The Voice

Sometimes supernatural forces help us.  In this episode, we learn how.   I’m a U.S. Army Private stationed in South Carolina.  I use to hitchhike between my post and my hometown in Jacksonville Florida.  I always got rides easy because I had a gimmick.  I would stand on the side of the road, holding a gas can, next to a gas station.  Based upon the gas can, people assumed that I had run out of gas, purchased some at the station, and was now in need of a ride back to my car.  My situation rarely failed to elicit sympathy. 
In fact, that gas can was empty.  It contained my shaving kit and some underclothing.  When the people who picked me up discovered the truth of my situation, they often complimented me on being clever.   Very few felt that they had been tricked. 

I got one ride that soon proved to be a mistake.  When the driver discovered that I didn’t need a ride to my car, he reacted like the other drivers.  He complimented me on being clever.  He then asked if I was clever enough to earn fifty dollars.  He placed his hand between my legs to signal how he intended for me to earn the money.  Despite the outrage that I demonstrated, some part of me was flattered and gave consideration to his request.  However, I asked him to let me out.  He immediately pulled over without a protest.  I got out of his car.

I was now stranded on the highway and it was getting dark.  However, I felt that my gas can trick would soon convince another driver to pick me up.   I was wrong.  Two hours later, it was a dark night.  At night all drivers are reluctant to pick up hitchhikers.  It was getting cold and it was going to rain soon.  I was losing hope of getting a ride that night.  I couldn’t stay on the road.  So, unless a ride came along soon I would have to look for shelter.  The entire time I had been walking along the highway.  I was hoping to make it to a roadside rest station and hang out in a warm restroom.  

Hours later, I was wet and cold.  I was moving along the edge of the highway with my head down and my thumb out.  I noticed in the distance a van stopped on the side of the road ahead of me.  It had its four-way flashing lights and the interior lights turned on.  It was a life saver.  I enter the van through the side door and sat down on the bench seat behind the driver and the passenger.  
There was only three of us in the van.  The other two guys were just a little older than me.  I thank them for stopping and told them where I was heading.  

We drove for about forty minutes while making small talk.  They were very curious about who I was and why I was hitchhiking.  Then the conversation dropped off and they started talking to each other.  I must have taken a micro nap; because, when I woke up, I notice that we were no longer on the highway.  They apparently had taken a side road at some point.  They assured me it was a shortcut and that we would soon be back on the highway.  I relaxed a little.

The guy in the passenger seat had earlier identified himself as David.  The driver was called Mike.  David asked me if I knew anything about revolvers.  Since I was in the Army, I was familiar with the old .38 military police revolver.  After I said that I was.  He pulls out a .45 caliber Colt Revolver from the glove box and pointed it at me.  He pulled the trigger and the hammer landed on an empty chamber.  Stunned, I asked was he crazy.  I said you don’t play with people like that.  He and Mike just laughed at me.  I got a knot in my stomach.  I know it was going to get much worst. 

I wanted to get out of the van but I had no idea where I was.  David then loaded the gun, filling each chamber, then held it in his lap.   Mike slowed the van and turned on to a dirt road.  I asked where are we going?  They didn’t answer.  David just turned in his seat and looked at me like I was his prey.  We drove for a while on that dirt road through a swampy nighttime landscape.  As Mike stopped the van, David held the gun on me and announced that we were going to play a game.

Mike got out of the van and came around to the side door.  It was the first time that I noticed that the side door could not be opened from the inside.  I was panicked.  Then I heard a voice next to me say, “Don’t fight now wait.”  I thought it was David.  Then I heard it again.  “If you want to live through this do everything I say.”  That voice was right next to my ear.  I was sure that I heard it because David told me to shut up.  I hadn’t spoken.  

Mike opened the side door.  I was told to get out of the van.  Once I was out, Mike who now also had a gun made me walk away from the van.  I was directed to walk off the dirt road and into the swamp.  The water was cold and it stank.  I could feel odd things floating under the surface.  I waded out until it was up to my waist then I was told to stop.  The light from the vans headlight the illuminated area.  I thought that I would next feel them shooting me in the back and head.  I was thinking that I never thought that my life would end this way.  Then I heard the voice say “start swimming.”  At the same time, the area went dark.  The lights on the van turned off and the van’s horn was sounding loud as though it were stuck.  

I swam as fast as I could.  I was expecting to feel the bullets strike me any second.   The voice said to keep swimming.   Then, I heard the men firing their weapons in my direction.  I heard the rounds strike the water but miss me.  In the darkness, they couldn’t see me.   Also, because the van’s horn was sounding, they could not clearly hear my movements.  After a few minutes of swimming, I could feel land under my body.  The voice said, “get out of the water and run.”  I did.  Then I heard the voice say “stop here and lay down.”  It ordered me to be as still as possible.  I could hear David and Mike moving through the woods now.  They were using a very bright flashlight to search for me.

I was breathing hard.  I was sure that they could hear me breathing.  I also had wounds from thorn bushes that were acquired when I was running through the brush.  My exposed skin itched and felt on fire.  My breathing calmed.  I lay still for what seem to be hours but was more likely just under an hour.   I could hear the two men calling for me.  They were saying it was all a prank.  They wanted me to come to them.  They promised that when got out of there and they would take me to Jacksonville.  I heard the voice right against my ear say get up.  It instructed me to move forward with stealth as quietly as possible.  

As I moved, the sounds of the two men became more distant.  The voice guided me through that swamp that night and the early morning.  I walked for a distance in one direction.  Then it instructed me to turn left or right(when necessary) and continue on a different route.  As the sun came up, I found myself at the back of a highway rest station.   The voice said to wait here in the woods.  So, I hid in the woods until I observed a state patrol vehicle stop there, then I was able to get help.  

Over the months since this has happened, I have thought about this situation constantly.  Before that night, I never heard that voice.  It was unfamiliar to me.  I haven’t heard it since that night.  I don’t pretend to know who or what that voice was.  I don’t know why it saved me and I can’t say why I am worth saving.  I am just so grateful that it help me when I needed it most.  Somehow, it turned off those lights on the van and sounded the horn to help me escape those crazy men.  Then it guided me to safety.  Sometimes, I think it was an angel.  Other times, I think it was the ghost of one of their victims because there has to be more than me.  I'm sure that it was more than something inside of me.  David told me to shut up when the voice first whispered in my ear.  He heard it too.   

Of course, I don’t hitchhike anymore.  However, I still believed in the goodness of people.  I just don’t believe that I’m invincible.   I was not able to give the police enough information to capture David and Mike.  They are still out there somewhere on the highway looking for more victims.  I expect to see them everywhere.     

Hi, Hi, Hi

This is a community member story that is in the back catalog called Hi, Hi, Hi.  In the early 1980s, Sam Bowie was a Staff Sargent in the United States Army assigned to a long-range reconnaissance company.  During a field exercise deep inside a Florida Swamp, he had a paranormal encounter that changed his life.

Sam’s Army Ranger Company was conducting a three-day land navigation exercise in the swampy terrain on Eglin Airforce base (in the state of Florida). The countryside that they navigated through was very difficult terrain in which to keep one’s correct location (during daylight hours).  Therefore, it was more difficult, for his small team of five men (called a patrol) to navigate the swampy terrain at night. 

On the second night of the exercise, the men were two hours into the third leg of their movement and they were lost. They located a small island just big enough to hold the team above the water level of the swamp.  Climbing on their hands and knees, out of the water, onto the darkness of the island, they checked the muddy ground for snakes and alligators using the night vision scopes mounted on their assault rifles.  Then they removed their heavy rucksacks and lay down to recover their strength.  Sam pulled out the map and attempted to locate the island on it.  The entire team noticed that a strong smell of urine, feces and decaying flesh inhabited the island. 

Seconds after turning on a flashlight to check out the ground, team members made a gruesome discovery. Discarded partially consumed animal body parts were spread around the small island in various stages of decay.  Some of the parts were fresh and others had long ago been consumed.  There were also numerous piles of fresh feces.  It appeared that the island was the nest of some very large predatory animals.  The team had arrived while the predators were away.

Sam was still attempting to locate their position on the map when they all heard something very large splashing through the water towards the island.  All the red lens flashlights were turned off upon hearing the sounds of movement.  The men used their night vision scopes to scan the swamp in the direction of the sound.  In the green vision of the scope, they could see what appeared to be two enormous “King Kong like” gorillas or bears approaching the island. 

When the patrol had approached the island, the water level had been up to their chest.  Some of the men were six feet in height.  Looking through the night vision scopes, at the two gorillas or bears, the water level was between their waist and knees.  They were very tall for gorillas or bears (about ten to twelve feet in height).

The soldiers believed that they were observing two escaped zoo animals or pets that had been released into the wild.  People did that all the time in Florida. A few Ranger teams had encountered large anaconda snakes on past exercises.  At that point in time, the only place the men had ever seen gorillas was on TV.  They had no realistic idea of correct gorilla proportions.  However, the closer the pair got to the island the less gorilla or bear-like they appeared to be.  A powerful stench assaulted the men’s nostrils.  It was much stronger than the stench of the island.  While still looking through the night vision scope, someone on the team exclaimed in a whisper, “Fuck, those are Big Foots.”

Instinctively, as quietly as possible and while still laying on the ground, the team formed a skirmish line facing the perceived threat.  As they had practiced many times, they moved their backpacks between them and the oncoming creatures to create cover and support for their weapons.  The Big Foots were close enough now to be seen without electronic aids.  The team only had blank ammunition for their M-16 assault rifles.  The weapons were worthless if the Big Foots attacked. 

Sam took the pin-flare gun out of his breast pocket and fired off a round to illuminate the area.  When the Big Foots heard the pop of the pen flare they froze half squatting in the murky water.  The flair illuminated the area like daylight for about forty seconds.  The Big Foots watched the flare arc and then descend to the surface of the water.  The sudden illumination had temporally halted their progress toward the island.  It had also temporally destroyed the team’s night vision.  It must have also destroyed the night vision of the creatures because they didn’t move long after the flair had landed.

Not knowing what to expect from the Big Foots and fearing the worst. Sam chose to retreat.  He shouted “Westport” the code word for the team to move to the last designated rally point.  In this case, the team would move due west until they encountered the first dirt road.  Sargent Morales, the assistant team leader, pulled out his compass and took up a heading of 270 degrees magnetic.  He plunged into the swamp water on the other side of the small island.  The team followed him one by one into the water.  Sam, as team leader, brought up the rear.  He needed to ensure that no men or equipment was left behind.

The men moved through cool chest-high water for hours toward the dirt road.  On the movement to the road, several times they halted and just listen.  They could hear the creatures moving behind them and talking to each other.  When the creatures realized that the patrol had stopped moving, they would also stop.  However, then they made sounds like they were calling out to the patrol.  It sounded like one of them was saying Hi! Hi! Hi!  

Sam thought that they would attack at any moment.  The creatures could have easily caught the team if they wanted.  After a while, he was sure that they were just curious.  Upon reaching the dirt road the team set up a defensive perimeter and took out their field knives for protection. They used the radio to call for an extraction.  While they waited the team could still hear the sounds of one of the creature’s shouting to them Hi! Hi! Hi!

Hours later, a helicopter landed on the road to extract them.  As the helicopter circled around in the air to take up its course.  The men could see the two Big Foot creatures through the trees below.  They were looking skyward at the helicopter and using their hands to shield their vision from the sun.  For a few minutes, the helicopter crew and the team circled the area looking at the creatures in disbelief.  Then the big foots moved into a denser part of the swamp and disappeared.

In the operations debrief, the men were separated.  However, each man still managed to relate with accuracy the story of their encounter with the Big Foot creatures.  The report was stamped confidential by the commander.  For weeks after the incident, each time someone on the other Ranger Teams made a mistake, they would claim to have been chased by Big Foot.  They turned the whole story into a joke.  No one on the team wanted to talk about it after that.

Three months later, on another field exercise to Eglin, a different team of Rangers encountered the island that Sam’s team had discovered that night.  This time it was during daylight hours.  The team discovered classic Bigfoot footprints all over the muddy island.  They took photographs of the prints.  The photos hung in the company’s offices for years.  The area was closed off from access by the military police and the federal game wardens.  There are rumors that some large bears were captured by the wardens and released elsewhere.  After a few days, the area was open again.

Two years later, Sam wrote a fictionalized article for “Boy’s Life Magazine” about his team’s encounter with the Bigfoot creatures.  After much reflection, he had become obsessed with the idea that the Bigfoots were attempting to communicate with the team that night.  He thought that the (Hi! Hi! Hi!) sounds the team heard the Big Foots make was actually English.  Could it be possible they were saying Hi?  Watching the TV show Star Trek had convinced Sam that he had blown a first contact opportunity.  The theme of his article was how fear had destroyed an opportunity to explore and learn.  If given a second chance, he promised himself he would use it to expand his knowledge.

After Sam retired from the Army, he searched for Bigfoot creatures around North America.  He disappeared one weekend in the Cascade Mountains of Washington State.  The Park Rangers located his campsite.  There were Big Foot feet prints all over the ground.  There was also a tripod with a camera mounted on top.  Most of the people who have seen the images developed from that camera believe it’s all staged.  They think that Sam is somewhere having a joke on everyone.  However, the men who were on his old Ranger Team looked at the photos and said, “That son of a bitch made contact!” They suspect Sam will turn up one day to tell us what his life was like living with Big Foot.

Christmas Ghost Stories and Mysteries

Did They Go Up in Smoke?

This is about a tragic Christmas mystery that remains unsolved after more than seventy-three years.   It is about the five young Sodder children who disappeared on Christmas Eve 1945.  Their names and ages are Maurice, 14; Martha 12; Louis, 9; Jennie, 8; Betty, 5.  In the small town of Fayetteville, West Virginia no one could agree on whether those children were dead or alive.  The only known facts are these on the night of Christmas Eve 1945, George and Jennie Sodder and nine of their children went to sleep at one a.m.  A fire broke out later that morning.  George, Jennie and four of their children escaped and five of the children were never seen again.

It is known that George had tried to save the children by breaking a window to re-enter the house.  He reported that he could not see anything in the house because of the smoke from the fire that swept through all of the downstairs rooms.  He figured Maurice, Martha, Louis, Jennie, and Betty.  Were trapped and hiding upstairs in their rooms and likely overcome with fear.  He went back outside, hoping to reach them through the upstairs windows, but the ladder he usually kept propped against the house was missing. 

The family had called for the fire department.  However, they were a volunteer unit.  Due to notification problems, the crew didn’t arrive until 8 a.m.  The house had long ago burned down.  A search of the grounds turned up no trace of human remains. Fire Chief Morris suggested that the blaze had been hot enough to completely cremate the bodies. A state police inspector combed the rubble and attributed the fire to faulty wiring. The coroner’s office issued five death certificates attributing the cause of death to “fire or suffocation.  Still, George and Jennie Sodder wondered if their children were alive.  

The family planted flowers across the space where their house had stood.  Then they began to stitch together a series of odd moments leading up to the fire.  A few months earlier, a stranger appeared at their home asking about hauling work.  At the back of the house, he pointed to two separate fuse boxes, and said, “This will cause a fire someday.” George thought that was strange because he had just had the wiring checked by the local power company.  They said it was in fine condition. 

Sometime later, another man tried to sell the family some life insurance.  He became irate when George declined.   He swore and threaten that their house would go up in smoke and that the children would be destroyed.  He was a supporter of Mussolini.  George, an Italian immigrant, was an outspoken opponent of Mussolini.  He occasionally got into heated arguments with other members of Fayetteville’s Italian community who supported the dictator.  The older Sodder sons also recalled, that just before Christmas, they noticed a man parked along U.S. Highway 21, watching the younger kids when they came home from school. 

On Christmas morning, at 12:30, the phone ring. Everyone was asleep.  Jennie answered it.  It was a wrong number but she heard people laughing and glasses clinking in the background.  Before she returned to bed she noticed that the downstairs lights were still on and the curtains were open.  She also discovered that the front door was unlocked.  She saw her child, Marion asleep on the sofa in the living room.  She assumed the other kids were upstairs in bed. She turned off the lights, closed the curtains and locked the front door before she returned to her room. She recalls having just dozed off when she heard a sharp, loud bang on the roof.  Then she heard a rolling noise.  About an hour later, she was awoken again by heavy smoke leaking into her room.

She just couldn’t understand how her five children could perish in a fire and leave no remains.  She conducted experiments, burning animal bones, chicken bones, beef joints, and pork bones.  She wanted to see how a fire would consume them. She was left with charred bones. The remains of various household appliances had been found in the burned-out basement.  They were still identifiable. An employee, who worked at a crematorium, informed her that bones remain after bodies are burned for two hours at 2,000 degrees. Their house was destroyed in 45 minutes.

The oddities continued to flow.  A telephone repairman told the family that their lines had been cut, not burned. That made them realized, if the fire had been the result of faulty wiring, then the power would have been off.  The lights would not have been on downstairs.  One day, while the family was visiting the site, Sylvia found a hard rubber object in the yard. Jennie recalled hearing the hard thud on the roof, the rolling sound. George concluded it was a napalm “pineapple hand grenade” of the type used in warfare.

Next came reports of the children being sighted.  A local woman claimed to have seen the children in a passing car while the fire was in progress. Another woman who operated a tourist stop between Fayetteville and Charleston said she had seen the children the morning after the fire. She told police that she, served them breakfast. She also said that the car they came in had Florida license plates. A woman at a hotel, in Charleston, saw the children’s photos in a newspaper and claimed that she had seen four of the five children a week after the fire.  She said that the children were accompanied by two women and two men of Italian extraction.  However, she didn’t remember the date.

The entire party registered at the hotel and stayed in a large room.  They registered about midnight. She claims that she tried to talk to the children; but, the men appeared hostile and refused to allow her to talk to them.  She said that one of the men looked at her in a hostile manner.  Then he turned around and began talking in Italian to the group.  Then the whole party stopped talking to her.  She got the sensed that they were warned to say nothing more. The group departed early the next morning.

In 1947, J. Edgar Hoover declined to have the FBI investigate the case after receiving a request from the family.  In his letter, he said, “Although we would like to be of service, the matter appears to be local.  It does not fall within the investigative jurisdiction of this bureau. However, he said that they would assist if they could get permission from the local authorities.  The Fayetteville police and fire departments declined the offer.

The Sodders hired a private investigator named C.C. Tinsley.  He discovered that the insurance salesman who had threatened George was a member of the coroner’s jury that deemed the fire accidental. He also learned from a Fayetteville minister that F.J. Morris, the fire chief, had discovered a heart in the ashes.  He hid it inside of a dynamite box and buried it at the scene.

Tinsley persuaded Morris to show them the spot. They dug up the box and took it to a local funeral director, who concluded it was beef liver and untouched by the fire. Later, the Sodders learned that the fire chief had told others that the contents of the box had not been found in the fire.  He had buried the beef liver in the rubble in the hope that finding any remains would placate the family.

Over the next few years, the tips and leads continued. George saw a newspaper photo of schoolchildren in New York City and was convinced that one of them was his daughter Betty. He drove to Manhattan, but her parents refused to speak to him. 

In August 1949, the family brought in a pathologist. The pathologist conducted a full and thorough excavation of the site.  He uncovered several shards of vertebrae.  He sent the bones to the Smithsonian Institution.  They said that the vertebrae showed no evidence that they had been exposed to fire and thought that it is very strange that no other bones were found at the site.  Since the house burned for about half an hour they should have found the full skeletons of the five children.  They concluded the vertebrae that was found had most likely originated in the supply of dirt used to fill in the basement.

The report caused two hearings at the Capitol in Charleston.  The result was the official closure of the case by government agencies.  It was then that George and Jennie erected a billboard along Route 16 and passed out flyers offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the recovery of their children. Later they increased that amount to $10,000. 

Tips continued to come in from around the country.  A woman in St. Louis said the oldest girl, Martha, was in a convent there.  A person in Texas overheard an incriminating conversation about a Christmas Eve fire in West Virginia. Someone in Florida claimed the children were staying with a distant relative of Jennie’s. George checked out each claim and always returned home disappointed. 

In 1968, Jennie found an envelope in the mail addressed only to her. The postmarked was from Kentucky but it had no return address. Inside the envelope, she found a photo of a man in his mid-20s. On its flip side of the photo, a handwritten note read: “Louis Sodder.  Physically, he resembled their Louis.  They hired a private detective and sent him to Kentucky.  However, they never heard from him again.  The family feared that if they published the letter or the name of the town on the postmark they might cause Louis harm. Instead, they updated the billboard with the new picture and hung an enlarged copy over the fireplace. 

George died in 1968 and Jennie died in 1989.  Upon Jennie’s death, the billboard was taken down.  The family continues to investigate.  

Since the children remains were not found.  I don’t believe that they died in the fire.  It’s possible that they were kidnapped and the fire was set to cover that crime.  What do you believe? Let me know at  I’ll read your feedback in an upcoming episode.  

Community Christmas Ghost Experiences

The First Sleep Over

When we first begin dating, Christmas Eve was the first night I slept over at my boyfriend’s (now husband) apartment.  At that time, he had two roommates and they all shared a single bathroom in the hallway.  I woke up early that morning around three thirty because I needed to pee.  I was still very sleepy but I took my phone with me to check messages and the news.  I’m always working (even on holidays).  When I was walking down the hallway, reading my messages, I was startled by an attractive young woman, in a short white nightgown that I didn’t know.  She was coming from the kitchen.  I was thinking that she must have been with one of his roommates.  So, I said hello to her and continued to the bathroom.  She didn’t say anything and behaved like she didn’t see or hear me.  I was offended but I was really too sleepy to care about some stranger.  I also remember feeling a chill as she passed me. 

Later that morning everybody is up and I am making breakfast for the boys.  So, I teasingly ask the other roommates where the woman was.  They were puzzled.  I told them that I had encountered her in the hallway earlier that morning.  Thinking she was just a hookup, I said that it was nothing to be ashamed of if she decided to leave.  My boyfriend said, oh my god!  He asked me to describe her.  I told him that she was a young white girl, with blonde shoulder length hair, wearing a short white gown?  I also added that she was very rude.  She wouldn’t speak to me.  He blurted out astonished to his roommates.  Oh my god, she saw her!  One of the roommates said no way!  You guys are making this up!  No, he said, I didn’t tell her anything.  She saw her! 

I was irritated and wanted to know what was going on.  The silent roommate told me this story.  When they moved into this apartment eight months ago the landlord claimed that the place was haunted.  However, she thought that they would be ok since they were all men.  Still, she said that everyone who lived in that unit reported that items such as car keys, eyeglasses, and documents would go missing and be found later in unlikely places.  The roommates had all experienced that.  She said that movement could be sensed out of the corner of the eye and strange sounds would be heard.  They had all experienced that also.  Finally, she told them some women could see a young woman dressed in a white nightgown moving through the rooms.  They thought that everything up to that point had just been a coincidence.  They really didn’t believe in ghosts.  Then I, who had never heard about the ghost, described her accurately.  I was the first woman that they knew who had actually seen her.  After that Christmas, I didn’t go over there again. 

Mabey It Was Jam-me

My sister had an imaginary friend named Jimmy when she was three.  Because she was still learning how to speak the name sounded more like Jam-me.   One Christmas Eve, well past her bedtime, my sister was making a lot of noise in her bedroom.  We all believed it was just her excitement over Christmas morning being so close.   When my dad checked on her she said that Jammie was tickling her feet and keeping her up.  My dad is clever. From the living room, we heard him tell Jimmy that Kim had to sleep and that he had to go home.  It was less than thirty seconds later, everyone in the Livingroom watched as our front door open and closed by itself.  My mom went to the door and looked outside.  I looked out of the front windows.  In the blinking Christmas lights, we didn’t see anybody.  We still wonder how that happened. 

The Christmas Travelers

My great grandfather lived to be one hundred and one years old.  He told us kids about a strange thing that occurred on a Christmas Eve when he was a small child living with his family in a very rural area of Newfoundland.  There was a very bad snow storm.  It was much worse than anyone could remember.  Some strangers, who had been traveling on foot, stopped for the night at their house when the snowfall and drifts made continuing their journey impossible.  We all wondered how they had been able to walk that far with so much snow.  His dad offered to take them to the nearest town if the weather allowed the next morning and offered them lodging for the night.

In those days it was not unusual for strangers to stop at a farmhouse and ask for lodging.  Hotels and motels in that area were rare and far between.   These travelers, a man, and a woman were very nice people and they were great storytellers.  All in all, the company and the food made that Christmas Eve enjoyable.  On Christmas morning when we awoke.  The couple was gone.  On the table were gold coins and a note that thanked us for our good company.   It was more money than his parents had ever seen.  His parents used that money to acquire more farmland and modern farm equipment.  It became the foundation of the family's wealth.  

Another strange thing about that couple is that the wooden braces on the doors were still in place when we got up that morning.  They had to be moved to open the doors.  So, we wondered how the couple had gotten out of the house without moving the door brace.  We didn’t believe that they had climbed out of the windows; because, the windows were frozen in place.  The falling snow would have covered any footprint outside and we didn’t find any.  The snowstorm continued for a few days.  Even after it stopped nobody could move without snowshoes or a sleigh.  Yet this couple walking, on foot, had somehow continued on their journey.

Ouija Board for Christmas

In 1995, I got a Ouija Board from my aunt for my Christmas gift.  I suspected that she got it for me just because it was heavily discounted from the original price.  My aunt loves bargains.  I really wasn’t too happy with the gift because everyone in my family, except me, believes the afterlife is made up.   I think it is real and I didn’t want to upset the spirits.  We played with the board later on Christmas day.  We were asking questions and getting answers; but, my Aunt thought that it was me moving the planchette.  I kept telling her it was the spirits.  She then asked for the spirits to prove they exist.  Suddenly, her back begins to feel like it was burning.   My mom lifted her blouse to see what the problem was.  On my aunts back, she found the outline of a large handprint.   It looked like someone had slapped her hard on the exposed skin of her back and left her with a sunburn.  When my little sister saw the handprint on my aunt's back, she said, we’re not alone in this house.

The Things Kids Say

I was watching my nephew for my sister for a few hours.  She and my wife had gone shopping for the ingredients of our Christmas meal.  We were expecting our parents and in-laws to join us for a Christmas day meal.   My nephew said out of nowhere.  Papa (my dad) is not coming.  He fell down and went to sleep.  I thought that was strange.   So, I said he can wake up and come to dinner.  My nephew said no, he wants too but he can’t wake up.  It was minutes later that my mother called us and said my father had a heart attack and had passed away.  The medics were taking him to the morgue as she called me.  That was a horrible Christmas and new year’s.  My nephew grew up and became a professional poker player. If I said his name, you would know him. 

The In-Laws House

On Christmas, years ago, we were going to have dinner at my in-law's house.  I was helping with the cooking because there were a lot of people coming.  I had prepared a large ham and made the dressing.  Early in the morning, I took the ham and other items that I had prepared for my in-law's to their house.   My brother in law open the back door for me and help me carry the items into the house.  From the back door, there was a hallway to the kitchen.  In the middle of the hallway, there was a small powder room.  As I passed the bathroom door, I felt an overpowering energy move through me.  Suddenly, I was walking behind a very large man that I had never seen before.  Then he turned left and entered the den.  I looked back to my brother-in-law and asked who was that.  With an unusual look of fear on his face, he said 'I don't want to talk about it!'  He then just turned around and went upstairs.  I put the items down in the kitchen and went to look into the den.  No one was there but I still felt something overpowering.  I went upstairs and talked with my mother-in-law.  She smiled and said. Baby girl, that’s my first husband Ray.  He's been haunting my house for years.  Don’t let him bother you.  He's not coming to dinner.