Tuesday, January 17, 2017

A tribute to Mother

On Wednesday, January 11, 2017 my mother Marianne Kantorp, (formerly Gun Blomqvist), died peacefully at Vrinnevi hospital, Norrköping. She spent the last two and a half years at Granen nursing home, Norrköping, where she is greatly missed by the staff because of her cheerful and good-humoured disposition. My mother was born in Karlstad, province of Värmland, 1930 and she lived to be 86 years. In 1953 she married my father Maths Blomqvist. They were divorced in 1991.

Mother, August 16, 2000

I am eternally grateful for the inspiration and good influence mother had on my life. One Winter evening in the beginning of the 1960s, when I was around ten years old, we went for a walk to get rid of some bulky trash nearby our then place of living in Södertälje. It was a beautiful, starry night and mother told me about various constellations and stars. This awe-inspiring experience so greatly influenced me that I as soon as possible visited the local public library to borrow books on astronomy. In 1963 our family moved to a new apartment in Södertälje which made it possible for me to watch the sky from a very good position. I spent many nights there with a small telescope, studying the Moon and counting meteors. Mother constantly admonished me to not to stay out to long as I would catch a cold. During these teenage years I learned as much as I could about astronomy and the Greek and Roman myths and legends behind the constellations.

Mother as a young girl

The middle 1960s was a very active and exciting period of manned spaceflights. I followed with eager anticipation the Gemini spaceflights 1965-1966, collecting press clippings and tape recording as much as I could from radio and TV. A teacher at school noted my dedicated interest and once I was even allowed to skip a lesson to make a tape recording.

My mother was from early in life a spiritual seeker and an avid reader. This deep interest was reflected in the library she built up at our home. There were books on Spiritualism, Theosophy, Anthroposophy, ancient mysteries and all the early UFO contactee books from the Swedish publishing house Parthenon. Authors like George Adamski, Daniel Fry, Ray and Rex Stanford, Elisabeth Klarer a.o. Mother also sometimes consulted various Spiritualist mediums.

One of the books I found in the family library

As a young teenager I discovered these books in our family library and became deeply fascinated by all these subjects, especially UFOs. Mother was somewhat apprehensive of my newly found interests but she was also happy that I shared her interests and we spent many evenings at the kitchen table discussing and pondering all the mysteries of life and the universe. In this respect mother became my first teacher and introducer into the world of the unknown. An interest that eventually developed into a serious research venture and the foundation of Archives for UFO Research - AFU (Archives for the Unexplained) in 1973.

My mothers last visit to AFU, March 27, 2011

My mother´s deep interest in the unexplained was probably partly caused by several paranormal experiences. She often told me of a very physical encounter she had while a young girl of around eight or nine years old. During one Summer day the family was visiting relatives at Sköldinge, Södermanland and was having coffee in the garden. Mother was playing by herself and strolled on a small pathway nearby. At this pathway she suddenly met her grandfather, Lars Johan Karlsson. He patted her on the head and mentioned how much she had grown. They strolled a bit together and mother ran ahead to announce to all the relatives at the coffee-table that grandfather was coming. She was immediately told to be silent by the embarrassed party. Grandfather had recently died but mother was adamant in her conviction that she had just met him on the pathway. She never forgot this intriguing experience and often narrated how very physical the meeting had been to her.

Mother during one of our many holiday trips to Karlstad, Värmland. June 26, 2001

Painting made by mother 1995

In my first UFO book 1993 I wrote this dedication: "To Mother - who inspired me to gaze up at the stars". She truly made me reach for the stars and dedicate my life to the mystery of existence.

Mother with her copy of my first UFO book, December 24, 1993

Bon voyage Mother! I am confident you now have a more pleasant life in another part of the multiverse. I will always cherish your memory and be forever grateful for your love and caring.

The last picture, November 11, 2016