By SCOTT COTTOS
You may not be alone.
Or, you could be.
If you wonder, Fostoria Paranormal Investigations will, too.
“We’re ghosthunters, essentially,” said the Rev. Jamie McCaskill, who with wife Jennifer founded the organization in 2010.
With Halloween approaching, Jamie McCaskill and group members Tracy Wasson and Tim Bushong discussed their work before a gathering of 11 people in a program titled “Spooky Fostoria” on Saturday at Kaubisch Memorial Public Library.
The investigators acknowledged that skeptics will always exist. And Wasson admitted that she was among them until several years ago, when she saw in her home the movement of a shadowy figure and her young son shortly thereafter calling, “Mommy, a shadow’s trying to bite me.”
She said the figure was gone when she turned on the lights.
McCaskill, a Louisiana native with 16 years of experience as a paranormal investigator, said the group’s membership has fluctuated over time, with it now standing at 10 after having been as high as 25.
Fostoria Paranormal Investigations is featured in the film “History of Fostoria, Volume III,” as it probes the Fostoria Historical Museum.
“The museum is definitely haunted,” Wasson said, noting that investigators from outside the city have detected evidence as well.
Bushong described what McCaskill called “the best part of the movie.”
“You’ll hear the words ‘over here’ and all of a sudden two guys jump,” he said.
McCaskill said the group continues to host “ghost tours” of the museum on request, though investigations are no longer conducted there.
While the museum is on North Street, the spookiest part of town is a short distance away, according to McCaskill.
“Main Street is the most haunted street we have in Fostoria,” he said.
He said paranormal activity has been detected in three locations on Main Street, with one’s content having so adversely affected investigators that “it almost destroyed the group,” McCaskill said.
The investigators said that while people may think spirits may inhabit their homes because of sounds they hear or things they see, there could very well be very normal reasons for their occurrences.
“The most famous knock in the world is a tree limb against a window,” Bushong said.
The investigators have a variety of cameras and recorders available in their efforts to locate paranormal activity, but most immediately they look to eliminate other possibilities of what may be happening at a location.
Physical evidence is the best, Bushong said.
“The best investigator in the world is one who cannot believe what the person says, yet believes in it,” he said. “They’re known as open skeptics. In other words, I’m going to come in and I will debunk your haunt. If I can say that it is not haunted, I’m not saying that you’re wrong. It still might be. But I can find reasons why it’s not.”
For some who call investigators in, the truth hurts, McCaskill said.
“They get mad because you tell them there’s nothing there,” he said.
McCaskill said the group is encouraging youngsters to become involved, with the top provision being that they maintain good grades in school.
He said the organization is available to people at no cost.
“Fostoria Paranormal Investigations is here for you,” McCaskill said. “We’re not here for fame, fortune or glory.”