The Ungentlemanly Roommate

  Built in 1883, the old St Martin’s Academy in Somersworth, NH was converted to an assisted living facility for the elderly in the late 1970’s.

By the very nature of its existence, more deaths have probably occurred in that building than any other structure in Somersworth. That in and of itself wouldn’t qualify it as a haunted site, but there is one apartment dweller in the building of 49 units who has clearly broken the rules by having a roommate.

“Robert passed away in his sleep here in my apartment and I'm the next occupant. Though I've not seen him, he has done many things in my presence,” states the present tenant, we’ll call Jack.

A bit of background about Jack: While doing undergraduate work, he was instrumental in starting a Parapsychology lab. “(We dealt mostly with ESP) But myself and a good buddy became interested in paranormal activity and at one point, we were going to become "ghost-busters" (before there was a term ghost-busters) but found out that there was "no money" for doing paranormal investigation.” Jack’s buddy went on to get a Ph.D in Clinical Psychology; and Jack, a Psy.D in Counseling.

“I'm not saying that the building is haunted but I suspect that there is strong psychic activity going on here. (I wish I had some instruments to verify that),” Jack continues.

“I've experienced such things as: objects falling or being knocked over when there was no reason for that to happen; water faucets being turned on; electronics being turned on and off; objects not being where I left them, only to be found later somewhere else (ex: I had placed a shirt on a dresser in the darkened bedroom and later when I went to retrieve it, it wasn't there, but when I turned the light on to look for it better, it appeared right where I had looked before the light was turned on).”

Indeed, the electrical phenomena has become so common, Jack leaves his television on all the time because it does no good to turn it off. It simply turns itself back on at random.

“I've lived here going on 5 years and Robert's mischief may have started (that I've noticed) the day I moved in. I had a crew of kids that were doing "community service in lieu of jail time" helping me move. Even though I gave specific instruction, things did not wind-up where I directed. (It took me 3 days before I was able to find my daily medication). I know other things also got moved.”

Jack’s housekeeper, Sandra was first to really notice Robert's presence, (turning the TV on and off and turning the water back on in the bathroom and kitchen, after she had definitely turned it off).

But when he grabbed her and she instinctively called out "Robert, stop that!” she quickly realized what was causing the phenomena.

Sandra had been Robert’s housekeeper and had been grabbed by him in the same way when he was alive. His womanizer tendencies had obviously carried through to his spiritual entity.

This wasn’t something that Jack wanted to publicize. After all, he required help with tasks associated with daily living (ADLs in industry lingo) and these were typically accomplished by female assistants. So he kept Robert’s existence to himself.

But Sandra soon got her fill of Robert’s antics and quit, leaving Jack to seek the services of a new homemaker.

Megan enthusiastically stepped in to fill Sandra’s shoes and quickly became an integral part of Jack’s care team. She would scrub Jack’s little apartment until it shined often doing little extras that meant so much to the man who had grown dependent on her services.

She was also the second woman to become aware of Robert’s presence.

One day, Jack had gone down to the cafeteria to meet a friend for lunch, leaving Megan to tidy up. Shortly after Jack left, she was at the kitchen sink doing dishes when the door opened and an image walked by. Surprised that he had returned so soon, Megan followed Jack to the bedroom door to make sure he was okay. But when she called out to him, he wasn’t there. As she turned to go back to the sink, the entity was standing there. As Megan says, “He wasn’t translucent or misty in any way. His body was a solid presence. I knew he wasn’t real, though because he didn’t respond to my voice, yet he wasn’t ‘ghostly’ in a way that is often described.”

When Jack returned from his lunch, Megan recounted her experience. Sadly, Jack replied, “Well, I see you’ve met Robert.”

Nancy was the third female to notice Robert. One day not long after Megan’s encounter she was cutting Jack’s hair in the kitchen when she noticed somebody observing them. She thought Jack had a visitor in the apartment that he hadn't mentioned. She asked, "Who’s the stranger?”

Jack jokingly replied, "Oh, that's Robert, the ghost roommate." (Nancy got the clearest look at Robert). Ironically, Nancy and Sandra are friends but they had never discussed Robert. Following that incident, Nancy mentioned it to Sandra and Sandra confessed that she too, had seen him. When asked to describe Robert physically, Nancy was able to determine that it was Robert watching her cut my hair.”

Megan continues to work for Jack and experience Robert’s presence. Sometimes, objects will move when Megan is near them and believes that it’s his way of flirting with her.

Luckily though for Robert, he hasn’t molested Megan the way he has touched and “felt up” others. As Jack likes to say jokingly, “I have a ghost for a roommate who doesn’t know how to be a gentleman.”

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One Response to The Ungentlemanly Roommate

  1. stephanie sawyer says:

    Nice Job!

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