On February 28th, a man was found unconscious in a motel in Palm Springs. His photo identification showed him to be Michael Thomas Boatwright, a veteran who had served from 1971 to 1973 in the U.S. Navy as an aviation mechanic. But when he woke up in the emergency room of the local hospital, he claimed to be someone else:
When Michael Boatwright woke up in the emergency room at Desert Regional Medical Center, the nurses began asking him questions for which it became clear he had no answers. The gray-haired, soft-spoken man looked at his identity card and didn’t recognize his own face. He answered only to Johan Ek.
He walked up to the sink, stared at the reflection of the 61-year-old man facing him in the mirror and said he was going to throw up.
Though his driver’s license said he was born in Florida, he spoke only in Swedish and said he remembered nothing about his life before.
“The guy Michael — it wasn’t me. I’m still Johan,” he said through a translator in a recent hospital interview, twisting his water bottle around in his hands.
Fugue state? Split-personality? Intelligence operator suffering from amnesia? Manchurian candidate? Remembered past life? You decide!