Saanich News – Camosun hauntings tracked by intrepid ghostbuster

By Vivian Moreau – Saanich News

Published: October 29, 2008 1:00 PM
Updated: October 30, 2008 8:56 AM

“Ghosts are sensitive to renovations.”

It’s the kind of comment that makes you check to see if the person is yanking your chain. But Camosun college student Ed Sum is serious. He’s talking about the outside east wall of the Young building, a 1914 three-storey brick structure said to have ghosts. The building was renovated in the 1990s, which likely annoyed some spirits, Sum says. The first-year applied communications student is a self-professed “paranormal enthusiast.” He talks about ghosts as easily as others might speak of eccentric relatives.

“Ghosts don’t perform for us,” he says about why he doesn’t try to capture apparitions on film. Instead, with electromagnetic field detector in hand, he scouts out the halls of the Young building late at night. He’s checking out stories he’s heard from former and current students as well as staff. Tales of unusual sounds and events that take place in the building that has served as a schoolhouse and a military hospital before becoming a university and college campus. Sounds of shuffling feet in the building’s clock tower and mysterious background voices in media students’ recordings are just some of the odd happenings Sum and others have run into.

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Val Mieras was a communications student in the early 1980s. She stayed on with the college and is now a spokesperson. She remembers working with classmates into the wee hours in the Young building.

“You’d hear thing, mostly creaks and bangs. We always thought the third floor was haunted,” she says. “But honestly it was probably pigeons walking on the skylight or the wind.”

Sum knows there are other explanations for readings that appear on his detector, a device said to pick up on energy fields emitted by ghosts.

“From a sceptic’s point of view, there is a window that points straight down Hillside and Shelbourne,” Sum says about background voices that show up in tape playbacks. But one voice, recorded in a late night scrum that Sum and fellow paranormal buddies took part in, defies explanation. Scouring a floor of the Young building used for surgery during the Second World War, the group paused. One of them asked what time it was. On playing the tape back later, an ethereal voice can be heard sharply breathing out the hour: “Eleven!”

Another floor once housed a morgue. Another houses a cemented-in swimming pool. It all adds up for Sum, who thinks the Young building is a logical place for ghosts to reside. That ghosts exist also seems logical, he says.

“It’s mostly just (me looking for) a validation that there is something in the next emanation of life,” he says. “I’m just trying to find out if there is something more than simply us.”

vmoreau@saanichnews.com

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VIPS Updates

Well, it’s an exciting time for us, we are talking to the media for some up and coming stuff and we are getting allot of activity from you our avid visitors and followers.

The site has undergone a little reworking because I really was not happy with the look of it before, I think its a little better organized now.

We have also added a discussion forum, It requires a separate registration to use the forums and its all still in testing, I’m not sure I even like the forum feel so feedback is appreciated. Any bugs or issues you get also send to us at info@vanisleparanormal.ca.

The recent conference was a big success so I heard but I unfortunately was not able to attend and that is why I need to hear from you. I also heard from Susanne who is setting up her own group in Victoria which we thing is fantastic and we hope we can meet and even share/collaborate on investigations, we are not the type of group to get bent out of shape over other groups in the neighborhood, we all have common interests and goals, to understand, investigate and learn.

We are also interested in hearing about some hauntings in Mission, BC as some of our friends moved out that way and we want to do an investigation when we go to visit them so if you live in Mission or know of any haunted places there let us know.

We have a group on Facebook too so if you hang out on Facebook check our the vanisleparanormal group there.

Keep em peeled,
Rob Turner – V.I.P.S.