remember there were a lot of people mourning him – it felt more like the funeral of a monarch/state funeral. There was a white sheet over his coffin with a gold eagle on it (or certainly some gold symbol) as it was carried by the bearers.
kat smith said:
Billy Grahams death puzzles me, I remember it occuring a few months before Ronald Reagans death.My mother and I sat at our little 13″ monitor in the kitchen….with flashes on the bottom screen about Billy Grahams death, in attendence was George senior to the left of Jr..Bill Clinton to the right in Blue covered chairs….the casket draped in a white cloth was paraded infront off the former presidents….as it was carried up the isle….I remember his son, widdow, and Bill Clinton speaking….it was held outdoors in NC……that day was very vivid, my mother remembers it as well..
This is a very intriguing topic. I’m among the people who don’t remember Mandela dying in prison, however I’ve encountered several people over the years who did remember his death and were just as surprised as you were. I do, however, remember the death and funeral of Billy Graham, not to mention countless other celebrities who turned out later to be very much alive. Those other celebrities could very well have been misreported deaths, as sometimes happens, but the thing with Graham is, like others commenting, I remember the funeral on TV. Maybe it was a funeral for someone else that I’m remembering, but I was just as shocked as anyone to learn he was still alive.
Those are the Billy Graham comments at this website, so far.