Rosemarie Pilkington has been interested in psychic phenomena since childhood when she heard family stories of unexplained visions and happenings. As a young adult she immersed herself in articles, books, and journals on the subject and attended seminars and lectures sponsored by the American Society for Psychical Research (ASPR).
When she was 14 she met Jan (Yancy) Gericke who became her piano instructor, mentor, and “spiritual mother.” Yancy, a very vital, unique person had had many psychic experiences but was rather frightened of them. One incident she related concerned a friend who was a member of the ASPR and was genuinely interested in experimenting with psychic phenomena. He persuaded Yancy to sit with him in a darkened room, their fingers touching a small table. After sitting in silence for a time they were startled by a loud BANG that sounded and felt as thought someone had hit the table hard from underneath. Yancy exited the room quickly and refused to sit again.
Pilkington’s interest had to be set aside while she was busy obtaining a BA in Music, a MS in Education, teaching school, giving music lessons, and raising a daughter, Elanor, from her first young short-lived marriage.
She was fortunate enough to have studied voice with Daniel Ferro and was involved in opera production on Staten Island, where she still lives, in the 1970s. She was audition and rehearsal pianist, assistant to conductor Vincent La Selva, and choral director. She also performed on stage as a chorus member and soloist singing Frasquita to Olivia Stapp’s Carmen and Musetta to Catherine Malfitano’s Mimi in “La Boheme.”
Her second husband, a fellow teacher, was psychically and psychokinetically gifted and she learned a great deal about the practical functioning of a psychic’s mind from living with him. She also had many of her own psychic dreams and visions during this time. In helping him to do research for a doctorate, she contacted and became acquainted with many of the world’s leading parapsychologists, many of whom encouraged her to get her own doctoral degree in psychology.
Under the mentorship of world-renowned psychologist and parapsychologist Stanley Krippner she earned a Ph.D. in Psychology (Consciousness Studies) from Saybrook Graduate Institute doing her dissertation on children’s ESP. She presented the results of her experiment to the Parapsychology Association of which she is an associate member.
Pilkington wrote reviews of books on psychic phenomena and healing for FATE magazine, The Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research and other periodicals. She was a consulting editor for the newsletter “Mind and Medicine” and taught adult education classes on Psychic Phenomena and Alternative Healing Methods. In her first book Men and Women of Parapsychology: Personal Reflections (now out of print but available on the Web) she compiled and edited the anthology Men and Women of Parapsychology: Personal Reflections, ( 1987). It consists of essays and interviews from leading parapsychologists eliciting why they had entered the field, what they felt was important, and so on. The book was favorably reviewed and subsequently spawned several imitations by others. It has been reissued as Esprit: Men and Women of Parapsychology, Personal Reflections, Volume 1 (2010) Anomalist Books. Her follow-up, Men and Women of Parapsychology, Personal Reflections, Esprit, Volume 2 was published in 2013. Both books received praise and are considered important additions to the parapsychological literature.
Rosemarie Pilkington describes herself as an “imparter,” someone who shares her talent and knowledge with others. She has done this most of her life, as a performer, as a teacher of children and adults, as a writer, and as a mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother.
Her daughter, Elanor, passed away in 2006 after a long illness. She has two grandchildren, Amanda, who is the mother of Jordan; and Jeremy, who has two children, Christopher and Megan.