top of page

St. Luke's

Rii, Florida, USA
October 2006

St. Luke's is a tiny cemetery protected by a flimsy chain link fence and a gate that's never locked. It's accessed by a dirt road, and besides the open field directly behind the cemetery it's a pretty wooded area. Off to the back left corner, but not all the way to the back is a care taker's cabin that's now empty. It's rumored that years ago, when the cemetery was still in use ( as the latest tombstone I've found was back in 1989) two teenagers had wandered into the cemetery. At that time it was overseen by an ordinary old man who at once went out to meet and chase away the teenagers. The night ended in murder and the caretaker was found strangled. Legend has it that if you go into the cabin, you'll feel like you can't breathe. Especially in the corner that they say he was found, but it's never clear as to where exactly that was.

Two years back, I was only sixteen and completely into the idea of being a "Ghost Hunter". I was hanging out with a friend and we were absolutely bored out of our minds so we jumped at the chance to investigate this rumored-to-be-haunted cemetery.
We visited it two nights in a row. The first night it was just my friend and I. Armed with nothing but a flashlight and a teenage sense of adventure, we carefully passed in through the gate. I'm the worrier of the group, always afraid something is going to go wrong and we're all going to die. Like maybe some lunatic would see two girls alone in a cemetery and decide it was time to turn into a serial killer and we'd be chased through the cemetery and then the field and into the thicket of trees. So when we first entered I'd spent my time planning an escape route for us to the car just in case. My friend however, was wandering about the cemetery which was basically just rows of tombstones and place markers, the cabin, and the space behind the cabin.
While I was carefully walking along the rows of tombstones, making sure not to disrespect anyone by stepping on them, my friend had wandered behind the cabin only to come running out looking as pale as well.. a ghost! She claimed she'd heard a wheezy laugh that seemed to come from nowhere, but also come from everywhere. Thinking it was just her imagination we decided to check out some of the tombstones and wait for something else spooky to happen so we could get our thrills and leave. Boy did we get our wish..
The wheezing! It happened again. It started really low and then gained volume within a matter of seconds. We BOTH heard it. Dropping my flashlight by the tombstone of an infant and her father we bolted, running, screaming, through the gate. Kicking up dirt and gravel as we ran we didn't stop until we were safely in my friend's pontiac sunfire. We locked the doors as if that would protect us and zoomed off back for the main road. The next night we came back. We brought another friend to strengthen our numbers!
This time we hopped the fence. Once all three of us were safely over we scoured the tombstones for my flashlight. I swore I'd dropped it between two tombstones, one for an infant and one for her father. But my flashlight was nowhere to be seen. We figured nothing of it. We wandered and explored the tiny, open cemetery. The second friend spotted a light coming from the side of the house, and not a small light but the kind you would find from a streetlight. When we'd walk toward it, it would disappear. If we walked around to the side of the house you couldn't find a source for it. So we decided it must be inside the house. But should we go in? Of course! There was THREE of us now, not just two. And nothing could bring us down! I guess we were terribly wrong...
The lock on the cabin had long since been broken so we easily just pushed the door open. It was dark, no source of light. My friends flicked on their flashlights. All that was in the house was a little lamp on a table, an ugly floral print couch, a little kitchen table with a chair, an old rickety looking fridge and stove off to the corner, and then two more doors in the back. We didn't bother to go in. As soon as we stepped in, our throats all felt tight, as if we couldn't breathe quite right. We ignored it and continued in, walking around the couch and chair. My second friend walked into the right north corner to turn on the lamp, which surprisingly enough didn't work. I went to open the fridge, illuminated by the faint beam of the flashlight of my first friend who was right behind me. Inside we found something that made the hair on the back of our necks stand on end. My flashlight! We left it there turning to face the other friend. At this point, she was gripping her neck as if she was choking. Wheeze.. wheeze. We all heard it, even my choking friend. I moved forward, taking the arm of my second friend in the corner and jerking her forward. And we RAN from the house so fast that we barley had time to notice the fence before we plowed into it, scrambling up and over it as we practically all threw ourselves into the car and didn't even have time to close the door before my first friend was speeding down the road, barley glancing back to see the whole cabin itself illuminated from the inside.
My second friend, the one who was in the corner turned her head to see it as we drove away. That's when I noticed a strange marking on her neck, like bruises in the shape of fingers. She swears she didn't know they were there, and ever since all three of us try to avoid driving by the dirt road that leads you down by the cemetery, and when we do there's nothing creepy that happens.. It just reminds us of that wheezing.
For anyone interested in visiting St. Luke's it's now visible off of Slavia Drive, in Oviedo Florida. Slavia is off of Red Bug Lake Rd.

Rii, Florida, USA
00:00 / 01:04
bottom of page