Showing posts with label first person account. Show all posts
Showing posts with label first person account. Show all posts

Monday, October 31, 2016

An Unusual 911 Call

This is from a first-person account.

I used to work as a 911 operator in a large urban area. One night shift I worked, at around 3:00 a.m., I answered a call from an elderly woman.

She told me she didn’t feel well. I tried several times to illicit more information from her. Was she having chest pains, trouble breathing etc.?

The only response I got was her stating over and over again she was not feeling well. She did give her address and phone number. She also volunteered that she was alone and her front door was unlocked. 

She said when the paramedics arrived they should walk right in.

I put the call out as a “general illness” and continued to talk to her. After several minutes she told me in a weak voice, “ I don’t feel well.” She then stated, “She needed to go to the bathroom.”

I tried to encourage her to stay on the line but I heard her put the phone down. Every few minutes I called her name but received no response.

Eventually a firefighter whom had been dispatched to the callers’ home came on the line. He asked if the call had come in from a third party or family member. I replied “no.”

He sounded puzzled as he told me they had found an elderly lady in the bathroom. I told him that was the lady who had made the call. He slowly stated “no” and then informed me that the lady in the bathroom had been dead for at least 12 hours. That rigor had set in.

Afterwards my supervisor and I pulled the tapes on this call to see if I had missed something. We checked the timestamp, address and phone number. No one else was in the home.

My only explanation is I took a call from a dead woman.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

1st Person Account: The Sad Classroom

I was the first female custodian to be hired at the city’s oldest elementary school in the late 1970s. The original part of the school had been built in 1893.

The building was very large with 3 stories. My job was to clean all the classrooms, take out the trash and make sure the doors were secure.

I was to work the night shift alone and the first day I reported to work I was warned that I should avoid cleaning the ground floor after dark. This floor made up the original school.

No explanation was given as to why I was told this.

For the first few months I went out of my way to make sure I cleaned this floor first but I found I preferred to start at the top floor and work my way down.

I enjoyed working in the quiet old school building. Like most old structures this one creaked and groaned as it settled but I actually took comfort from these sounds.

The ground floor of the school retained an old world charm. Several of the classrooms still had the mosaic designed floors and the fireplaces that once had been their only source of heat.

Each of these ground floor classrooms had windows that were below ground so each window had what is a called a window well around them.

One winter night I was in the largest of these original classrooms. I had gotten a strong sense of sadness in this room each time I entered it.

This night I placed a chair in the doorway of this classroom so I could dust the ledge above the door. I turned to find a dust cloth and when I turned back the chair was no longer in the doorway but sat several feet away.

I thought it was odd but I shrugged it off and moved the chair back to the doorway and started to dust the wood. I stopped when I heard the sounds of small children crying and then I heard banging on the windows.

Frightened, I got off the chair and my first thought was to leave the room but when the sounds continued I approached the windows thinking someone must be hiding in one of the window wells.

As I drew near these sounds all stopped.

For the next several months when I cleaned this room, I continued to hear the crying and banging on the windows. At one point I called the police but they did not find any sign of intruders.

I did not talk about what I was experiencing with other school employees but I now firmly believed the school must be haunted. I dealt with my frayed nerves by simply ignoring the strange activity.

The first summer I worked at the school my schedule was switched to days. One hot afternoon as I weeded the yard two older women who lived across the street from the school approached me and offered me a glass of lemonade.

As I drank the cold drink I found out the two women were sisters and both widows, they had moved back into their family home. The older sister mentioned that the school had certainly changed since they had attended it.

Thinking of the noises I had heard, I asked them if they knew of anything bad ever happening at the school. They both eagerly nodded their heads “yes.”

The older one who seemed to do all the talking told me that their family had lived across from the school for several generations. Their grandfather had attended the school in the late 1800s.

Our grandfather told us that one day one teacher left her classroom for a dalliance with a male teacher. To ensure none of her students left the classroom she wedged a chair under the classroom doorknob.

While she was gone an ember from the fireplace set the classroom on fire. Her young students trapped, all perished in the fire. The younger sister jumped in at this point.

“They say the windows in the room afterwards had to be replaced. The youngsters had beaten on them so hard that they were stained with blood. This blood wouldn’t wash off.”

A chill ran down my back as I asked what happened to the teacher. The older sister told me that she was never seen again. Again the younger sister interrupted.

“Have you seen them? The children I mean. Have you heard them?”

Just then the head custodian hollered that I needed to get back to work. Lost in my thoughts, I remembered to thank the sisters for the lemonade as they crossed the street.

Fall came and once more I was working the night shift. I could never keep a chair in the doorway of the sad classroom very long and knowing what I now knew I never closed the door.

The sounds of the crying and banging started up once more. I decided to try and talk to these young ghosts. I told them that their parents were waiting for them and they should go.

This seemed to help because after this I heard fewer voices crying.

Then one night as I was working on the 2nd floor I was saved from an injury or even death. As I approached one classroom I heard a strange squeaking above my head. I looked up but saw nothing.

As I stepped over the threshold I heard a child’s voice yell, “No.” Then something shoved me backward with such force I fell on my bottom. It was then a loud crashing noise came from the classroom.

The heavy overhead lights had fallen to the ground. Plaster from the ceiling covered the desks and floor. I started to shake realizing what a close call I had. I was grateful school was not in session.

As I sat on the ground I felt two little arms encircle my waist giving me a hug. I whispered, “thank you” and then ran to a phone to report the damage.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Maine: An Imaginary Friend or a Ghost?

I wrote a post about how ghosts sometimes appear as imaginary friends to young children here. 

Four years ago I read about a teenage girl named Jamie who had an imaginary friend when she was a young child while living in a small town in Maine. 

To this day she wonders if her imaginary friend when she was eight years old was actually a spirit. She and her mom lived in a rural area of Maine called Old Town. She spend a lot of time at her grandmother’s house on the edge of this town because her mother, a widow had to work.

Jamie mentions that it is her mother that likes to tell the story for she barely remembers her “imaginary playmate”. She does remember that she loved to play in a cemetery that was just a half-mile down a side dirt road from her Grandmother’s home. She would ride her bike and take fresh picked flowers to place on her father’s grave for he was buried there. 

She remembered that she often sat on a an tree stump and made up stories about the people in this old cemetery. She also played a game to see if she could memorize all the names of the people who lay beneath the slanted tombstones. Most of these stones were marked from the 1830’s to the early 1900s.

She mentioned she no longer remembered these names but that she does vaguely remember an Anglo boy named Tom who was about ten years old that she played with on the dirt road and in the cemetery. She remembered asking him why he wore the same clothes every time she saw him--jeans and a button down shirt. She also remembers he had curly brown hair. 

Her mother hearing about this “Tom” she played with concluded he must be an imaginary friend for there wasn’t a young boy named Tom, or any children in the rural area where her mother lived.

Often when she would pick up Jamie after work she would listen to stories about her day. When Jamie mentioned Tom she would just play along and ask her questions.

One day when Jamie mentioned how much fun it was to play with Tom she asked Jamie where Tom lived. Jamie replied, “Oh he lives in the graveyard”. Thinking her daughter didn’t understand her question she tried again. “You mean you play with him in the graveyard?” To her surprise Jamie told her, “We always play in the graveyard because that is where Tom lives”.

Her mother now wondering about the oddness of her daughter’s response encouraged her not to go the graveyard so often. Jamie remembers she ignored her mother’s request and continued to play with Tom for another year. She continued to talk about him but her mother found it creepy so she stopped. 

As a young teen she couldn’t find the name of anyone named Tom in this cemetery that has around 70 tombstones but later she discovered that in Old Town there is a record of a boy named Thomas who died and was buried on July 18, 1882.