FORESTVILLE - Janet and Duane Lyndsley did not believe in ghosts before they moved into their home at 11051 Bennett State Road.
"You hear footsteps and there's nothing there," Janet said. "Voices, muffled music, a ball bouncing, claws across the floors. One night I heard a blood-curdling scream. I've actually seen a little girl in the house. And we're next door to a cemetery also."
The Lyndsleys and their home will be featured on the SyFy network's "Haunted Collector" on Wednesday at 9 p.m. The "Haunted Collector" team, which includes paranormal investigators John Zaffis and his family, visited in March to search for artifacts that could be connected to a purported haunting. The episode is entitled "Octagon Hall/Bare Bones," in reference to the Lyndsleys' home-based business, Bare Bones Tattoo Parlour, as well as the bones that were discovered in the home on the show.
OBSERVER Photo by April Diodato
The Lyndsley home, located at 11051 Bennett State Road, will be featured on SyFy’s “Haunted Collector” on Wednesday at 9 p.m.
"I can't say what kind of bones yet," Janet said, "but (there were) bones in the wall."
The strange, inexplicable experiences began during the first week in their new home. The Lyndsleys were replacing many of the doors inside the home after learning that they contained lead. Janet said she heard doors slamming and there were no doors to be slammed.
"My middle daughter, Hannah, refused to sleep in her room because she kept saying the monster was coming to get her," Janet said.
"She wouldn't sleep in her room for a good two years. Now my son has that room and he'll talk about his friend in the closet."
Janet has seen what she describes as the spirit of a little girl in her bedroom.
"She's, I want to say, 7 or 8 years old. She's got red, curly hair and the most beautiful green eyes ever," Janet recalled. "The face was perfect. She was holding something."
At first, Janet thought it was her daughter, Hannah, now age 9.
"I'm like, 'Hannah, go to bed.' It was 2, 3 o'clock in the morning. So I laid down. I don't hear nothing. I look again and she's still there. I'm like, 'Hannah, go to bed!' And I laid down, I'm like, why is she not going to bed? As I look up, the little girl looked at me, and I'm like, 'Whoa. That's not my Hannah. I kind of laid back down, put the covers over my head, waited a few minutes, looked again and she was gone."
The alleged paranormal activity has been witnessed in every room of the house and outside as well.
"Behind the house we have a little bonfire pit, and we were sitting out there with a couple of our friends," Janet said. "They looked up towards the house and they had seen a male figure in the window."
Her husband, Duane, has also had some experiences that left him feeling uneasy in his home. One night as he exited through the tattoo parlor for a smoke, he heard a heated conversation.
"As soon as I realized what I was hearing and stopped, it had stopped," Duane said. Naturally, I looked around, thinking the radio was on, a computer, TV, something, and absolutely nothing was on. It was just a very weird, awkward feeling."
Duane still is hesitant to call himself a believer.
"I'm still skeptical but I've seen enough things in here to make me wonder," he said. "Things that are unexplainable, out of nowhere, like shadows - shadow people as I call them. You see them for a split second. It's happened on multiple occasions."
Steven Crampton of Revenant Research, a Fredonia-based duo of paranormal investigators, has been to the Lyndsley home on more than one occasion. Along with his wife, Alexis, Crampton performed an investigation during summer 2010, another on Jan. 22, 2011, and came back again to inspect the Forestville Pioneer Cemetery next door. A SyFy producer had contacted Crampton and he referred SyFy to the Lyndsleys.
"They ended up asking me if there were any cases that we had that we thought were legitimate claims of paranormal activity," Crampton said.
Revenant Research, along with Fredonia Ghosthunters, went together to do the investigation.
Crampton said they were not able to collect any tangible evidence of a haunting but the investigators had many personal experiences that left their hair standing on end.
"An arc of light appeared in the hallway - roughly about the size of a child - it was just a quick arc of light that just kind of flashed. We got up and my cameras were aimed at it, but it didn't catch it because the infrared was just kind of bleaching out the area."
Crampton also heard knocking in imitation of the "shave and a haircut" pattern and one investigator felt something brush up against her arm while holding a vigil in the main stairwell. Some particulate matter was also captured in photos taken in the cemetery, but Crampton deemed them "questionable."
In his professional opinion, is the Lyndsley home haunted?
"I don't have anything to prove it, as far as collected data," Crampton replied, "but through personal experiences, I would say yes."
Things have changed considerably since SyFy's visit, which Janet said has had a positive impact on the home.
"It has calmed down a lot," she explained. "It's back to the normal stuff you hear, like the footsteps and stuff. There's no more blood-curdling scream. There's no more walking into a room and feeling like you just walked through a heated, almost fist-fighting argument."
The Lyndsleys are looking forward to their television appearance, and described the filming as "fun."
"I'm excited and nervous," Janet said.
Send comments on this story to firstname.lastname@example.org