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Nursing Home Ghost Story

The following is strongly based upon a real ghost experience inside a nursing home. All names have been changed to protect the witnesses.

Hospitals and Nursing Home s are locations of legend in the paranormal. So many experiences, never talked about due to sensitivity to the passed. It’s rare to get a detailed story. This is one of those stories…

Working the Night Shift

Nobody likes to talk about it!  I worked in a nursing home a few years back.  Heard the stories from my coworkers.  They swore things moved around, or they saw movement from the corner of their eyes, but there was nothing there.

I’m not skeptical.  Not sure how I felt after hearing the stories.  Maybe it was a defense mechanism.  You know, better to disbelieve and not listen than admit something could happen to me.

Becoming a Believer

And then it did!  On a normal night and I was putting together some of the resident charts on my computer.  There was a loud smack from the hallway. 

Was about to call out to the new nurse.  Ready to say, “Hey Debby, go check that out, rookie.”  But only felt dread in the silence when realizing Debby wasn’t there.  I was the only nurse on the wing.

Took a deep breath, and then walked to where, I thought, the noise came from. 

SMACK!  As it happened, I stopped mid-step.  Not too manly to admit I jumped… just a little bit. 

The noise came from the room to my right.  I looked in to see a vacant space.  Remembering the resident had passed away only yesterday.  I wasn’t working that night.  But had heard the family was coming back for his possessions in a day or two. 

A bookshelf remained, attached to the far wall.  Mr. Johnson was a real book lover.  I remember commenting on it once.  He had the most amazing answer,

“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies . . . The man who never reads lives only one.” 

George RR Martin

Found out later he plagiarized George RR Martin.  Guy who wrote Game of Thrones.  Sadly, not the last season.  Still, I got a kick out of it.

His impressive collection remained on the shelves, except two books.  That’s when I saw them in front of the bookcase… on the floor.

My first thought was, ‘…they were on the edge.  Some vibration knocked them over.  Ya, that’s it… that must be it.”  Funny how we try to rationalize strange things. 

But it calmed me.  I walked in, picked them up and pushed them into the open spots on the shelf.  Took a little effort, but they squeezed in.  I was content with a job well done. 


Then turned to go.  SMACK!  SMACK!  Two in a row, right behind me.  I jumped, maybe hitting the ceiling, I don’t know.  Ran to the door, while repeating the same word under my breath… “nope, nope, nope…”

Outside the door in the safety of the hallway, I spun and saw what my mind already expected.  The same two books!  On the ground again.

Took a deep breath, forcing my mind to be quiet, and with it came some calm.  Carefully walking back in and putting the books on the shelf.  Slowly turning to go. 

Yes, I did exactly what you’re thinking.  I stuck my fingers in my ears like a child.  Ya, I’m not proud of it… but you’d do the same! 

Then I saw it.  The corner of the eye movement other nurses talked about.  Spun to see something. 

It was only for a second, and then gone.  It was a very dim shadow outlined directly in front of the bookcase. 

I heard the smacks again as I rushed out of the room, and back to the nursing station.  At this point not caring if the entire bookcase fell down.

He’s Not the Only One

Debby was back.  I told her what had happened.  Expecting empathy, or fear, but she laughed!  “Sure buddy…”

I told her, “Fine then.  You go back and pick up the books!”  She came back seconds later.  Quiet, looking white and sickly. 

I didn’t want to know, but still asked, “What happened?”

She said, “I didn’t go in.  There was a shadow.  In the corner.  It moved!”  She had closed the door and quickly came back. 

Hours passed and the sun came.  We returned to the room.  I stepped up, Debby standing behind me.  “Doubt it’s going to attack us.  Silly!”  But I opened the door slowly, like it might.  Nothing.  Room was empty.

I picked up the books, put them back, and thanked Mr. Johnson for being such a good resident.  And asked him, “You cool with not terrifying us again?”  The room didn’t answer. 

But I do think he heard me.  All my experiences in that room of the nursing home have been blissfully quiet since.  

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