Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Hurricane’s Grey Man, Part ll

So is the Grey Man just a whimsical legend? Does he actually appear to warn of impending hurricanes?

The residents of Pawley’s Island off the coast of South Carolina would firmly state he does exist. Shortly before each hurricane that has hit this island, in the last 200 years, at least one resident has seen this harbinger ghost.

Here are just a few of these eyewitness accounts.

In anticipation of an impending hurricane, one tenet farmer was herding animals when he encountered the Grey Ghost in October of 1893.

He spoke to the figure not realizing he was a ghost. “Hey mister you better follow me off the island, there is a storm brewing tonight.” When he received no response he continued, “I say follow me off the island there’s going to be a storm tonight.”

When he still received no reply he shouted at the man, “Are you crazy man, do what you want.”

When the next day’s hurricane blew right past his home and the plantation owners’ home without touching them, he realized that it was the Grey Man he had spoken to.

Genevieve Peterkin, a long-time resident of Georgetown County, states those who see the Grey Man before a hurricane are protected as well as their property.

She has heard many stories over the years. She states they are always reported in the local newspaper. Her favorite story happened in 1954.

A neighbor of hers in Georgetown owned a summer home on Pawley’s Island. He saw the Grey Ghost just before Hurricane Hazel blew in.

Pawley Island beach.
His home was so protected, that beach towels left hanging on his porch railing, were still there after the storm. Most of the properties around his were completely destroyed.

Peterkin states, she would not have believed this if she hadn’t seen it with her own eyes. She feels people who see the Grey Man are truly blessed.

At midnight on September 22, 1989, Hurricane Hugo after laying waste to the Caribbean slammed into the coast of South Carolina.

Its winds hit speeds of 135 mph. Thousands were forced to flee their homes. In South Carolina alone there was over 5 Billion dollars in damage.

Over 9,000 homes were destroyed. Practically every structure on Pawley’s Island was demolished.

Jim Moore, a resident of the island recounts that Pawley looked like a giant dump pile. Chairs, coaches and iceboxes were piled up in the middle of roads.

Even though Moore’s entire neighborhood was destroyed his home was virtually untouched. His wife Clara, “was happy to find everything just as she had left it.”

Several weeks after Hugo hit, residents of the island started to wonder what had happened to the Grey Man.

Jim and Clara read a headline in their local paper announcing, "The Grey Man Failed To Appear.”

This jarred their memory. Two days before Hugo struck, the couple had a strange encounter.

The Moore’s habit was to take a walk along the beach every afternoon. During their walk two days before Hugo struck, they only saw one other person on the beach.

Jim waved and then greeted this stranger but as he did so this man who had been walking toward them just vanished.

Clara taken aback questioned Jim. “Where did he go?” At the time Jim had no response. He could not explain the fact that the man was there one minute and then the next he was gone.

After reading the headline it dawned on the Moore’s why their home had been spared--the man who had disappeared right in front of them was the Grey Man.

Here is an article by the Coastal Observera newspaper on the island, about the Grey Man.

In Part l of Hurricane’s Grey Man, one story about the origin of the Grey Man is shared.

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