The most disturbing 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.
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?
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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