Saturday, September 26, 2009

Family Ghost Story From The 1940s Onward - British Columbia, Canada

Hi Brian, I will send you a separate email so you know who this story is coming from. I noticed your category for ghost stories and thought I'd add a bit to your collection. However please be forewarned, it is not dramatic. No chains or moaning! More like just an unusual family member.

My family has always had ghosts. As a young boy living in Vancouver and Alert Bay my father sometimes saw people who were not there and my mother once watched a group of people disappear right in front of her. She was 15 years old and walking down a street near her home in Vancouver. Coming towards her on the sidewalk but on the next block, was a group of about a dozen people. The first thing she noticed was their odd clothing, very old fashioned. She then realized that although they appeared to be talking and laughing there was no sound of voices or of feet on the sidewalk. They reached the corner of their block and turned down the side street just before my mother reached the end of her block. She looked around the corner and although they should have been just a short distance away there was no sign of them. For people who live in Vancouver this was in the Kits area around 4th and happened about 1930.

When my parents married in Prince George in 1942 they built a house near the south side of Connought Hill. In those days that was quite far out of town and very quiet, particularly at night. During the winter of 1943 the ghost arrived.

It announced its arrival by walking up the steps to the front door shortly after my parents went to bed. They could hear the footsteps squeaking in the dry snow as it came up the stairs right outside the bedroom window. No matter how quickly they jumped out of bed and looked out the window they saw nothing unusual. However within 10 minutes of going back to bed a hazy white light about four feet tall would drift past the bedroom door. It never seemed to do any harm and they eventually got used to it. In the summer they never heard it arrive but one of them would notice it go by and calmly comment that the ghost was back. Mom used to wish there was some way of getting it to do housework if it was going to be wandering around all night!

Three years later we moved to the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia and dad built another house that we lived in for 12 years. Sure enough, before long the ghost was again drifting through the hallways. Then for several years it was gone until one night I awoke to see it float past my bedroom door. The next morning my mom was a bit excited. Before I could say anything about the ghost she said "Guess what? The ghost is back and this time I saw it take a shape!" She had woken up to see a white hand and arm reaching towards the bedside lamp. Thinking it was my dad she reached out and turned on the light. Of course there was no one there and my dad was deep asleep.

We then moved to Victoria and this time we rented a house instead of building one. It took the ghost about six months to join us. Over the years my parents rented four more houses before buying the one I live in now. Yes, the ghost went with us to every one of them. It was never more than just a white haze until the late 1960's. Then it took on a very familiar shape. One afternoon my parents were sitting in the living room when Timmy, our Border Collie, walked through the room and down a hallway toward the bedrooms. As he went by he gave them a rather unusual look. A few minutes later they heard him barking. He was outside and wanted in. He never had been in the house and walking through the room.

No, there were no open windows or doors. My parents checked! The ghost was changing and not always for the better! A few months later my parents were again in the living room when they heard a loud crash in the kitchen. They found that a big bottle of wood stain that was normally at the back of one of the upper kitchen cabinets had somehow come out of the cupboard (the door was still closed) the lid removed and placed on the counter and the bottle thrown against the opposite wall. However, as that was the worst damage that it ever did, we all just accepted that it was there and pretty well ignored it.

Just as an aside, around this time my parents saw two people disappear on the sidewalk outside the house. One afternoon they happened to notice four people walking along the sidewalk, two women in front and two men very close behind them. They were dressed in oddly old fashioned clothes and were bunched so close together that mom and dad thought the men would be stepping on the ladies dresses. For a very brief moment they were out of sight as a tree blocked part of the view from the house. All four went behind the tree and only the two women came out. The tree was near the house, nowhere near the people. The women did not appear to notice the men were gone. There was nowhere the men could have gone and dad even went outside to look. Nothing.

Many years later my younger brother was visiting our house with his wife and baby. I was married no longer living there. They were staying in the bedroom across the hall from my parents. During the night my mother suddenly awoke. A few minutes later the baby started to scream. Just as my brother got up in the dark to see to the baby, a basketball sized ball of light shot down the hallway. Immediately the baby stopped crying. Everyone was so startled they all got up and went into the living room. There, even with the lights on, they saw a couple of smaller balls of light bouncing near the ceiling in the corner of the room. It was very brief and then they were gone.

As the years went by the appearance changed. My mom died and dad still lives with us in the house. He and I have both seen a new shape. This one is shaped like a very narrow black hockey stick (not my idea of a ghost at all!) and darts around very quickly. I saw it first on Christmas Eve in 1992 but never mentioned it. A few days later my dad told of an odd black shape he'd seen darting through the house. the description matched exactly what I had seen. Other than changing size from tall to very short it doesn't really do very much except run around.

As I said at the beginning, our ghost is not dramatic, thank goodness! I would not be surprised if lots of people have similar "beings" but don't even really notice. However there were some rather strange, unsettling and dramatic events that took place during this time. One ghost (or angel?) even saved my life. Right now is not the time to go into it all but if you'd like I'd be happy to give you the details at a later date. Closer to Halloween perhaps! Now, in spite of the fact that I say the ghost didn't really frighten us, it is getting late, I am home alone and there is no light in the house except from the computer screen. I think I'd best stop for now before I start to hear strange noises ! I'm not quite as brave as I like to think I am.

Thank you to the person for the wonderful Ghost experiences.

Brian Vike, The Vike Factor (Into The Paranormal)

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