Anyone who has done paranormal research knows that investigations are typically hours of boredom intermingled with a few minutes of excitement. Most of the excitement is due to prosaic reasons: a breeze or creaky floorboards… but some of the time it is not.
Those unusual incidents are the ones that keep investigators going. I have experienced some incredible things on investigations and have been with others who have. When it happens, it definitely changes your perspective on life in a hurry.
My new science fiction novel, The Tesla Gate [Open Road Media, $16.99], deals with what might happen if ghosts were suddenly among us in huge numbers. And I had no shortage of creepy experiences to draw on. These are the scariest moments of my career.
#1: A Father’s Voice
Of my personal experiences, I will save the best for last. I will start with EVPs, which are Electronic Voice Phenomenons. These are recordings that collect ambient noise in the room during an investigation, or they can be interactive: the investigators will ask questions to an alleged entity. Usually nothing out of the ordinary is sensed by those present during the recording session. But when the recording is played back and analyzed, well, it can make your hair stand on end.
I have recorded several incredible examples over the years, but there are three that really stick out. First, we did an investigation at a home where an old man had died of lung cancer just months earlier; the house still reeked of cigarettes and death. One of the investigators asked if he was mad and wanted us to leave. The response we picked up on the recording was a very angry and raspy, “Yes.” The homeowner, who was the deceased man’s daughter, broke down in tears when she heard the recording and identified it as her father’s voice.
#2: The Jovial Ghost
In 2010 we investigated a 120-year-old home that now houses a museum. The original owner of the home died in the 1930s. He was well known in the community and famous for his jovial and boisterous laughter. During an EVP session, someone asked if he liked to laugh. On the recording we picked up a loud belly laugh from a man. I was the only male present in the house at the time.
#3: Still Singing
Probably the most incredible EVP recording I’ve heard occurred at a tuberculosis sanatorium. There is a particular hallway where people have had experiences with a little girl. Hospital records from the abandoned sanatorium are sketchy at best, but it is believed that a little girl and her mother died there sometime in the 1940s. We had just finished an EVP session and were packing up our equipment to move to another section. I left my recorder running on a wooden platform as we packed away cameras and other equipment. When I went back and listened to my recorder the next day, my jaw practically dropped to the floor. As we were quietly talking amongst ourselves about the equipment, a little girl can clearly be heard singing, the volume going up and down as if she were moving around. Finally, just a few seconds before I shut down my recorder to move on, she can be heard a short distance down the hall in a sing-song voice saying, “I’m down in this room.”
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