I can say that I have been afraid and not feel the least bit ashamed about it because it’s not the feelings you have but the way you choose to react to them. I have never said or thought that is was not okay to be afraid while on an investigation. I only ask my members to try their best to keep their cool in any situation. If you get frightened and run out of a place it not only looks unprofessional in front of a client, it completely ends whatever experience you may have been having. When you are out there trying to have a paranormal experience the last thing you want is to miss something because you tucked your tail and ran.
I have had my share of personal experiences and have lived to tell the tale. I have never been physically harmed, but I would not be surprised if something out there has tried to do me harm. I believe that each of us have the ability to take control of any situation that may present itself even if we are not yet aware of our own potential. Now I would like to tell you about some of things that have happened to me.
Why don't we start off with a relatively benign experience that happens to myself and probably to most investigators all of the time. I will use an occurrence at Crossroads Automotive. On the second night of our two night live investigation I was standing in the rear shop room that is at the back of the main floor. The room is used as another shop room to work on cars that they are selling. On this night there were no cars in there. At around 9:30 pm I was back there by myself while an investigator was in the command center tending to the live chat feed on the computer. The other two investigators there had gone outside to the West side of the property as requested by some of the people that were watching online. I had been back there for about five minutes standing in the soft red glow of the exit sign that was hanging over the back door. All the windows in that part of the building have been boarded over and then painted over as well so there was no light coming in from outside that building. I was able to make out the outline of most of the equipment that was right around me but the father an object was away from me the less defined the object looked.
So there I was in the back by myself conducting an E.V.P. session. I could not hear what ever noise they might have been making outside. The only noise I could hear was the occasional creak of the floor upstairs. My eyes have fully adjusted to the light that was there and I started to see movement in the shadows off to my left. I seemed to dart in to my field of view from time to time. Gaining in frequency the longer I was there. I stood back there on my own until the investigators that had been outside came back in. In all I was back there for no more than twenty minutes. I didn't feel uncomfortable the whole time I was back there because I am now used to this kind of activity having it happen to me many times before.
The second experience that I am going to tell you about in this article is something that happens less often than seeing shadows. In mid-November of 2011 we were investigating Longview Mansion for the first time. Around 2:00 a.m. we were investigating in the basement. Two investigators were investigating in the storage room with wooden floors. An investigator, Mike Hunter and I were in the laundry room in the southwest end of the basement. I would estimate that we had been in there for about ten minutes without any activity before I was touched by an unseen hand. I was standing close to the south wall in front of a washing machine. Mike Hunter was standing across the room from me close to the door that leads in from the main hallway and another investigator was standing next the small door that lead in to the bathroom. There were a few shirts on hangers hanging from a string that was strung up across the ceiling. Quite a bit of light flooded in from the door leading in the laundry room from the main hallway because there was a window in the door and a light right outside that we could not find a way turn off. We all could see around the room fairly well. There is a bathroom attached and a door that leads to an outside stairwell.
We were calmly asking a few questions hoping to get a response recorded on our recorders. Then I started to feel something very light on the elbow of my left arm. I could feel the individual fingers of a small hand grasp around my arm. Not hard but definitely there. It started with a small finger just below my elbow and then each finger closed above the last one until the fourth finger just above my elbow had finished closing. Lastly I felt a thumb on the other side of my arm. It’s stayed on there no more than a few seconds. From my stance and the way it gripped me it was the right hand of whatever was there. Then less than a second after it let go the shirts that were hanging from the string a few steps to my left started to sway back and forth. None of us felt a draft or had been moving around the room. We were unable to figure out how they were moving on their own. Through-out this experience I don't remember feeling frightened at all. There was more of a feeling of excitement that had washed over me hoping that it would not stop. But of course it did.
Next I will tell you about an experience that took place out in the woods of northeast Oklahoma. February of 2012 my group and I were asked to investigate a private ranch that used to be an Indian Reservation. In all they had 2700 acres of land. Of course we were not able to cover the whole place but were asked to focus on a few hot spots that the owner had a particular interest in. As requested by the owners we are not allowed to give out the name or location of the ranch, but are allowed to tell and show people what we caught and experienced as long as we don't identify were it is. The locations on the ranch that we had been asked to investigate were all indoors but we had asked if we would be allowed to explore the property if we felt like it. They gave us permission to go on any part of the land that we wanted to check out. At around 10:00 pm an investigator and I decided to go walk around a loop that a different investigator and I had walked about an hour before. It was not that long of a walk. Only about a mile, the path we took headed south from the main building that we were investigating. Most of the path was in a shallow valley that had a few rolling hills around it. The valley was clear; it was about 70 yards across with only grass growing in it. The hills were wooded pretty densely, if it were summer time there would be a lot of underbrush but because it was winter all of that was gone and all that was on the ground in between trees were last years dried up leaves. The path split the valley in two. About 150 yard south from where it began there is a fork. Part of it stays straight and the other part splits off to the left heading east. If we had went straight on south, about 200 yard or so, there is a small empty pond that had not been filled yet. Just past the pond there was a highway that had a tunnel under it so that the small creek that ran up the west side of the valley could pass under the highway. At the highway the path turns left and loops back around to the fork. We chose to take a left at the fork which at the edge of the valley starts heading up a hill. Just as we turn and pass the point that we can no longer see down in to the valley we hear some noise off to our left.
Before I get in to what we heard I would just like to take a moment and tell you that I am pretty comfortable being in the woods, even in the dark. I spent a lot of my childhood in the outdoors. I was a Boy Scout through-out my youth, went camping every summer with my family. To this day I will go park somewhere and just take off hiking in to the woods. I don't usually use a trail because when I'm out in nature I usually prefer to be alone. I am familiar with the sounds different animals make and how they usually react to humans. I know which ones are active at night and which ones are not. Whatever this was that we were hearing it did not move like anything I have heard before. It definitely sounded like it was on two feet. The movement seemed timid like it was not really afraid of us just cautious, like it was checking us out.
So there we were standing in the middle of a rocky path that was only a few yards wide heading uphill to the southeast. We start hearing footsteps off to our left. I'm not sure which one of us noticed it first but we both stopped in our tracks. Neither of our flashlights were strong enough to penetrate deep enough in to the trees to see what was out there. We did not have the thermal camera with us on this investigation. At first the footsteps were slowly moving closer to us. It sounded almost human. The crunching of the dried leaves below its feet were definite. One, Two, One, Two. Whenever we would say something it would stop. Both of us tried throwing small rocks in to the woods towards the sound to try and get a response. I think only once did it sound like it moved after we threw one. It would come toward us and then move away.
I'm not sure exactly how long this went on, probably about 15 minutes. We decided to call the other two investigators on the 2-way radios that we had and ask them to come out there and hopefully witness what we were experiencing. They got in a truck and drove out there but by the time they got to us it had moved far enough away that we could no longer hear it any more. When they stopped one of them got out and walked over to us while the other one stayed in his truck. As the one got to us the one in the truck said he saw something shoot through the woods to his right, which would have been behind us, but we did not hear it. After a few more minutes of waiting in hopes that it came back we decided to head back the building we had been investigating.
We all went back out one more time in the back of the truck around 2:30 am. We did not hear anything in that spot but was picking up intermittent hits on or K2 meter in the valley as we drove through.
The woods in the dark can be a very scary place. You feel exposed because it is hard to see what is around you. You never know what might be hiding behind the next trunk. That night there was not much wind but when there is it can be hard to tell what noises the wind is making and what noises whatever is out there with you is making. While the investigator and I were having this experience I wouldn't say that I was afraid but my senses were definitely on high alert, ready to react to what was there just beyond our vision. When the footsteps seemed to be moving towards us I couldn't help but think about what I could do to defend myself or a possible escape plan if it came to that. Luckily for us it did not that night.
That was not the only time I had an experience with something in the woods. The third time that I had my group out at Shawnee Mission Park I had a heart pounding walk through the woods as well. An investigator and Mike Day came with me on that investigation. We went and sat at a spot along the creek that runs under Ogg Road. Ogg Road is the small road that runs in to the north side of the park along Tomahawk Hills golf course. After we sat there for a little while the sun started to go down. Even though it was not that dark yet we decided to head back up to the cars at the top of the hill. We parked where the old house used to be at the stables. I wanted to walk straight up the hill through the woods to the cars to see what we might come across. I had done this many times on my own and new the terrain very well. They decided that they did not want to do this because they did not want to get caught in the middle of the woods when it got really dark. So they walked along the creek back to the road to head up to the cars.
I set out on my own up the steep side of a hill just above where we had been conducting our investigation. I would make it up to the top a lot faster than them because the way I was taking was a more direct route. So about halfway up I decided to stop and do a quick E.V.P. session. It was near the end of fall and most of the leaves were down and most of the underbrush was already gone. I could see pretty far through the trees. I was on a slight ridge. On both sides of where I was standing the ground sloped down in to valleys. I could see across to the next hill west of me. I had been standing there for only about two minutes when I noticed something on the other hill across the valley from me. It was the dark shape of a person. Standing between to large trees it seemed to be facing my direction. After a few seconds it took a quick step to its left behind one of the trees and I could not see it at all anymore. At that point it was getting darker and darker and did not want to get stuck out in the woods by myself with this thing in the dark. So I decided to end the E.V.P. session and started walking quickly uphill. I stopped after I had gone about 40 yards up and turned back to see if I could see what I saw before. I caught a glance of it down in the valley, closer to me than before, right before it ducked behind another tree. Seeing that it was getting closer to me had motivated me to move quite a bit faster. I got up the hill and was about 20 yards from the clearing when my curiosity got the better of me. I stopped and turned around one last time. It was almost completely dark now. There was still enough light that I could see the shadow person down where I had last turned around to try and spot it. This time it did not go behind a tree. It darted back down the hill after a few seconds of standing there looking at each other.
When I finally reached the clearing I felt quite relieved to be back out in the open. The thing, whatever it was, had stopped fallowing me. I took me a few more minutes to get back around to where the cars were parked. I was still the first one that got there. The whole time I was sitting by the cars waiting for them I was watching the tree line because I was getting that feeling of being watched. My members called me a few minutes later and asked me to drive down and pick them up. Even though the shadow person did not do anything that seemed really threatening I still felt like it was trying to. Not knowing what something is and what its intentions might be can definitely raise the hair on the back of your neck. I have been back out there numerous times since then, most of the time I was alone, and have not seen it since.
When my group first started we investigated a private fraternal order in Excelsior Springs, MO. At one point late in the night I was down stairs in the basement with one of my members at the time that was a member of this order. We were conducting and E.V.P. sessions in the north-west corner were they had a pool table set up. This area was fenced off by a white picket fence that came up to just able the level of my chest.
After we had been down there for roughly ten minutes the member that was with me said that he needed to go upstairs and grab some new batteries. As he headed up the stairs that were across the other side of the basement I stayed over where we were by the pool table. I was standing there with my flashlight on because I started to feel a little uncomfortable. This was the first time that I had been by myself while on an investigation. If I were to turn off my flashlight the whole basement would be completely dark because there are no windows down there that let light in. About a minute after he heads up my flashlights batteries begin to die and I do not have any spare ones on me. I was leaning my butt against the side of the pool table kind of half standing half sitting. Right as the last drop of light is about to go out I feel like someone is standing right behind me. I knew that if a live person was down there with me without me noticing it they would still not be able to stand behind me because of the pool table. Right after the light goes out I feel a quick breath of the back of my neck. As I am trying to brush that off as something not paranormal I feel it again, but this time it is heavier and feels warm. Now I am frozen. I knew that I should not run out of there because I believe that it is very unprofessional, but I want to get out. I am standing there contemplating what I should do, hoping that the member that had headed up stairs would be back down soon. Then I felt something push on my back. Not a finger or a hand but the whole chest of a body. It felt like half of a hug. Then the room began to shrink. The feeling of the walls closing in on me was all that I could think about, it clouded my other senses.
That is when I decide that I have had enough and wanted to get out of there. I had walk slowly and carefully back over to the steps since I had no light and could not see. I finally reached the stairs and that is where the light switches are. I flipped them on one at time half believing that I would see someone standing over in the corner that I came from with a big smile on their face, but when I hit the switch that lit up that area no one was there. After I got the lights on I could hear that the other member was on his way back down. I still wanted to get out of there and take a break. So I started to climb the stairs and each one got harder and harder to step up on to. As I went up my energy level went down. By the time I reached the top my whole body was shaking uncontrollably. The muscles in my legs felt like they had turned to Jello and was telling my body that they were going on strike. It felt like I had not ate anything in days and that my blood sugar was extremely low. I took me about thirty minutes to get feeling back real feeling in my legs and a bit longer to feel normal again. With-in an hour I felt almost better than I had felt before the experience.
So far at that fraternal order is really the only time that I can think of that I experienced true fear. All the other times that I had emotions that could have been easily mistaken as fear I believe had been different emotions altogether.
As I said before; “I believe that each of us has the ability to take control of any situation that may present itself.” Like F.D.R. said famously; “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” I believe that phrase rings true in many aspects of our lives possibly most of all in the paranormal. My experiences have told me that whatever these things are in the paranormal world are not evil and do not deserve to be feared. I'm sure there are exceptions of course but as of this writing I have not come across anything that I think means to harm anyo