Religion and death

The Waking Dead

Mary Neal came back from the dead


In 1999, the Wyoming doctor technically drowned when her kayak overturned. She was pinned underwater beneath the boat for thirty minutes before being rescued and resuscitated.

There is no medical explanation how she avoided brain damage after being under water for that long.

During the half-hour that she was submerged, Neal said she looked down on her body from above and felt herself travel to a place where she met the spirits of departed family members.


The spirits told her that her son would die at some point in the future.

Ten years later her oldest son Willie was hit by a car and killed at age 20. 

After her journey to the afterlife Mary Neal, now 62, embraced a spiritual life and now refers to herself as a “child of God.”

Her experience is one of the stories that will be explored in a new Netflix documentary ‘Surviving Death’ which premiers on January 6.

Mary Neal’s experience of looking down on her body after flatlining is similar to those of many people who have had near-death experiences.

The documentary is based on a book by journalist Leslie Kean. 

“I do not believe that consciousness is limited to the physical brain,” said Kean. “Could consciousness survive the death of the physical brain? There’s a lot of evidence that it can. We can’t provide hardcore answers, but we can show what it’s like for people to go on this journey.”

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2 thoughts on “The Waking Dead

  1. My Brother died on the operating table and had to be brought back to life. He tells of looking down on his body from the ceiling while they frantically worked to revive him. Do I believe his story? Let’s say I believe he believes that is what happened. As for what really did take place, I guess the rest of us will never know for sure.