Personal Update

By | December 18, 2020

  Greetings everyone.

I’ve been away for the past few days, and although I had hoped to be able to post a few things it turned out to be not in the cards.

Two days ago I drove from Rochester to Ithaca, New York to shoot two episodes of a series that will appear on the History Channel, an episode on Area 51, and another on contemporary issues of UFOs and Disclosure. Just as a snow storm hit our part of the state, I began my drive! However, anyone who has lived in the northern climate long enough knows how to deal with all that. I arrived at the shoot in Ithaca and all went well.

Following that, I spent some much overdue time with one of my closest friends: Peter Robbins. This has been the year that so much has gone sideways or backward, and one of many casualties for me at least is that I lost touch with some important people. So it was with Peter, whom I have known for almost twenty years. Life and friendships are unpredictable, but my friendship with him has been one of the great pieces in my life, and we have had many mutual adventures.

For those of you who don’t know, Peter is a longtime UFO researcher who is perhaps best known for his collaboration with (now somewhat infamous) Larry Warren on the excellent work, Left at East Gate, about the Rendlesham Forest UFO encounter of 1980. He’s done a great deal of work in other areas as well, many of which overlap with research of my own (when we met in 2002, we both discovered we had been examining the 1949 death of Defense Secretary James Forrestal). Over time, Peter and I seemed to be together everywhere and we became fast friends.

So while in Ithaca, I took some time out to catch up. Forgive me for being away, but believe me when I tell you how important it was for me.

While away, unfortunately, I have been in regular contact with my sister and stepdad regarding the health of my mother, Barbara. Many of you have been asking about her, and I want all of you to know how much that touches both me and Tracey. We are so grateful and feel so lucky to be surrounded by such caring people.

Well, my mother came down with Covid-19 almost two months ago. She wouldn’t want me to mention her age, but if you realize that I am 58, you can pretty much figure out where she is in the scheme of things. For most of her life, her health was great. Even after she was diagnosed with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia 26 years ago, when she was younger than I am now, she never slowed down. According to the doctor, she wasn’t supposed to make it much past five years. Onward she went!

But the coronavirus really hit her hard. For the past six weeks or more, there were many times when we thought she would not make it. A total roller coaster. My sister Nancy, who is a nurse, has taken amazing care of her, but the process is exhausting. Mom has been going in and out of the hospital, and at some point a few weeks ago came down with pneumonia—not an unusual thing for an elderly person who has been confined to their bed for so long.

At this point, my mother remains in the hospital and is receiving IV of antibiotics and other medications. Her oxygen levels remain low, but the doctors now consider her post-Covid. In other words, they believe the Covid is receding.

The problem remains that she is extremely weak, and the fact is we still don’t know how things will turn out. Her pneumonia is in both of her lungs, and she has had a fever for a very long time. She is now receiving a (low) dose of morphine for pain and to ease the difficulty of her breathing. She is hoping to be home with her husband, Glyn.

I’ve been mainly talking with Nancy, our sister Lisa, and earlier today with Glyn. It’s all heartbreaking, especially Glyn. He loves my mom so much.

It’s hard for me to write about this, but you have all been very patient with me, and I feel we owe you this.

I lost my dad two years ago. That was hard. Often with parents we have conflicting feelings, usually of love but also of anger, resentment, fear, or other less-than-ideal emotions. I will honestly tell you I had this with my dad. He was a man I looked up to my whole life, but in all honestly he had his demons and all-too-often the rest of us were subjected to them.

But in the case of my mother, I can say without reservation that there are no conflicts of anything. She was always entirely positive, loving, and THERE for the family. I have often thought that without her influence I could easily have become a very troubled young man and even gone down a bad road. Because of her, that never happened. I owe her everything, and so do my sisters.

Sometime next week, we are figuring out a way to see her. Meanwhile, I will be back at my desk tomorrow. I have things on my mind regarding UFOs and the world that I want to share with you.

With love and thanks to you all.
Richard & Tracey


This was us a year ago, with my son Michael on the right. 


Here are Peter, Tracey and me during happy times a couple of years ago in Greece.

35 thoughts on “Personal Update

  1. alisonbell

    Much love to you, Richard. This is hard in any respect. I recently lost both of my parents within 6 months of each other. There is no easy road through. I hold you in my heart. I wish the best outcome for you.
    Love and strength, insight and understanding to you.
    May the many hugs of all of us enfold you.


  2. Sonya Johnson

    Take care of your Mom and yourself!!!! We’ll be here when you return. We’re behind you in your time of troubles. You are doing Good work and we appreciate your thoughts!!

  3. Lance Leslie

    Summoning healing and positive energy for your mother and all who surround her, Richard. Thank you for these very personal revelations, and know that your struggles are shared in, and with, love.

  4. Rick

    Thank you for the update Richard. It’s been on my mind, but did not want to press. Prayers and love to your mom. She sounds like a very strong women and that will make a big difference in her recovery. Our family will be praying for yours.

  5. Lynda


    Lynda & Steve

  6. PressToDigitate

    We are so glad to hear that your mother is getting through it. If the COVID has passed, they can probably handle the rest of her recovery; its less “unknown territory” than treating COVID. Although, at this point, they should have the latest therapeutics for that, as well.

    Thank you for “braving the elements” to record the two UFO shows for us for the History Channel. They should be coming to you in Rochester for those interviews. Its not *quite* like you live up in “The Great White North”, in Frederickton, New Brunswick, or something… (but you can probably see it from there…)

    Is there just not not much call for Ufologists in Ft. Lauderdale these days? 🙂

  7. Rosanne Losee

    Hello Rich, I’ve had to take a hiatus for a bit, but am back now. Rough year…as I know for everyone.

    I am sorry to hear about your mother and her struggle. We also had some family members that caught COVID, but recovered. It is shocking that I realize I am now 71 and high risk, so Rick and I are very careful. My three adult children are mostly cautious, but because they are still young (30s and 40s!) they don’t have the same fear as us ‘older’ folks.

    I share your worry; and I send prayer for her recovery, and hope to you and your family. We are all going through difficult times now, but I still have faith that the good people of America will see this through. We must for our children’s sake!

    God bless you and your family; and special wishes and prayers for your Mom.
    PS: Just bought your new book, and ready to dive in. PPS: Handsome son!

  8. JimmyBee

    Bless you and your families, Richard and Tracy. You all remain in my thoughts and prayers. I’ve been thinking about you all.

  9. Greg

    Keeping your mom in our prayers. Glad you continue to get media exposure. Definitely elevates the level of discussion.

  10. Thomas Landry

    I want to thank you for sharing with us your love for your mother and for bringing her into all of our lives. The tears that are flowing into my whiskers right now are not only for her suffering but for you and yours. I’m so sorry to hear this news. I’m old and have found that there is much more bad news when one reaches into their 70’s then good and I guess that’s just the way it is, but I hate it none the less. I cared for my mother many years ago when cancer was eating up the most amazing human being I had ever known. I feel your pain.
    Take care;

  11. WickyBu

    Richard, our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. It sounds like they are taking good care of your mom, and by what you’ve said about her, she stands a good chance of fighting through it!

    All the very best.

  12. Christina

    I’m really sorry to read your mom is struggling so much. Lots of positive vibes and prayers for her 🍀 And poor Glyn, I feel so sorry for him as well. It must be a tough time for all of you, and I hope writing about it, as hard as it is, also helps processing all of it. It sounds really good you could spent some time with Peter, especially at a time like this.
    I don’t think many have a relationship to a parent like you have with your mom… I honestly hope you get many more great years with her 💚

    Many thoughts to you, Tracey and your families

  13. TomTort

    I hope it goes well with your family and things improve. Two members of my family came down with covid19 but are now improving. This thing is a true pain in the butt for far too many people and a nightmare for others. Keep up with the positive attitude!! Thanks for sharing. Your courage helps alot of people!

  14. David LoVecchio

    Family and friends are so important. My thoughts, prayers and hopes for a healthy, happy reunion for your fighter of a mom and Glyn.

  15. Ron Holmes UK

    Still sending all the love I have, and that’s a lot. Stay safe and warm and never hold back when you think you should tell someone how you really feel about them. The right time for that is always now.

  16. Thomas Wells

    I am so sorry to hear this. Like everyone else here, my thoughts and prayer are with you and your family.

  17. Billwilcox44

    Best wishes and prayers to you and your family specially your Mom. I wish you the biggest Christmas present, that beIng the drastic improvement of your mother’s health and I look forward to your continued excellent contributions to the field of ufology.

  18. OwnTheBrink


    The respect and integrity with which you approach the matter of ufos, witnesses, and even lazy skeptics, a term I may even have picked up from you, is exactly what drew me in. With that same unwavering integrity of yours now focused upon ultimate mysteries I’ve only recently become willing to face, I feel honored by your message here and remain grateful for having you in MY life, thank you.

  19. Lauren2844

    Getting older is tough.. my mom is in her early 50’s and her mom just passed.. her dad died a year before that and her brother 6 months before that! When your in your 20’s and everyone around you is young you don’t see death much.. however when you get into your 50’s everyone starts getting older… cancer… heart disease and accidents can take their toll. I always extremely lucky not having anyone close to me die.. I’m only 28 but even now a number of my friends from Fairfield University have come down with serious diseases. Life even if you live to see 100 is Short and life goes quickly.. extremely quickly. However Richard your a wonderful son and your mom is extremely proud of you and your siblings. You can tell in the photos!! Richard I’m so thankful to have known you in this life because its a trip and we need people like you to keep us grounded.

  20. Gaspar74

    Your mom sounds like such a trooper and a very strong woman. I hope she turns the corner soon and starts to get stronger and full of that spunk you talk about her having soon! Merry Christmas to you all. What a year this has been for everyone!

  21. Alex Vachon

    Thank you Richard for sharing your personal sentiments. We’re all in this together. We support you.
    Best wishes to you and your family.

  22. Lewis Rhinewald

    Rich and Tracey my prayers are with you all. Its been a year since we have seen each other in person and I miss you both. Hopefully in the not to distant future we will be able to meet up again. God bless you all.

  23. Scott Santa

    You and Peter are my – “go-to” guys …. Peter and I SKYPE about every other month or so … he is a Dear man and I’m fortunate to call him (and you Richard) friend! I hope to drive over to his home when this COVID shitstorm has abated and delve into his library and perhaps spend a few days visiting!

    Our best to Mom Dolan and the family – as always!

    Much love to all.

  24. chris gaffney

    Thank you so much for the update….
    I lost my mother four years ago around this time so I can appreciate the roller coaster of emotions you guys are going through.
    great too hear that it seems you mother is on the mend and fingers crossed she ll make a full recovery in no time soon.

    we have a saying here in Dublin.. Ya only have one Mammy.
    i bet yours is so proud of you.

    Keep safe
    Chris G

  25. Andromeda107

    Thank you Richard for sharing with us what’s been going on. I can speak from personal experience I had to deal with some horrible events in my life and loss. I can understand where you are coming from and it’s not easy to talk about. But we are all here for you and Tracey , sending my love . Maybe when you are up to it in the future you can interview peter.

  26. ddimatteo

    Just wanted to say my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family . I remember when my mom was in the hospital and the struggle when she passed slowly.. That was a very tough time and that was without the pandemic . The additional fears you must have regarding your family during this time only add on to the anxiety you must be feeling. Just know that we’re thinking and praying for you all…

  27. mcwest50

    My thoughts and best wishes with you and your mum. Your lucky to have your sister taking good
    care of her and you informed. God Bless you and yours

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