I am an author and paranormal enthusiast who has published numerous books and articles on the subject of true unexplained phenomena.
Before We Begin
Phone calls from those who have passed on are far more common than one might think. Thousands have been documented in nearly every corner of the globe. Some are heartwarming, others, not so much.
It is important to keep in mind that spirits aren't magical beings than can make things happen at will. Contacting the living is not an easy task. It takes a great deal of energy that not every soul can harness. Some are able to find their voice while others use up all of their strength placing the call, leaving them unable to produce discernible sound through the static.
In the end, any contact is remarkable. For those who wait for a communication that never comes, don't despair, this is only the tip of the iceberg. They are around us all the time, whether we realize it or not.
Never To Part
In the 1960s, Simma Lieberman had fallen head-over-heels for a free spirit named Johnny. Warm and outgoing, he attracted attention like a magnet attracts steel. Everyone wanted to be close to him, but he only had eyes for Simma.
As their relationship blossomed, the pair decided to share a home in California. They spoke often of their intention to marry when the time was right. Unfortunately, fate had other plans for the young lovers.
Simma was away visiting her mother on the East Coast when she had a strange feeling that something was wrong. She and Johnny normally spoke several times a day when they were apart, but on this occasion, she hadn't been able to reach him.
Late that night, just as she was giving up hope, the phone rang. When Simma answered, she could barely hear Johnny's voice through the thick wall of static. He sounded, to her, as if he were a million miles away.
In spite of the bad reception, she managed to make out his somewhat nonsensical words: "I just want you to know that I love you and I'll never be mean to anybody again."
As his voice trailed off, a loud crack of static signaled the end of the call. The line went dead and the connection was broken. Simma held the receiver in her hand for a few seconds afterwards, mulling over Johnny's words as she listened to the droning of the dial tone.
Unable to shake the feeling that her boyfriend was in trouble, Simma tried calling him. Her apprehension continued to rise as the phone rang endlessly on the other end.
Retiring to bed, she lay awake for hours trying to make sense of his words. She had never known Johnny to be mean to any living thing. Quite the contrary. If anything, he had always been exceptionally kind; bending over backwards to put everyone at ease.
The bond between Simma and Johnny had been somewhat uncanny. They were so in tune that they often knew what the other was thinking. Their effortless ability to finish each other's sentences never failed to amaze those close to the couple. They were, simply put, made for each other.
When she awoke the next morning after a fitful night, Simma says that, for the first time since the day they met, she had no sense of Johnny. Somehow, in those moments, she knew that she had seen her fiance for the last time.
Several hours later, Johnny's mother called. Her voice broke as she informed Simma that the man who had been the center of both of their worlds had been shot while sitting in his parked car. He died instantly.
With those words, Simma's worst fears became reality. Johnny was gone, something she had already known in her gut. The only thing that kept her going was the knowledge that he had felt compelled to reach out to her, even as his own life ebbed away.
Upon learning that the murder had occurred at least five hours before Johnny's last call to her was placed, Simma came to the seemingly impossible conclusion that he had contacted her not before his passing, but after.
It is important to keep in mind that these events occurred long before the advent of cellphones. Given that his body was found slumped over the steering wheel of his car, there was no conceivable way that Johnny could have made the call prior to or at the time of the shooting.
Although she eventually moved on with her life, Simma never forgot her first love or his final act. Johnny's devotion had come as no surprise to her. He had always put her needs above his own and, apparently, still did.
An employee of a well-known cellphone carrier shared the story of an agitated customer who came in one day with a complaint he would never forget. The woman was visibly upset as she handed him her red flip phone.
When he asked her how he could help, she prefaced what she was about to say with the words, "You'll think I'm crazy." After being assured that she couldn't tell him anything he hadn't heard before, the woman laid out her story. She explained that she worked in a funeral home and that, quite simply, something connected to the business had commandeered her phone.
Her troubles began when a man contacted the establishment in need of services for a family member who had recently passed. After providing him with the information he requested, the woman had hung up and all but forgotten the conversation. It had been an interaction like any other, or so she thought.
Later that same day, she missed a call on her cellphone from someone named 'Emily.' She was a bit taken aback since she had no contacts by that name. This puzzled the clerk as well. He knew that unless a name has been previously entered into the device, there would be no way of knowing who was calling other than by the incoming number.
The customer said that she would have let the matter drop had it not been for what occurred in the ensuing days. She asserted that after that first incident, every call she received, no matter who was on the other end, was identified as coming from Emily.
She explained that, although she hadn't immediately made the connection, it later dawned on her that the man who had phoned the funeral home requesting their services just prior to the onset of the calls had said that he needed to make arrangements for Emily.
Neither the clerk nor the customer could understand why the name would appear on the woman's cellphone since the initial call had been received on a landline. Not to mention that the original caller had not been Emily, but someone acting on her behalf.
To add to her dilemma, the employee could not find any record of the call having been noted in the funeral parlor's daybook, an oversight she could not explain. As a result, there was no way to contact the man who might have held the key to solving the mystery. She added that they had not arranged for anyone named Emily to be interred in the days following the inquiry.
The skeptical clerk decided to perform a simple test. He dialed the flip phone from the store's landline. To his amazement, although the correct number appeared on the screen, the caller was identified as Emily.
No longer doubting the customer's account, but still curious, he tried again using his personal cellphone. Sure enough, his call was attributed to Emily.
As flummoxed by the events as the woman standing before him, the clerk issued her a new phone. Before sending her on her way, he handed her his card and asked to be updated on how things went. Since he never heard from her again, he assumed that getting rid of the old device had put an end to Emily's antics.
Who Emily was and why she targeted the innocent funeral home employee has never been explained. The entire episode just goes to show that the dead are under no obligation to justify their actions to the living; something they know all-too-well.
On September 8, 2008, a California commuter train carrying over two hundred passengers collided with another locomotive. Twenty-five people lost their lives that day. Among the fatalities was recently engaged father of three Charles E. Peck.
After hearing a news bulletin regarding the accident, several of Peck's family members, including his fiance Andrea, raced to the scene. No bodies had been identified at that point, giving his loved ones hope that he had made it through unscathed.
Try as they might, they could not locate Peck among the dazed survivors. As emergency crews searched tirelessly through the rubble, relatives of passengers who remained unaccounted for were advised to go home and await further instructions. At that point, no news was good news.
Over the next several hours, Peck's son, sister, stepmother and fiance all received calls from his cellphone. Relieved to find that he had survived, they eagerly answered only to be met with the crackling of static.
They pleaded with Peck to say something, but nothing could be heard over the interference originating from his end. In each instance, after a brief interval, the line would go dead.
They would immediately phone him back, but their calls would go directly to voicemail. Over the next eleven hours, a total of thirty-five calls were placed to various family members from Peck's cellphone.
On the twelfth hour, they received word that his body had been recovered from the wreckage. An autopsy would later confirm that he had died instantly upon impact.
Although many of the passengers' personal effects were subsequently found in the debris, Peck's cellphone was not among them. It has never been located, nor has it been used in the years since the accident. Investigators concluded that it had most likely been destroyed in the crash.
No one knows for certain who placed the calls during the interim when Peck's fate was still unknown. Perhaps a passerby had somehow slipped past the security detail and happened upon the device.
With nothing better to do, they then started calling everyone on a perfect stranger's contact list only to remain silent as static flooded the line. If this was indeed the case, why they abandoned the ruse moments before Peck's remains were positively identified, never to use the phone again, defies explanation.
The most widely accepted theory regarding this famed account is that Peck seized the opportunity to reach out to those he held most dear while he was still between worlds. Once his death was officially declared, the window into this realm closed for good, making further attempts at contact impossible.
Since those whose lives are taken suddenly by violence often refuse to believe that their time has come to an end, it has been speculated that Peck initially made the calls fully believing that he had survived the crash.
Finding his efforts to communicate stymied by the impenetrable interference, it is possible that the harsh reality of the situation finally set in. The fact that the last call was placed just before his body was removed from the rubble indicates that it was at that moment that he knew there would be no coming back. Only then did he surrender to fate.
Source>Most Amazing Official
A Birthday Wish Come True
West Sussex resident Penny Daniels lost her father George to a massive heart attack in 2000. One year later, her father-in-law, whom she loved like a parent, also passed away. To add to her woes, Penny's twenty-year marriage was coming to an end around the same time.
Feeling as low as she ever had, Penny was in no mood to celebrate when her forty-third birthday rolled around in March of 2001. She longed for one more hour, minute or fleeting moment with those she had lost, but knew it could never be.
After an uneventful day that was anything but joyful, she retired to her bedroom where she lay wide-awake well into the night. As she tossed and turned, the interminable silence was interrupted by the sound of the telephone ringing in the next room
Knowing that calls received in the dead of night are seldom good news, she braced herself for another wave of despair. When she answered the phone, the voice on the other end was strangely familiar. The feeling of dread that had overwhelmed her only seconds earlier vanished in an instant as the caller uttered the words: "Hello Penny."
The unmistakable sound of her father's voice echoed in her ears as Penny tearfully returned his greeting. Much to her dismay, the response she received came in the form of static that increased in intensity until the call abruptly disconnected.
Even though the communication had only lasted a few seconds, it had lifted Penny's spirits to a place they hadn't been in well over a year. The feeling of contentment stayed with her as she returned to bed. After settling in, she slept peacefully for the remainder of the night.
The following morning, the woman who had feared that happiness was a thing of the past awoke with a new perspective on life. She believed, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that her father had reached out to her from the other side when she needed him most. This knowledge finally allowed her to accept that with every ending comes a new beginning; for the living as well as those who have crossed over into the afterlife.
Source>The Daily Mail
The Angry Spirit
This last anecdote illustrates that not all communications from the other side are pleasant. Some, as you are about to see, can be downright terrifying.
Travis (pseudonym) was employed as a customer liaison in a funeral parlor when he inadvertently drew the wrath of a spiteful spirit.
As part of his duties as a service planner, Travis worked closely with grieving families. It was his responsibility to see to it that the difficult process went as smoothly as possible. His vast knowledge of all aspects of the business allowed him to offer topnotch service to those who would have otherwise been too consumed by sorrow to make the proper arrangements.
Although Travis had experienced his fair share of memorable incidents during his tenure, one stood out from the rest. It started off innocently enough on a Thursday afternoon when he met with a middle-aged couple whose nineteen-year-old son, Bobby, had been killed in a car accident.
Travis handled the distraught pair with kid gloves as he helped them select a casket and make preparations for the funeral. The parents made only one request. They wished to bury their son with a few of his personal effects.
The items were the three things he was almost never without: a hooded sweatshirt, his favorite baseball cap and his cellphone. Travis assured them that he would personally see to it that the belongings were placed inside the coffin before it was sealed. It was a promise he would soon come to regret.
Once everything was in order, Travis solemnly wished them well and saw them to the door. With Bobby's funeral scheduled for the upcoming Saturday that should have been the end of the transaction. However, things soon took an unexpected detour when he learned that someone close to the couple had taken umbrage with his meddling in the family's affairs.
Travis went home that evening and washed off his day, as he did at the end of every shift. He then spent some time relaxing in front of the television before heading off to bed.
Sometime during the night, his cellphone dinged indicating that he had received a text. When he checked the message, he saw that it was from an unfamiliar number. The content consisted of a single word in all caps, "HELLO."
His interest piqued, Travis responded with, "Hey there. Who is this?" After a few moments came the reply, "BOBBY."
Travis' mind raced. He couldn't for the life of him think of anyone he knew by that name which prompted him to inquire, "Bobby who?"
The response threw him for a loop. "YOU KNOW WHO I AM. YOU MET MY PARENTS TODAY."
Travis immediately recalled the couple with whom he had spent the better part of the afternoon. Even so, he knew that this couldn't possibly be their son for obvious reasons. He decided then and there that someone was playing a distasteful prank.
As anger welled inside him, Travis chastised the inconsiderate jokester. "This isn't funny. What happened to him was horrible. No one should be kidding around like this."
Satisfied that his lecture had put an end to the nonsense, Travis prepared to climb back into bed. As he did so, another text came through.
"SHUT YOUR ROTTEN MOUTH. YOU LET THEM RUIN MY FUNERAL. RUIN IT! IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN YOU IN THE CAR ACCIDENT NOT ME. YOU'LL HAVE AN EARLY GRAVE TOO IF IT GOES MY WAY!"
The message was so personal and hate-filled that a feeling of nausea washed over Travis. He didn't know why this person had decided to target him with their vitriol, but he thought it best to cut off any further attempts at communication by blocking their number.
The next day, a thoroughly shaken Travis shared details of the exchange with his boss, the funeral home director. The man listened intently before trying to soothe his employee's frazzled nerves by saying that it was probably just some kids having a bit of fun with him.
Travis agreed, although he felt in his heart that it wasn't true. He knew that it was unlikely that random teens would have known about his dealings with Bobby's parents. Still, going along with that possible scenario was better than the alternative; that he had been threatened by a boy who was lying in the morgue awaiting burial.
The text messages preyed on Travis' mind throughout the day. When the time came to close up for the evening, he told his supervisor that he was going to stay behind to catch up on some paperwork. His actual intentions were to test a theory he hoped would put the matter to rest, once and for all.
When he was certain he was alone in he building, he made his way down the stairs to the basement where the bodies that had not yet been interred were kept in cold storage.
As he entered the room, he was hit with the smell of rotten eggs that always hung in the air of the cloistered space. In spite of the fact that the bodies had been embalmed, the area still reeked of the pungent odor that no amount of disinfectant could mask.
After making his way to the unit that bore Bobby's name, he unlocked the latch and pulled out the coffin. Mustering all his nerve, he opened the lid, halfway expecting to find nothing inside.
To his relief, Bobby lay there lifeless, his mouth downturned in an eternal frown. Although Travis hadn't been present at the time, he was aware that Bobby's parents had dropped off their son's possessions earlier that day, all of which were now positioned by his side on the satin bedding.
Heavy makeup had been applied to the teenager's face, along with a good bit of mortician's putty, in an attempt to conceal the lacerations he had sustained in the crash. Aside from his somewhat artificial appearance, he gave the impression of someone in a deep sleep.
Travis noticed something strange right off the bat. The cellphone that rested near Bobby's midriff was turned on. He found it hard to believe that the boy's parents would have continued paying for a service that would never again be used. Whatever their reasoning, he decided to use the oversight to his advantage.
He tried to open the device in the hopes of accessing the text messages held within. His efforts were thwarted when he discovered that a passcode was required in order to gain entry. Down, but not out, he switched tactics.
Retrieving his own phone, Travis unblocked the sender of the disturbing texts. He then called the number. A few seconds later, the cellphone lying at Bobby's side vibrated as the sound of its ringtone filled the room.
Travis' heart was pounding out of his chest as he reached up to close the casket. He says that, as he was lowering the lid, he saw that the frown on the dead boy's face had transformed into a twisted grimace that was terrifying to behold.
His hands trembling, Travis resealed the coffin and beat a hasty retreat. As he was shutting off the lights, he recounted hearing noises emanating from the darkened room. Something was moving and he had no desire to find out who or what it might have been. He quickly closed the door and locked it before taking off running down the corridor.
Travis raced out of the building and into the safety of his car. As he was positioning himself behind the wheel, his cellphone went off. Someone was calling.
Gazing down at the screen, he recognized the number as the one attached to Bobby's phone. Curiosity winning over good sense, he answered the persistent ringing. "Hello," he said, both dreading and anticipating the response he knew was forthcoming.
The garbled voice on the other end made his skin crawl as it railed at him. "WHY DON'T YOU COME BACK DOWN HERE? COME DOWN AND SEE ME AGAIN! COME NOW OR I'LL COME FOR YOU!" The outburst was followed by peals of laughter.
This time, Travis snapped back. "Screw off! I don't know who you are or how you are doing this, but stop it!"
The reply was swift and to the point. "YOU KNOW EXACTLY WHO I AM. COME BACK DOWN AND PLAY WITH ME. WE CAN BE FRIENDS."
Travis had heard enough. He ended the call and again blocked the number. It was only as he drove off into the night that he realized tears were rolling down his cheeks. Knowing what he had to do, he made a beeline to the funeral director's house.
Once there, he pounded on the door until his weary employer answered. Rattled to the core, Travis recounted the entire ordeal. He stressed that Bobby's phone was inside the casket, locked and sealed. He had seen it with his own eyes and yet somehow, someone was using it to torment him.
When he was finished telling his story, Travis tendered his resignation. He then went home and spent a sleepless night reliving the unbelievable encounter in the morgue as well as its aftermath. Years later, the events that seemed to revolve around Bobby, someone Travis had not known in life, continue to haunt him.
He says that he still occasionally receives calls and texts from Bobby's phone despite the fact that the number remains blocked. As a direct result of this harrowing experience, he gave up his career in the funeral business, vowing never again to work among the dead.
When Travis shared his account online, it was met with skepticism from netizens who found it implausible that a total stranger, a dead one no less, would have a vendetta against their funeral planner. Some even went so far as to suggest that Travis had somehow been involved in the accident, a baseless accusation.
It is more likely that Bobby was simply an angry spirit who, upon having his life cut short, focused his displaced rage on the innocent party his family turned to for help. Sometimes, the reasons for hate cannot be explained, in this world or the next.