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A Neighbours Help

Mark Romano, IL, USA
July 2002

This is a true story and there is no dramatics or exaggerations to benefit material, it is quite shocking nonetheless.

Here in the States, I live in the south side of Chicago? Chicago, Illinois, there is a "hotbed" of paranormal activity that has become infamous with its popularity.

The city of Chicago has been known to have hundreds of paranormal, unexplained phenomena. In the south suburbs of Chicago, we have 4 main points of interest. 1) Bachelors Grove Cemetery; oddly enough it is a 15 lot cemetery that sits on about 2 acres of natural forest preserve about 200 ft, from 143rd Street. It is common knowledge that the mob used to dump their victims in the pond that is less than a hundred feet away from the headstones, back in the 1950s. There are many different stories that are associated with this place; in general, to list them all would be a story in itself.

2) Resurrection Cemetery; now I know we all have heard about Resurrection Mary, and in 1979 the Iron Gate in the front of the cemetery were mysteriously burned with 2 hand prints in raw iron bars. Mary supposedly hitchhikes along 79th street and Roberts Road, or she takes a taxi. (which rarely is a spot to ever catch a taxi, the streets named are suburban) Wherever Mary requests to be dropped off, she vanishes before the car stops to let her out.

3) St. James Cemetery; this is commonly known as "Monks Castle". Monks have been reported in sightings and sometimes provide chase to a late night passer-by. Police in the area give chase to suspecting teenagers, but comment on the Olympic speed these apparitions possess.

4) Sauk Village; this small suburb is reported to be built on an Indian Reservation and the Sauk Trail, just too many stories to list.

These 4 places of interest have been documented on popular nationwide cable shows like: The Discovery Channel, The History Channel, and The Learning Channel. Oh yeah, let us not forget about the show "Sightings", from the Sci-Fi Channel. Every last one of these cable stations have stated within the past couple of years, that these specified areas are in fact the most active paranormal sites in the country. I mean you could walk in any one of these places with a camera and be guaranteed the film development will have some inconsistencies, and you can take that to the bank!

Now the story that I am about to tell is in the middle of the 4 places that I have stated. The name of the town is Worth, IL.

Settlers first arrived in 1858, a famed hero of the War of 1812 (the Brits second wave of futility) & the War with Mexico (Poncho Veihja, was some militant punk who stormed the border through Texas and slaughtered the innocent, during the Mexican Civil War, He retreated back to Mexico within hours of his invasion of the U.S., caught the eye of the government and was then decided to hunt him down? consequently the U.S. never captured him).

General William J. Worth, made legendary actions throughout both campaigns. With his presence, the settlers named the village after him.

OK, enough of the history lesson, in fact there are many more places of paranormal interest within the specified area, however, none that carry the reputation of the 4 stated. On with the story...

It was 1976, the place was Worth, IL, and a man named George had bought his first home with his wife and 4 daughters. Normal family with normal lives. This story will be centered on George and his youngest daughter Becky, who at the time was 5 years old.

There are some quick notes to mention about George, he was an honest middle-aged man with no serious problems.

As a hobby, George had renovated his garage to a small car repair center. It was his way of making extra income; he did have the professional equipment for the time too. The garage was in the back yard separated from his home. That was ideal for George because of the noise from his equipment. George had a day job, while his daughters were in school and his wife was a full-time Mom. They lived in the house for a year without any hint of activity. In early June of '77, is when things started to take place.

One night George took out his wife and girls to dinner, the family arrived back at the house in the late evening. George was the last one to leave the house, he was the last one to turn off the T.V., he was the last one to turn off all the lights and lock the front door. Upon entering the driveway, the whole family noticed that the front door was wide open with the lights on in the front room and the T.V. was on full blast. George checked the house out before the girls entered, and noticed the back door was open as well. It was not until after the local authorities left later in the same evening, George realized that his garage had been re-arranged, his equipment had been moved.

At first consideration George was convinced that it was local teens playing games. It was not considered to be impossible to pick locks, and since not one object was stolen or damaged it was a fair assessment.

A week later, George woke up at 4:00 A.M. to use the facilities (he had to urinate), and to his shock, the house had the very same scenario with the exception that his T.V. was on, just the volume knob had been turned all the way down, instead of up like the week before. George recalled standing in his front yard looking around for some explanation, late as it was, George made the rounds in turning off the lights and closing the doors, thinking that he would address the garage in the morning. George was figuring his tools would be re-arranged like before, however the tools were not disturbed, but for the next 3 days, his tools simply did not work. Still convinced at this point, was George, that his was the target for the local teen pranksters.

Within a few nights of the early morning incident, George was plagued by this hideous nightmare, where his children were being attacked, and George was powerless to help them. George did not mention specifics other than this nightmare scared the hell out of him, ya know the it was so real- thing. George was confronted with the possibility of a haunting by his wife. For whatever reason the average man wants to refuse this concept, George simply scoffed at the notion. For the next few weeks the house settled without incident, it was not until George's daughter Becky started to act strangely. This is where the phenomena took an ominous turn, as they say.

George, like any normal parent, would make sure his youngest daughter, Becky, was in bed by 9pm. With loose interpretation, his other 3 daughters were in their teens and self sufficient on their bedroom schedules. I mean 4 daughters, that poor man; imagine trying to use the bathroom in that house! (For any man that is a horror story in itself).

One night when George had noticed that Becky was not in her bed around 9:45 p.m. he was vexed. I remember George saying that his first thoughts centered on that he was not prepared to scold his youngest for disobeying him. Something to the effect of sobs & tears and hardship tactics that would eventually make him look like the bad guy to his youngest girl.

Let us take a moment here; Becky is the youngest, always wanting to enjoy the freedom that her older sisters had, naturally challenging authority. We have all seen the big teary eyed, lip quivering little girl requesting some harmless act like wanting to watch Johnny Carson. My God, I do not know how this man managed?! He has 4 daughters.... ok on with the show.

George was surprised when he noticed that Becky was not with her Mother or her Sisters. George ran back to the Becky's room and started to call for her. Becky responded by opening the closet door from the inside. George inquired," Becky... What are you doing? Why are you not in your bed? And what in the hell are you doing in the closet?" Becky replies," I was talking with the clown Daddy..." as she looks into the empty closet floor.

George has a million thoughts racing through his mind, but after a few moments he mutters," honey, take your friend out of the closet and go to bed, ok?" George is thinking a doll or some stuffed toy, as he is now looking at the empty clean floor of Becky's closet. Becky responds," Daddy, you scared him... He is gone." as she jumps back in bed.

George, on all 4's, was looking into this empty closet floor. Looking for a clown doll or a picture? nothing, the floor was clean. George was starring over his shoulder at his little girl behind him in the bed, trying to make sense of what just happened. George simply stood up turned to his daughter, tucked her in and told her to, "Go to sleep now." Becky says cheerfully," sure thing Daddy", she responded with out a care in the world. This felt weird and foreign to George, and he addressed this to his wife over the matter.

George and his wife concluded several possibilities, like imaginary friends or an over active imagination, but they felt that Becky was not in any harm.

Two days later, George decided to check on Becky again. It was 9:30 p.m. and George discovered that Becky was not in her bed; he called for her... again she opens the closet door from the inside. George, a little frustrated, informs Becky that she is not to have nightly rendezvous in her closet. Becky was unaware of George's disapproval at this point. George a little taken back by this behavior, decides to sit down and discuss these events with Becky. From this conversation, George is delivered a hint of what was to come.

Becky informs her Father, that the clown used to own the house. She also adds that the clown has a dislike towards her Father, and that every time George enters the bedroom, this clown gets up and walks through a wall in the closet. Becky gave one final note; that it was the clown's idea to talk in the closet so that nobody would hear him or her converse. Well, George kisses his little girl on the forehead and says," Honey, do not talk with this clown anymore. I do not want you to speak with this clown ever again." Becky smiled and jolted her head up and down as acknowledgement, then she says," He had said that you would tell me this one day." George spoke quietly," go to sleep honey."

George asks his wife to join him out on the patio in the backyard on the warm June evening. George and his wife were concerned. The perplexing issue was how and where to find help for the "ghost". George was not 100% confident that a ghost was his problem. George's wife was quite convinced, and found it a little irritating that George was not facing the music, as they say.

George's wife, Laura, spoke with neighbors and went so far to visit the Oak Lawn, IL library and the Green Hills Library, to search for records. Laura had discovered that her neighbors did not know a damn thing, and all she was able to find at the two libraries was the town name was changed in 1914 from Worth to "The friendly village of Worth". Laura was starting to get overwhelmed with hopelessness.

The very next night George had patiently waited for the time of 9:30 p.m. He makes his way up to Becky's room and has noticed that she is not in her bed. George, knowing the pattern by now, has decided to listen to his daughter. However, he was utterly and shockingly surprised when had heard a male voice accompanied with his daughters. George just froze, felt the hairs on the back on his neck stand. George ripped through the room to the closet door, just as he was about to grab the knob of the door, the door itself, opened about an inch ajar. In the split second to witness this, George was able to see through the now recent crack into the closet, George was able to make out his daughter in the corner of the closet? too far from the door, Becky was. George was able to come to the conclusion that his little girl was not the one to open the door just then; he was paralyzed with fear as to what could have opened the door.

As George was assessing the door literally opening itself, the closet light that was brightly shining, went out. Becky started to get very scared and in the midst of this confusion, she started to scream franticly. George made his way into the dark closet and grabbed his daughter, and immediately made his way downstairs, clutching his baby girl close to his chest. The commotion took some time to settle down, at 11:00p.m. That night, George's family spent the night at his neighbor's house. Except for George, he went back to the house and did not sleep a peep. George had asked his neighbor to accompany him that night at the house, the neighbor did just that.

The entire night George and his neighbor sat at the kitchen table talking about all the events leading up to that night, and the conversation lead to, inevitably, ghosts in general. George had reveled that he had not seen or witnessed any ghost in his life. Apparently, George has now heard one, the neighbor commented. George asked his neighbor whether or not if he knew the previous occupants of the house, the neighbor said that it was an older couple, very polite. Before the elderly couple it was unknown, but never a rumor of a haunting or a clown.

All through the night, George and his neighbor talked, and not once did the two men hear or see or even feel another presence in the house. As the night fell into the early hours, George and his neighbor had completely forgotten as to why they were sipping beers at 4:00 a.m. in his kitchen in an empty house.

Day finally came and George's family assumed business as usual. However, George's oldest daughter came home around the same time from the community college, about noon. The oldest was in the bathroom when she heard a very ominous laughter come out of thin air. That was it, from that incident; George's family spent their lives at the neighbor's house on a full time basis, until he could figure this out.

George was in a routine that he did not enjoy. He would come home, and make his way to the neighbor's house. George would spend about an hour or so and then make his way to his garage, keeping busy working on cars. George was not comfortable placing the burden on his neighbor; this impending feeling of doom would not leave his thoughts.

Within the first week of this new arrangement, Laura was pressing George to involve the Church. George was feeling insecure about the idea, and wanted more time to contemplate his actions. Although George would admit, he had absolutely no idea what his options were, if any. This was 1977, the movie GHOST BUSTERS was 6 years away from its release. There were organizations in Oak Lawn, IL at the time of paranormal research, but without the common use of the Internet and the fact these places did not exactly list themselves in the phone book, how could one come across the use of such practices?

A few nights had passed, and before the second week of the new arrangement was about to come to an end, there was a significant change in the atmosphere. George had recalled finishing all the side jobs that he had pending with his backyard hobby in the garage.

After George spent several hours with his family at his absolutely wonderful neighbor's house, he then decided to go home. George a little bored and somewhat feeling empty in his absent house, turned to the T.V. George recalled watching the movie WESTWORLD on WGN. The movie was about halfway in, about the time Yul Brynner's character went haywire and started to shoot the guests visiting the futuristic resort, George fell asleep on the couch. George recalled having an extreme nightmare. Where this unknown entity that was haunting his dreams a few weeks prior, where he felt his children were at risk, was now threatening George himself. George awoke very suddenly, and before he could get a grip on his situation, he found himself in the dreaded "Sleep Paralysis". George felt a huge weight on his chest; his body felt like it was in a large sponge that was wet, preventing him from moving. George thought that he was still dreaming, until he was able to roll his eyes to the T.V. Where he was able to identify the movie; Yul Brynner provides chase to an unfortunate guest in some underground hallway. George tried to roll his eyes to the clock, but was unsuccessful. George was paralyzed and he kept getting this impression of a clown laughing at him, sitting on his chest. When George recalls the incident, he cannot decipher the fact if he was able to see this entity of a clown or if he imagined it. Eventually George had recognized that it was raining very hard outside, and before he knew it, he was free.

George erected himself from the couch as though he had someone pull him to attention, breathing very hard and still dazed from his nap. There was something brewing in George that he had not felt since this whole ordeal came about. George was loosing all his fear and an intangible rage started to fill his soul. An anger George commented, that he had never felt before. George was without his family, concerned about his daughters, he had the impression he had lost his house? the man snapped. Frothing from the mouth, George was screaming on top of his lungs.

From one room to the next in the empty house, George was slamming the doors, punching the walls, challenging his unwanted guest. Cursing obscenities at this unseen foe, George was trying to make it apparent he had enough.

Time had passed and George was able to restrain himself to a sane state. Unaware of how much time had passed in his tangent of explosive anger, he found himself exhausted, and made his way to the kitchen. His throat dry from the insane conformity he found himself surrounded by, he grabbed a beer. George opened his back door and started to find peace by daydreaming into the back yard. The thunderstorm was fantastically wild and bright. Taken in by the storm, George had a feeling sneak up on him, pure fear. George started to look all around him, convinced there was a presence closing in on him. Within moments George felt as though he had made a mistake, like he pushed too far. The impending doom was broken when George heard his equipment in his garage, the air compressor pounding and the sander rattling. Something was catching George's eye in between the light provided by lightning. As George was focusing he noticed movement in the garage, by the service door window. The window was rhombus shaped, and in the view was a pitch black void. With a few more strikes of thick lightning George was shocked at what was illuminated in that darkness.

Before his eyes George met his unwanted guest:
white face, red nose, yellow hair the looked like two triangles jetting from each side of his bald head, and blackness where the eyes should be. Trying to take this in, George began to hear this sinister laugh that just placed terror in his heart. George turned white as this hideous shrieking laugh just engulfed him.

George bolted to his neighbors' house trembling all over. Practically incoherent, George described the events to his neighbor. George's neighbor decided to inspect the house for himself, and proceeded next door. Visibly the house looked as though it was abandoned with haste. The lights were still on as well as the T.V., and the back door was open. The neighbor looked around the first floor not exactly sure for what purpose. Starting to get the impression that this inspection of the house was futile, the neighbor went to close the back door and shut off the kitchen lights. The neighbor looked into the front room and decided to shut down the T.V. As he stepped across from the linoleum floor to the carpeted dining area, there was a distinct noise from above.

The neighbor could hear water pelting a rug upstairs in the house. Considering the thunderstorm, the neighbor figured there was a window left open on the second floor and the rain was falling through. The neighbor, a courageous man, had no experience surrounding this presence. Somewhat skeptical and never seen anything first hand, the neighbor lacked fear.

He trotted upstairs looking for the window to close, after all insurance companies do not cover water damage.

Sure enough the neighbor came across the door upstairs with graded kindergarten papers tacked all over the door, headed with the name "Becky"; without question, the sound of water was definitely behind this door. The neighbor started to contemplate the reason for this room to have an oddity at this time, quickly deducing that for what it was obvious, the presence was attracted to Becky.

The neighbor grabbed the handle of Becky's bedroom door and entered the room. Sure enough there was a window opened on the far wall. The neighbor walked causally to the window to close it. As he placed himself in front of the window, the atmosphere in the room became charged. There was a sudden feeling of dread and hopelessness that just washed over the neighbor's body. An indescribable notion that there was an influence of cognitive thought pressing the walls of his mind.

The neighbor began to look around the room as though he was going to be smacked at any moment by some invisible force. It was at this time he realized that it would be wise to close the window and leave; within moments that is exactly what he did. As the neighbor turned around to leave, the closet had caught his eye. Whether the fact it was open at the time of his first entering the room or not, it was open now. The neighbor just realized everything seemed to be in black & white, and there was something in the closet that was very black.

Paralyzed the neighbor became aware of the movement of this black abnormality. The blackness seemed to fold on itself slowly, and it began to grow in size. Fear was filling the neighbor as he walked backwards to the door of the room itself. Before the neighbor could walk into the hallway, there was a rustling sound that started. Not looking at the closet the neighbor exited the room and made his way to the stairs. Halfway down the stairs, the neighbor heard Becky's door slam violently. In a full gallop, the neighbor was in the front room heading for the front door. All the time from the stairway to the front room, the neighbor could see blackness cornering his eyesight. Within steps of the front door, the neighbor heard someone scream, "Get Out!! Now". It was definitely not that of a man to utter those words, in fact, it just was not human.

A second had passed and the neighbor was out of the house never to step foot inside again. Returning home, the neighbor immediately confronted George to follow him to the front lawn. In the middle of the rain and out of range from George's family ears, the neighbor addressed George with utmost sincerity? "Get your family out of that hell hole!"

George had invited the local pastor to the house within the week, and then a team of parapsychologists two days later. By the beginning of the next week, George and his family were moved out. The house sat on the market for several months before another family purchased the home. The neighborhood had not heard of this haunting, nor does Becky remember any of the conversations she had with the clown. The new family had not encountered the entity that haunted George and his family. George had briefly stated that there was an exorcism performed and whether or not it was successful, George decided.

As for the skeptics, to simply state that the paranormal does not exist? is the best way to show people how ignorant and stupid one could be. The question lies as to where and how these energies draw power for manifestation. Most people do confirm that encounters seem to tap a certain side to our conciseness, and we seem to be vulnerable. Most seem to forget that speaking the Lord's prayer does banish the unwanted. As for the events that you just read, are in fact true. I should know. If you have not figured it out by now, I was the neighbor.

Mark Romano, IL, USA
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