In 1991,I was employed at a locally owned, low-power TV station. One of the secretaries was a mid-50s lady. One day, my interest in such things came up with another co-worker. She overheard us talking and mentioned she had a photo of a ghost.
I was very intrigued and asked the story behind it. She looked at me and said, "Young fellow, it's best if you see the photo first, and then I'll tell you about the day it happened. I'll bring it to work with me tomorrow."
I said, "You got a date!"
The next day, I worked the 3 to 11 shift. I worked in the control room, inserting the commercials into the shows. She walked in and laid the picture on the desk in front of me.
"Before you say anything," she said, "just look at it for a minute."
I did. It was your standard old-school pharmacy 35mm color film print. What I saw was a man standing on the second-floor balcony of a house. He was not blurry or grainy or any of the other common tropes you see in alleged ghost photos. It was just a white male, looking off into the distance, apparently unaware his photo was being taken.
Once you noticed his clothes was when you were kinda like, "Wait." He was wearing a white t-shirt and those 1940s/50s type baggy slack/pants, and what appeared to be a 1950s style of work boots. He had an undercut/pompadour hairstyle. He appeared to be 40ish. He was clear as could be in the photo.
Then the woman, whose name I'm pretty sure was Janelle, told me what happened the day she took it. The photo was taken in the summer of 1981. She and her husband were amateur gardeners/flower growers, and they would document each season's plantings, bloomings, and all that by taking photos of them.
She said, "I went out into my yard one afternoon with my camera to get some photos of our plants. I got to the back of the yard, looked back at the house, and saw the man standing there. It scared the shit out of me, and I quickly began walking back up the yard to go out the gate. I thought someone had broken into my house. As I went back up the yard, I realized I had my camera in my hand , so I stopped and took a photo of the guy."
She said she never once felt like the guy saw her or was even aware she was there. She got out of her yard and went to a neighbors. They called the police and she called her husband. The police searched the house, as did her husband, who rushed home from work. They found nothing.
The police made note that she'd photographed the guy and asked her to bring the photo to an investigator when she got the film developed. She did, and when they saw it, the said, "Well, was indeed someone at your house." They made some notes, a description of the guy, and gave her the picture back after making a color copy of it.
She said that unlike most other stories you hear with such things, nothing had ever happened leading up to this day. No mysterious events or anything like that. The house was completely locked except the back door she'd come out of, so they were all baffled by it.
It was not till a week or two later that her husband and kids pointed out she might've seen a ghost and had a photo of an actual ghost.
I believe her story, and if she was pulling my chain, that was a hell of a set up. What made me believe was how crystal clear the man in the photo was. Perfect as you please, none of the typical traits you see in ghost photos. It was in focus. Everything was visible. It was clearly taken with 80s film in an 80s-era camera. It was just that the man in it appeared to be from maybe the late 40s, 50s, or even the early 60s.
I have no access to this photo, nor do I know the woman anymore. I left that job just before the holidays in 1991, and I have not seen her since.