Students, staff share supernatural experiences

This story was originally published in the first edition of The Lion’s Tale (October 28, 2019).

As “spooky season” is upon us, it seems time to share the paranormal experiences of the residents at Oviedo High School, who have trifled with the other-wordly and lived to tell their stories.

Drama teacher Tim Carter, in his days before OHS, was actually part of a paranormal investigator team called Apalachee Paranormal located in West Virginia. As an investigator, he would go into abandoned theatres or jails, and use equipment with his team to communicate with any spirits that were there.

Once when his team was in an abandoned theatre with a jail downstairs, where they would keep prisoners, and as he ventured into the theatre by himself with a digital voice recorder

Carter asked, “If you don’t want me here, all you have to do is tell me and I’ll leave.” His digital recorder responded back with a mechanical voice, “Go.”

“I never felt like there are good spirits,” Carter said. “But, I was always very, very careful.”

There are many stories to Carter’s adventures as a paranormal investigator, but the one that started his curiosity and eventual investigation into the paranormal and supernatural was while he was in college.

The annual story he tells on Halloween day to all his classes is his first and most scarring experience.

After he and a group of friends were playing with a Ouiji board, they contacted a spirit named Fred who professed his love for Carter’s friend.

They all went to a cemetery to try and meet Fred, however soon Carter said he thought it was too dangerous, and they went back to the university. However, on the way back, Carter said the the girl whom Fred professed his love for became possessed.

“Literally, I believe it,” Carter said. “[She] got possessed, and she actually physically hurt me. She scratched me, like I was bleeding. She told me she wanted to kill me.”

He eventually left the Apalachee Paranormal team because it felt like it might be too dangerous in the long run.

“I had a wife and kids,” he said. “I didn’t want anything to follow me home.”

However, Carter isn’t the only OHS resident that has had experiences dealing with the supernatural.

While alone at night with nobody awake, freshmen Aryanna Gilooley tells how she heard a really high-pitched laugh, followed by a lower one that went on for a minute, and immediately stopped when she began to record it on her phone; while lights in her home would flicker randomly.

Gilooley, like many others, believes that the paranormal is something to be feared.

“I don’t want to die,” she said. “It’s scary.”

While living in Texas, senior Derric Esquivel said he also experienced a paranormal experience in his past home.

He described how he would frequently hear clashes, booms and banging doors coming from upstairs in their apartment complex.

Apparently, there used to be a family of three upstairs from him: a disabled wife, young daughter, and an abusive husband. The husband would frequently abuse the wife until he pushed her down so hard that she died in that very apartment.

After a particular experience where his little brother saw what he believed to be an apparition of the young daughter, Esquivel begged his mother to get a priest or to move to a different house.

So she did.

However, because of this experience, Esquivel is scared of anything horror related, and describes himself as “the scardest guy in the dark.”

“It’s happened to me, so I feel like … watching scary movies, me doing all that scary stuff would invite it back into my life,” Esquivel said. “I don’t want that.”

Are there really things that go bump in the night? Although some may have doubts, for students like Esquivel, ghost stories are more than just fiction.

“I know it was real,” he said.