; Phantoms and Monsters: Pulse of the Paranormal

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Elevator Incident

I received the following account last evening. It is definitely one of the oddest submissions I have had the pleasure to read:

Hi Lon,

I discovered the Mysterious Universe podcast a few weeks ago and through that your blog. After hearing story after story of strange encounters with strange men dressed in black suits, I wanted to tell a story from my childhood that to this day I have been unable to explain. This took place in 2001 when I was 8 years old.

It was summer and I was on a field trip with my town's community center's daycare program. We were at the New York State Museum in Albany, NY. I was in a group with maybe 2 or 3 other kids and one of the daycare workers for a chaperone. We got there in the morning and were told we could roam around the museum with our group until either 12 or 1 when we had to meet back up with everyone for lunch on the 3rd floor.

Our group walked around, looking at all the exhibits and after a while, we realized we had lost track of time. We only had a few minutes to get up to the 3rd floor for lunch and attendance and we were on the other side of the museum from where the elevators are. We hurried quickly to the lobby and hopped into an elevator. Out of breath from the near sprint we had done to the lobby, our group piled into the elevator, we hit the 3rd floor button, and my chaperone said we had made it in time and that we still had a minute or so to spare. Then as the doors were closing, an extremely well-dressed man walked into the elevator. He was wearing black shoes, a black suit with a white dress shirt, black tie, black leather gloves, and a black fedora, and was carrying a black leather briefcase. At the time I thought nothing of it, but I've always looked back at this and thought this was very odd as it was summer and he was dressed for the dead of winter.

As the man got on, I noticed that he kept his head down, almost as though he didn't want us to see his face. He quickly turned around, only then lifting his head. He just stood there with his back to us, and I don't remember ever seeing him select a floor. The elevator doors closed and this eerie feeling seemed to be emanating from the man in black. We had left the lobby on the first floor and were going up the third floor, so the ride should have been maybe 10 or 20 seconds at most. The elevator's display showed we had arrived at the third floor, but the elevator didn't stop. the numbers just kept climbing, and we were definitely still moving. (I want to preface this by saying those elevators in the lobby only have access to 4 floors, and to my knowledge the museum only has 4 above ground floors. I'll talk more about that at the end.) At this point, it had been well over a minute since the elevator started moving and the numbers on the display continued to climb; as did the elevator. That eerie feeling that had been seemingly emanating from this man was getting more intense and the air in the elevator was beginning to get extremely heavy, this seemed to get more and more noticeable as we continued to go up. The higher the elevator climbed, the feeling turned from eerie to foreboding. I remember getting the feeling you get in the pit of your stomach when you know something bad is going to happen. Something definitely wasn't right, the display was saying we had passed the 50th floor and we were still climbing.

At this point it had been around 5 minutes in the elevator. The atmosphere in the elevator had gotten almost unbearable. This heavy, ominous feeling was something I've never experienced since. The closest thing I can compare it to is that feeling you get when you walk down a dark hallway after watching a horror movie, and even that doesn't begin to describe this. Suddenly, the elevator stops. There's a sudden shift in the atmosphere of the elevator. It went from this foreboding feeling to a feeling of impending doom. Then I remember an almost panic when I thought about was on the other side of those doors. I was telling myself over and over again that the buttons on the elevator don't go past the 4th floor, so there aren't any floors beyond that, so whatever on the other side of those doors can't possibly exist. This whole experience can't possibly have happened, and when the doors open I'll see all my friends from the other groups eating lunch and everything will be okay. But that's not what happened.

And this is where things have always gotten fuzzy for me. I remember getting on the elevator with my group, the man walking in, and the elevator going up. But I can't remember my group being in the elevator after a certain point. I know it was at least five minutes from the time we entered the elevator before it stopped, and yet I can't tell you how much time passed between when the elevator stopped and when the doors opened. I can remember looking at the display to see what floor we were on, but can't remember what it said. I remember being frozen there, with no sound or movement whatsoever. I remember feeling like if those doors opened, something bad was going to happen, to the point where I remember panicking inside my head, pretending that none of this wasn't happening. But every time I opened my eyes that sinister man was still standing there, as still as a statue.

And then all of a sudden, the man who was responsible for all of this, who had not moved a single muscle since the elevator doors closed, drops his briefcase. Not even a second after the briefcase hit the ground, the doors of the elevator opened. And yet I can't remember what was beyond those doors. I have tried for the last 14 years to remember and have never been able to see it. I just remember it being white and bright. The man then calmly picked up his briefcase, tipped his fedora, almost as to bid us goodbye, and walked off the elevator. I then remember the doors closing and that ominous feeling being gone, and in an instant we were on the 3rd floor and the doors popped open.

Only then do I remember seeing the rest of my group on the elevator. All of them looking as terrified as I did, especially our chaperone. Looking out, I saw the rest of the kids and chaperones from the other groups. We walked out of the elevator, and had been expecting to be extremely late for lunch, but we had made it on time. Which is impossible, because we had initially made it to the elevator a minute or so before lunch started, and that encounter on the elevator had lasted at least five or ten minutes. I remember our chaperone pulling the other adults aside and I assume told them what had happened to us on that elevator. I remember sitting at the table with my friends eating a pizza Lunchable and the kids from my group and I sharing the story of what had just happened, no one believing us. I remember the chaperone I had avoiding the subject for the rest of the day, and the other kids in my group seemed to have dropped it as well.

I remember that I told my mom what had happened and I've always felt as though she didn't believe me. But before writing this, I wanted to make sure that really did happen since I was so young and it had been well over a decade since this happened, and that it wasn't something my mind made up over the years or maybe just a very vivid dream. So I asked my mom if she remembered me telling her about this, and she said she did. She remembers picking me up from the community center and the second we got into the car I had told her all about the man in black and the elevator going up all these floors and even that he had dropped his briefcase. She said she also remembers me telling her that he had said something to me, though she doesn't remember what, and I don't have any memory of him saying anything.

So there is my story. 14 years later, I still have absolutely no clue who that man was, where the elevator took us, what was beyond the doors where the man walked off, or anything that happened in that elevator. I just know that it happened. I have no idea how long we were in that elevator, it could have been minutes or even hours, but what I do know is that time seems to have been separate from our reality, since no time had actually passed when we got to the third floor. Hopefully you have heard something similar or at least have an idea what happened. I've gone through every explanation I can think of and none of them make sense. From not remembering correctly what elevator we got on, and perhaps getting in one somewhere else, but that's impossible for reasons I've listed in the paragraph below this. I've thought maybe it was a really vivid dream, but my mom remembers me telling her right after picking me up from daycare, the day of the field trip. I've even considered a gas leak in the elevator causing us to hallucinate.The one thought that's always been in the back of my mind has been that we got onto the elevator and took a ride through another dimension.

Just a little side note, I had a job with a catering company in the Albany area last Summer and one of the most common venues we catered at was the New York State Museum. Over that summer, I rode probably every public elevator in that building, and even a cargo elevator they have, and not a single one I rode on had any buttons beyond the 4th floor.


The Real Men In Black: Evidence, Famous Cases, and True Stories of These Mysterious Men and their Connection to UFO Phenomena

Visitors From Lanulos: My Contact With Indrid Cold [Large Format Illustrated]

Mystery of the Men in Black: The UFO Silencers

When Men in Black Attack: The Strange Case of Albert K. Bender