MagazineOctober

Paranormal Activity: U of A edition

It’s a classic fear — it inspires campfire stories and horror movie franchises, it’s our first thought when we hear a suspicious noise in the night: the paranormal. Sometimes it may just be the wind, but there are also times where the wind can’t explain why you wake up at 3 a.m. to see a figure at the foot of your bed. Whether you’re a believer or not, take a moment to read about four students’ brushes with the paranormal. In the end, you’re free to draw your own conclusions.


EMMA WILLIAMS  
Fourth-year Education

I went on a trip with my family to Sedona, Arizona. We entered our condo and it seemed no different than the ones we’ve been in previously. My mom used to do this thing where she would open my door in the morning and check on me and would accidentally leave it open. I assumed this is what happened because my door opened in the night and it didn’t close. I asked my mom in the morning why she came to check-in on me and she said she didn’t, so I thought I didn’t latch the door properly. The next night I [made] sure to latch the door so it wouldn’t open. I [stayed] up till around 1 a.m. and I [could] hear my what I thought was mom’s footsteps in the hallway, no big deal. But then I [started] to hear scratching on the wall above my head. I talked to my dad the next day and he told me it was probably a mouse.

The next night, the door floats open again and I hear steps in the hall. Assuming it’s my mother, I get up to talk to her. When I look into the hallway, there’s nobody there. I close the door [and] latch it. Once again, the door opens all the way. After that night, I left the door open every night because I was too spooked. I get my dad to check my door the next day after I latch it and he can’t open it from simply pushing, he needs to twist the doorknob and push. At this point I’m arguing with my parents in the living room because they don’t believe me. Out of nowhere the fireplace doors slam shut SO HARD, making the loudest bang. A cross breeze couldn’t do that, somebody actively slammed the doors shut. Then the WiFi and the phone lines cut out for the rest of the day. So, for the rest of the trip I made sure to keep my door open and to go to bed before the scratching started consistently at 2 or 3 a.m. It could’ve been an animal, but the fireplace doors slamming have me convinced it was a ghost.


PETER ELIMA 
Fourth-year Design

It was 2009 and I was in high school. A big typhoon hit Manila. Typhoons are normal in the Philippines and sometimes they are not extreme, but this storm was different. It flooded our school and a lot of the employees and students got stranded inside the campus. My parents worked at my school, so we were all stuck together. We were staying the night at my dad’s office because it is impossible to drive home. Then in the middle of the night we heard someone screaming. My parents, me, and the other stranded people were curious and went to see what was happening. We saw a female student screaming with people holding her against a chair. The people holding her said that the girl might be possessed by a “spirit.” The school was run by priests so we had them present. A priest came and did a ritual [or] prayer and used  what looked like holy water on her, but it just kept on going. The exorcism ended when a guy turned on a bright flashlight. I don’t know if it scared the spirit or something but the girl stopped screaming. The guy who turned the light on fainted. My mom and I panicked and we were scared that the spirit might move to our bodies since he was beside me. However, he gained consciousness after a couple minutes but couldn’t recall what happened to him. The storm ended the next day and we went home.


KRISTY DIRKS 
Fourth-year Psychology Specialization

When I was 14 I was lying in my bed about to fall asleep. I’m lying there and all of a sudden I have this weird feeling come over me. Then I hear knocking on my walls. I sleep in the basement so it’s impossible [that] something outside [would be] knocking on my walls. I ignored it, but then it happened again. I laid in bed hoping for the feeling to go away before I heard a voice saying “we’re coming for you.” I didn’t know if it was my own thoughts or actually something else. Then the voice repeated “we’re coming for you” and the final words were “we’re at the end of the hallway.” I ran upstairs so fast and I didn’t sleep in my room for a few nights after that.


AMANDA PIPELLA 
Fourth-year Education

It was the first day of spring break in our last year of high school. I decided to have some people over that night since my parents were away that weekend. There were about 30 people hanging out in my backyard having a good time. All of a sudden there was an ear-piercing scream coming from the front of my house. Then, a car alarm started going off. My first thought was that someone got hit by a car. We come to the front of the house to see that it was my friend’s SUV alarm going off. One of the doors of the SUV was open and that was where the scream was coming from. We come closer to see that he and his girlfriend were in the backseat and she was lying across his lap, back arched and screaming an ear-piercing scream with her eyes rolled back in her head. We asked what happened and he said he had no idea, that she just started doing this out of nowhere. I asked if she is having a seizure, but my friend beside me (who has epilepsy) immediately said that it wasn’t a seizure.

So, my next thought was to bring her inside. The girl could not walk and was still screaming, so we got [her] boyfriend to carry her inside. We [brought] her down to my basement and [laid] her on my couch. She [continued] to arch her back, thrash around and scream with her eyes rolled back in her head the whole time. We tried to talk to her and calm her down but nothing was working. Then, she suddenly went dead silent. The silence of the room was incredibly eery and we all looked at each other with unease. Suddenly, she throws herself on the ground and crawls into a ball. Rocking back and forth, the girl suddenly started to sing “Amazing Grace” in a very low voice. At this point, we all begin to freak out. Some people in the group who were religious began to pray over her and one person even took out a rosary and held it against her, but she threw it across the room and sneered at it. People were yelling that she was possessed while others were saying that we should take her to a hospital. The girl suddenly flipped over onto her back and started arching her back again and thrashing around. When she did this time, she made eye contact with a few of us, myself included, and we all felt chills to our bones. The look in her eyes gave me a feeling that it wasn’t her looking at me. At this point, I was obviously freaking out. Some people were crying and others just completely left the room and even went home.

Finally, after what felt like forever, she suddenly went quiet and very still. We all held our breath, expecting something even crazier to happen, but nothing did. After waiting a couple of minutes the boyfriend carried her out of my house and took her home. Most of the other people had left already but the few people who were still at my house all looked at each other in disbelief. There were talks about what we had just witnessed: some said she was possessed, some thought she took some bad drugs. When we came back to school after spring break, everyone acted like nothing had happened and no one talked about it. I did hear from some people that the girlfriend didn’t remember anything that happened.

Khadra Ahmed

Khadra is the Gateway's 2019-20 Staff Reporter, dedicated to providing intersectional news coverage on campus. She's a biology major and a women's and gender studies minor so if you want to talk about embryology, the development of medical perception or the intersections between both, she's your gal.

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