Saturday, November 21, 2009

Influenza Outbreak Victim Haunts Canadian College Building

weeklyalbertan - All good haunted house stories start off with a dark and sinister past and the tale of three SAIT (Southern Alberta Institute of Technology) buildings is no exception.

The most popular story is the haunting of Heritage Hall. Most people are aware that the historic building is haunted but few know the whole story.

During an early 20th century influenza outbreak, Heritage Hall was converted into a make shift hospital for the infected. A young nurse who worked and lived in the hospital was one of the last victims of the outbreak. She ended up passing away in the very hospital where she had saved so many lives.

Today there have been reports that she still wanders the halls late at night, students have heard locked doors opening and closing during late night study sessions. Construction workers claimed tool boxes had been moved during recent renovations, and it is even rumored that SAIT’s executives have encountered paranormal activity.

“I have spent a lot of late nights walking through Heritage Hall,” said SAITSA Safe Walk volunteer and VP Student Life Alyssa Athanasopolous. “Often when I’m walking through Heritage Hall alone at night I feel a gust of air as if someone has just walked past me.”

The original residence building Owasina Hall, that’s now condemned, is believed to hold some secrets of its own. Students have claimed to hear screams coming from within the building, ghostly figures appearing in the windows, and lights coming from empty hallways.

“My bedroom window faces directly at Owasina Hall and some nights it looks like there are people in the building,” said Christine Meir, an East Hall resident. “Sometimes even in this building we hear heavy breathing, scratching and strange knocks.”

There are whisperings around campus that the strange happenings in the residence buildings are caused by a former SAIT student who took his own life while living in Owasina Hall.

The John Ware building may have also been the scene of a great tragedy. Cleaning staff of the Highwood Restaurant have told stories of a ghost that haunts the building. A construction worker supposedly died during a renovation to the building many years ago. At night after the restaurant is closed cleaning staff have heard the sounds of footsteps in the hallway and the hammering of nails.

None of these ghosts could not be reached for comment


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