March 1, 2016 7:26 pm

During  the early hours of the morning of October 7, 1985 tragedy struck a small, poor village located in the southern region of the island of Puerto Rico.

The weak hill that barely held together the entire village of Mameyes (pronounced “mah-may-yes”) was directly hit by what residents then described as a “thunderbolt.”

An explosion that shook the hill followed the massive ray of light. It made the weak foundation to crumble and collapse in its entirety, burying the villagers alive after a series of torrential rains.

The “ball of thunder and ray” that the residents claimed to have witnessed is said to also have caused “multicolored” fire. The loud sound of the blast was heard in nearby villages, and some witnesses even claimed that a minor earthquake was also felt in the vicinity.

It is believed that hundreds of residents died that night, most of them being children who attended the nearby public schools. However, it was impossible to determine the exact number of deaths because the actual number of villagers was never official.

Two events that unfolded before and after the tragedy made this disaster look anything but “natural.” They were the key reasons why, to this day, this historical event is still fresh in the psyche of the residents of the island.

The strange drawings of the children of Mameyes

It had been weeks after the disaster occurred. A grieving Head Start teacher who survives the events of October 7, tries to collect and put together the last pictures drawn by her students, many of whom died in the tragedy. As she pulls out the drawings, another teacher asks her what lesson she taught on the day that the pictures were drawn.

Unsure of why she is asked the question, she responds that the last lesson she gave before the disaster was about community helpers, as the pictures of the children would show. The students were all asked to pick their favorite helpers and draw them on paper.

The teacher who asks looks puzzled and points out to her colleague 8 particular drawings that were extremely salient from the rest: They were dark, morbid, and depicted what looks like the aftermath of a massive disaster.

The drawings of these 8 children, who seem to have seen the tragedy occur ahead of time, still haunts Puerto Ricans as one of the most hardcore evidences of something tantamount to collective unconscious, supernatural forces, or collective premonition.

The day of the drawings

Three days before the tragic events of Mameyes, on October 4th, 1985, 25 students attending the village’s government-sponsored Head Start program celebrate the birthdays of preschoolers Hobrian and David.

In order to slowly transition the children back into study mode, from having just sang Happy Birthday, the teacher asks all students to draw pictures of community workers, which is the lesson that she had been covering.

The good mood of the birthday occasion, and the natural predilection for drawing so common to school aged children, made it very hard for the psychologists who analyzed the pictures weeks past the aftermath of the disaster to make a correlation as to why these 8 children chose, independently from one another, to draw pictures depicting morbid scenes in nothing but dark-colored crayons.

This was particularly strange given that the torrential rains that accompanied the explosion that hit the hill did not start until the day after the pictures were drawn.

The drawings

Every one of the 8 drawings featured either black crosses, or people laid flat on their backs, giving the impression that they were dead. Each drawing also showed something tantamount to people under what looks like debris, rain and rays of light. One of the children drew a collapsing mountain. Another student drew a house that was positioned upside down, something highly unusual in a pre-school aged child.

David and Hobrian, the two children celebrating their birthday that day, and 2 of the 8 children who drew the strange pictures, were among the victims who died in the collapse.

David’s drawing

David’s drawing was particularly curious.  It was already a rare thing for him not to have followed the teacher’s instructions of drawing a community worker. Still more rare was his choice of drawing a picture of his own house featuring two crosses: One at the top, and one at the bottom.

Interestingly, when David’s house collapsed three days later during the tragic event, the only bodies that could not be found in the debris were those of him and his brother. The currents of water may have carried out the two children in the early hours of October 7.

After the disaster: The French and the NASA

The second strange event occurring as a result of the collapse of Mameyes was the suspicious entrance of a team of forensic experts from France into the scene. This team brought specially trained dogs to detect “substances” that were never identified to the press. This was something unheard of in the history of Puerto Rico. The island is no stranger to natural disasters and has had them for hundreds of years without the need to hire specially trained teams to look for anything.

Still more surprising was the entrance of another group that also went to investigate the area. This time, it was a team of NASA experts that never addressed the press officially, either. According to residents, and to the local news, these experts mixed nonchalantly with the hundreds of FEMA and Red Cross workers assigned to the scene.

Reports stated that the NASA team marked specific areas that the French team’s dogs had identified. The areas were marked in red, white and blue. Red was the only marking that was never identified to the public, while blue and white referred to live or dead bodies found, according to what witnesses stated.

While the presence of these agencies was neither officially confirmed to the local press, nor officially identified to anyone, reporters and witnesses knew and spoke about it publicly, showing the irreverent way in which their presence was “obviously there,” but still kept silent.

Thirty years later

It has been over 30 years since the tragic demise of the entire village of Mameyes after the collapse of the hill that could barely sustain together the wood-and-zinc homes of the poor inhabitants. Still, the lore that arose from the presumed premonitions, and the mysterious visit of NASA and French experts to the location, has kept the history of this small town still fresh in the memories of all Puerto Ricans who lived through the events either directly or indirectly.

Decades later, people who live near the epicenter of the disaster concluded that NASA could have been looking for the debris of a meteor. They claim that the land where the explosion occurred became, and has remained, completely barren and dead since the tragedy. Moreover, the “multicolored” fire reported after the explosion, and the shaking of the ground, may have all been consequences of the same thing.

Unfortunately, this will remain forever unknown. The territorial status of the island entitles federal agencies to conduct whatever type of activity needs to be carried out without the need to consult with the island’s central government, nor giving any information to the press.

As far as the premonitions presumably shown in the strange drawings of the children of Mameyes, the pictures are currently kept safely in the historical archives of the municipality of Ponce, Puerto Rico, where the village was located.

To this day, people have not been able to explain what prompted these 8 students to deviate so much from the rest of their peers in class, or what inspired them to produce these drawings that were clearly illustrating the tragedy that was to destroy their entire world less than 72 hours away.

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This post was written by mpossa