Friday, February 5, 2016

GUEST THRILLER AUTHOR: DONALD ALLEN KIRCH


                          

     Donald Allen Kirch is a prolific author of fantasy, horror novels and short stories, whose many works include: Reich, The Lurker War, The Silent Pulpit, and more recently, The Seventh Second, A Stake in Murder, and "THROUGH A GLASS DARKLY" voted FIRST PLACE in the category "Best Paranormal Horror / Suspense Thriller" by the Paranormal Romance Guild. Donald's books can be found up on Amazon and Kindle.


http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1518637612?keywords=donald%20allen%20kirch&quid=1454690422&ref_ =sr_1_1_twi_pap_2&s=books&sr=1-1  

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     I was a guest on Donald paranormal radio show: Night Terrors, March 2014, where we had a great discussion about my then debut book Estate of Horror.  I want to thank him for being my Guest Blogger this week and sharing his terrifying true story of his investigation at the notoriously haunted Sally House!


The Skepticism of "The Haunt."
by
Donald Allen Kirch

      
      "I have been attacked by a ghost."
       When a person experiences anything related to the paranormal and has the courage to admit it - especially the above mentioned comment - that person is usually looked upon in a rather odd way.  Eyes began to squint.  Throats nervously clear.  If the person stating such a claim is at a gathering, we wonder if "said" person can be deemed safe enough to be allowed around sharp objects or children.  We live in dark times.  Our culture is bent on money-making, and hoping that hard work will keep us all from the horrific realities of a retirement home.  Magic, as we understood the term as children, is gone.  It just isn't profitable.
     That was my personal mind-set in 2004 -the year that I WAS attacked by a ghost.
     Back in 2004, I knew a group of individuals who wished to get together and form a production company.  Their goal was to create low budget documentaries which they hoped to feature on an online website.They all seemed passionate and willing enough to do the incredible task ahead so I joined them as a creative consultant. It was a slow summer, and, frankly, I had nothing better to do. While at one board meeting, blowing spit bubbles of boredom, someone suggested that we do a documentary on haunted houses.
       Suddenly, my ears perked up and my spit bubbles ran dry!
       As a child, I loved to watch the TV series In Search Of…  Some of their best episodes were on the subjects of ghosts, haunted houses, and curses - I have a giant sweet tooth for this stuff and knew the suggestion was gold.  I also remember one of the researchers from that television series.  His name was Hans Holzer.
       Hans Holzer had more degrees than a thermometer.  He specialized in paranormal studies and was quite intelligent and timid-looking.  I watched this guy on TV, carrying an old-fashioned cassette recorder, and a cheesy microphone, claiming to be chasing ghosts.  And, as a child, I bought it!  I ate it up like candy!  He struck an everlasting and positive cord in my early memory.
       Having explained to the entire crew that I knew something of the paranormal, I suggested we scope out Atchison, Kansas - not too far from Kansas City, MO where we all lived.  Atchison, Kansas was once an important hub in the American Railroad Empire, it was the starting place of the Atchison, Topeka, & Santa Fe Railroad, Companies, it was also the hometown of Amelia Earhart, the famous female aviator.  Also, this small Kansas town held yet another important honor - it is considered the Most Haunted Town in Kansas.
       We agreed.  Atchison would be the setting of our documentary.
       Several members of the crew started to investigate, contact, and scout out the town.  While doing this, we came across some incredible luck - the owner of the Sallie House was going to allow us the opportunity to stay two weekends, alone, within the residence.  And, he was going to do it for free!
     The Sallie House is a two-story post Civil War home built in the 1890's and had been featured on the Fox TV series Sightings and the Learning Channel's documentary Haunted Town. 

SALLY HOUSE
     In the late Nineteenth Century the home was owned by a medical practitioner who had also been the Mayor of Atchison.  As was the practice of the time he had live-in servants.  One was an attractive black woman whose name has been lost with time.  In short, she and the doctor had an affair, and from that affair Sallie was born.
     Sallie lived in the house, and she, her origins, and her mother's affair were closely guarded secrets.  It would not have served the doctor any, for those amongst him, or his peers to learn that he had fathered a black child.  Again, this was not an enlightened time and color was an important gage upon the social ladder.
     In any case, Sallie ended up having trouble with her appendix.
     As the story goes Sallie's father had a drinking problem.  And, upon the night in question, the man had been deep within his cups.  Solidly drunk, the man inadvertently allowed his daughter to die upon the operating table and was never held responsible for the act. In the eyes of the times it was just the death of another servant's child.
           


    Sallie, according to legend, was buried in a nameless grave - or - within the confines of the doctor's basement.  Either fact is impossible to prove.  As with Sallie's mother, her fate has faded with history.  To find a grave would be quite impossible.  

  Note: Several psychics have claimed that Sallie has a grave, and that site has been examined, but to no apparent conclusion.
     Upon her death, Sallie declared war on all male occupants of her house.
      In August of 2004, we ventured into this house never fully seeing the danger we were putting ourselves into.
      Now, before this episode, I had always been a believer in the afterlife.  However, time, taking her course upon an open mind and an adult heart I became a skeptic.  I still believed, mind you, but I also believed in the human ability to create a fraud.  One of my favorite quotes is, "If it's put on a T-shirt, and makes money, then it will never go away."  Two great examples: Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster.  Next to Elvis…the biggest tourist traps in the world!
      So, as a skeptic, I was chosen as a member of the crew.
      The owner of the Sallie House informed us that he was preparing the home for a new client.The house was a rental and in-between residents.  So,we would not be held back by manners or film restrictions.  In short, we had full reign.
      Upon our entrance, things turned weird.  A cameraman, and a non-believer, instantly started to become sick.  Vomiting several times, he left.  The man never again set foot in the house.
     Instantly, our digital camera started to have problems.  A photographer's flash wouldn't work and batteries drained like there would be no tomorrow.  All our hard work was starting to fail at each and every corner.
     Luckily, our two backup cameras still worked.
     Heading down into the home's basement we decided to do some filming there.
     The basement of the Sallie House is quite ordinary.  It consists of a long wooden staircase, furnace, and lovely riverbed rock walls.
      
Sally House Basement  
      There was also something else.
      A black pentagram                

                                     

     Someone, we do not know who, had sketched out a black pentagram upon the floor directly in front of the furnace. This, I have to say, freaked me out.
      One of the cameramen decided to try our new night vision camera filter.
      We turned off the lights.
      The cameraman started his filming.
      A scream was heard.
      Flipping the basement lights back on we discovered that one of our team was attacked by a brick.  In point of fact, there are no bricks in the basement of the Sallie House, other than those found in the chimney.  As mentioned, the walls are constructed from riverbed rock.  At first, we all took the attack as a kind of April Fool's joke.  So, the lights went out again, and the bricks continued to fly.  All in all, six.  Each victim hit was a male within our group.  I had been personally grazed by a brick that hit me in my lower back.
      As we continued our investigations, I was taking notes in the hallway on the second floor between the bathroom and nursery. I had come to the conclusion, while in the basement, that there was something genuine about this haunting and was writing that in my notes, when, upon heading down the main staircase I felt something.
      As I remember, I felt a small pair of hands - like those of a child - taking hold of my ankles and a rather adult pair of hands grabbing me at the shoulders.
     My pen stopped in mid-sentence.
     My eyes opened quite wide.
     My world changed.
     All at once, the child's hands pulled my feet off the steps and the adult hands upon my shoulders pushed.  If it had not been for my instant reaction to place my right hand against the staircase wall and my left upon the railing I'm sure that I could have fallen down the stairs, breaking my neck.  The staircase is indeed long and deep enough to cause serious energy.
      I am not one for delusional fantasies - I create too many on my own and need little help.
      This…happened.
      I was attacked.
      And, until the day I pass, I will state this for the record.
      There was something within the confines of the small Kansas house that did not like or want us there.  If it is the child ghost known as Sallie she got her wish.  Upon being attacked, and having felt a level of personal horror I have never experienced before, I left.  I had people in our group tell me, later, that it appeared that I had been lifted from the stairs and thrown from my footing.  I thank God, that I had the presence of mind - or instinct, at least - to take some kind of action.
     To the "skeptic" in all of you: Like it or not, GHOSTS DO EXIST.  It's only after we return from our personal experiences that we learn to live with it. 














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