4 Strange Cases of Phone Calls from Beyond the Grave

By on May 22, 2015 // Ghosts & Phantoms // 18 Comments

Image: Jeramey Jannene via CC by 2.0
Image: Jeramey Jannene via CC by 2.0

The most disturbing phone call you receive tonight may not, in fact, be that telemarketer asking if you use Windows; it may, instead, be a phone call from beyond the grave.

A Final Goodbye

Don’t believe me? Consider the events of September 12, 2008, when a Metrolink commuter train passing through the Chatworth district of Los Angeles collided with a freight train. One of its passenger’s, Charles E. Peck, died on impact at 4:22 p.m. that day, and 25 others also perished in the crash.

However, Peck’s story did not end there. For 11 hours, up until the point when rescue teams recovered his body, Peck’s cell phone dialed out to a number of his family members – his fiancée, his stepmother, his brother, his sister, his son. All they heard when they answered was static, and returning the calls only led to his voicemail.

The calls were, however, able to lead searchers to the location of Peck’s body some 12 hours later, at which point they determined he had died on impact. An hour before they found him, the calls stopped.

Although, strangely enough, they never did locate his cell phone.

Be Careful

Another ghostly phone call occurred on September 20, 1988, involving the prolific author Dean Koontz. As Katherine Ramsland of Psychology Today shared in 2013, Koontz had been at his office that day when he received an unexpected phone call. When he answered, “a female voice that sounded far away” spoke to him.

But it only spoke three words: “Please, be careful!”

Koontz asked who it was, but received no answer. Instead, the ghostly voice simply repeated its cryptic warning three times before fading to silence.

Koontz sat dumfounded, listening intently to the now-silent phone line, and he wondered. Who could it have been? His number was unlisted, after all, and the voice sounded strangely like his mother’s. But she had been dead for almost two years.

Perhaps his story wouldn’t be worth mentioning here if not for what happened only two days later.


Now, you may be wondering: with these being phone calls, especially with the existence of voicemail, surely some recordings are available. Good thinking. While you can’t trust everything you see or hear on the Internet, there’s always something.

On April 12, 2011, for example, the above video was uploaded to YouTube. It contains an alleged ghostly phone message. From the video’s description, we’re told that the uploader’s grandfather passed away on December 23, 2010, only a few months prior to the video’s upload date.

The phone rang once, and the uploader immediately received a voice mail notification. “This is what I got,” she wrote, “White noise, and a clear whisper ‘Grand – Pa’.”

Is this a real voicemail from the dead?

No Number

Of course, who really uses a phone these days, anyway? Believe it or not, a few messages from the dead have arrived not by phone, but by text message.

In 2008, The Register reported the bizarre tale of a Lancashire man who claimed to be “haunted” by text messages from his deceased wife. They had, after all, buried her with her cell phone. The texts would contain words that she’d often used, but there would be no number. The strange experience did, however, begin with a missed call, one from his own number, and the strange smell of his wife’s perfume.

That’s not to mention the strange encounters he and his family had experienced involving what they called The Thing, but perhaps that’s a story for another time.

Strange text messages. Phone calls with nothing but static, or faint voices that seem to fade away. A chilling voicemail. Again, this is the Internet. These are stories. You can’t trust everything you read or see or hear these days.

But you can wonder…

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About the Author

Rob Schwarz is a writer, blogger, and part-time peddler of mysterious tales. He manages Stranger Dimensions in between changing aquarium filters and reading bad novels about mermaids.

  • Brandon Ryan

    Never got a call from the dead, but one time I was out with friends and my phone died. About an hour after it died, I received a phone call on it. It promptly died again after answering.

  • luke

    the haunted house I’ve alluded to in other posts had an antique crank phone that wasn’t hooked up to anything but it would ring on occasion.

  • David L. Kern

    In may of 1975 my grandparents both died from heart attacks 13 days apart with their 53rd wedding anniversary in between. The day after we buried my grandfather, the phone rang. It was my grandmother, who by then had been dead for 18 days, telling me that they were fine and than she would always watch over me. At first, I didn’t realize who it was, but when it dawned on me, her voice started to grow distant and static began to build up until I could no longer hear her. That was when I started to get into paranormal research.

    • Aleggra

      David, I just found this article a year after my mom died. A few days after she passed, I received a phone call that sounded like static but had voice intonations. In other words, it was static with speech patterns. I thought it was my phone. I kept saying, “Hello?” and I’d get an answer. I had this weird feeling it was my mother but on the phone? Now, I’ve just come across this a year later. If spirits are energy, then the phone is a perfect conduit to get in touch. I’m curious. Did you hear your grandmother’s actual voice? I didn’t. Just static sounding like a voice answering me. Now I know it’s was her –a whole year later. I wish she’d call again.

    • Indigo

      I was on the phone with my boyfriend and I remember talking… Mid-sentence, I had to stop because I heard my mom’s voice saying my name.. It wasn’t comforting or sweet. She sounded sinister and angry with me… she kept whispering my name over and over again until I put the phone on speaker and it stopped…. just to see if it would start again, I took my phone off speaker and it started again… Most terrifying day of my life. She died two days after we had a bad argument and stopped talking.

  • Lali Lanah

    My Cousin Ahmed died few weeks ago he used to stay up all night and a day after his death at the same time he died I got a missed call from a unknown number I called that number again the caller said Help me Lali..and I am so horrified that voice was ahmeds voice.

    • Woodham Hammer

      How did you manage to phone back an “unknown number”?

    • Aleggra

      Good question. Obviously this didn’t happen.

    • loka

      good question

    • Ann

      She may have meant unknown to her, as in she simply didnt know ir recognize the rumber.

    • Aleggra

      You’re right. Could be it was unknown to her. She didn’t say, caller ID marked “unknown number.” Good story, anyway.

    • Jill Donaville

      Ok so yesterday my guy and i were both upstairs, he was in his bathroom, i was in my room, i forget what i wanted but i went in his room and his cell phone starts ringing, but it was my phone calling him and my cell phone was on the charger downstairs, tjere was no way i called him, it was crazy. Not to mention impossible, anyway he goes maybe someone is down there , i go and check, phone still on charger, and sure enough my phone shows an outgoing call . I was spooked outta my mind and say omg what is it a ghost? Later last night i get a phone call from my cousin saying my aunt passed and i didnt put 2+2 together till we hung up. My aunt had always wanted to come to Vegas and i think she finally did, and at the same time wanting to communicate and let me know she was there. I remember our last talk and can still hear her voice, i am glad i told her i love her, she will truly be missed but im comforted to know shes no longer in pain. Peace

    • 1 time man

      Damn, I’m watching celeb ghost stories and saw “bubba” from forest gump talking about this happening to him. He said that he tried going to his moms house twice and both times she told him get back in the car and go home. The second time though, she told him if he saw any of his friends don’t stop jus keep driving. His mom ends up calling him and invites him over and says one of his childhood friends has been killed. Emotional, he talked to his GF about the whole thing and then the phone rang. Hus gf picked it up and said it was his friend that just died. He thought one of his friends was playing tricks on him until he heard Help me Mike help me only you know how to help me. He described the background as like a bbq noise or firey noise and he could hear his friend fighting saying don’t let them take me. He could also hear the disembodied voices and he said it sounded like they caught up to him and took him then the line went completely dead. He called the operator to get a trace on the call and said nothing was showing up but look on his bill it should show and nothing popped up. It might be worth noting that when his mom told him about his friends death, she said he was looking for him. She also said she wouldn’t let him near him cause he had something called “The Look of Death” meaning that death was close to him cause she was some kind of psychic. He said she should have told him maybe he could have helped but she said no it was too late.

  • Annika Rantala

    well i have experienced this when both first my boyfriend died,phone calls at 2 o clock in the night each night for a month, and only static on the other side,and then when my father died,also phone calls from his phone to mine after his death.In other cases when people close to me have “died”-nothing at all-the difference seems to have been that both in my boyfriends and my fathers case,we had agreed that the person “going over” first,should communicate with the person left behind.

    • Aleggra

      Annika, when this happened to me no one believed me. It only happened once on the phone & other noises next to my bed. A year later & I come across this article. It blew me away. I thought it had been in my mind (wanting my mom to communicate). Now I know she did. Knowing now that it was her makes me feel so much better. My mom always did the Quija Board & believed in spirits. I’m so glad I found this article. It gives me a sense that she’s still around. You lost 2 boyfriends? That rough. But them getting in touch with you must’ve helped. It’s helped me.

  • vivek

    i got a call from 8650355986…..seriously that was more than haunted

  • Dominique Padua Balabat

    Ok. We had this exact same experience with my aunt. My aunt (my moms sister) died of chicken pox complications last Oct of 2001.. And we smell her fave perfume that we prayed over on her coffin. so months passed, Christmas eve came (dec 24 morning). We went to my other aunt (still my mom’s sister) and she told us that our aunt who passed away was by her bedside and greeted her Merry Christmas! She was sort of half-awake when she stood by her bedside. My mom was so jealous she was not greeted by her sister (our aunt who passed away). So then came 11:45pm of December 24. Our phone rang and when I answered it the first time, there was no one. Nothing, as if it were a prank call. We knew it was a long distance call because it rang twice at a time (it sounded like ring-riiiiiiiiinggg… ring-riiiiiiiiinnngggg…). local calls only ring once at a time. my aunt used to call us long distance.

    So when I heard no one, i hang up the phone. Just when I hang it up, it rang again. We find it impossible since it was too soon for a long distance call to connect again. So my father picked up. Nothing. We took turns with my brothers. Until my mom answered the phone on the 6th time the phone rang. My mom greeted politely and said, “Hello, Merry Christmas!”. And my dead aunt’s voice replied, “Hello Lai Merry Christmas.” My mom went shocked and cried and shouted “Hello Jen!!!!!!!!” The line was cut with a busy line beep. Up to now it still creep us out. I know there’s something after death.

    When my mom composed herself after a moment, she shared to us what she heard. She said my aunt’s voice sounded far from the mic as if it was on speaker mode and she sounded like she has a runny nose. And guess what her backgroud was??? She heard choirs singing in the background as if it were angels. We just assumed it to be angels. But she definitely described it as large number of choirs doing their chorus.

    I know it’s hard to believe especially that my mom is longing for my aunt to speak to her for the last time. But nothing else would explain what happened during that chrismas eve.

  • facebook

    I has a somewhat similar experience. My phone rang and I picked the phone up on the first ring before the ring had stopped. I heard several beeps and then someone answer “Hello” and the other party saying “Hi!” The funny thing was I knew the people on both ends. The one being called lived 2 blocks down from me, the other lived several miles away across town. I didn’t let on I was on the line too. They didn’t say anything personal. I have never forgotten it. My guess in your situation is that either “Tammy” or “Scott” lived very close to you and were on the same