Well I was born in Marietta Ohio in 1984 and two years later my family decided to move to my father’s home town of Parkersburg West Virginia. So we got a nice house in Parkersburg. Our address was 520 5th street in the business part of Parkersburg…You know… down near The Blennerhassett Hotel.
Well anyway…The first day we moved in we noticed some weird things. The home was said to have been the original location of Kimes Funeral Home which is now across the street from where that home used to be. Plus all of the bedrooms had numbers on them…as if it were a motel of some sort. There were fireplaces in every room. Just a beautiful home to grow up in. The first day we came there…my mother put her two priced life-like dolls in an old rocking chair in the back bedroom that faced the backyard. That room was to be used as storage. The next day when she came back the dolls were still in their place…but there were foot prints on the marble in front of the fireplace. My mother was stunned so she picked up one of the dolls and put its foot in the print to see if it matched and to her surprise…it matched perfectly.
That was just the beginning of the weird things to come. The owner of the home told us to never unlock the attic door. We were to never enter that room. Storage was running short, my mother decided to have my father break the lock off so we could use the attic. We thought it would be no big deal. You could see from the outside of the home that the attic window was broken so my mother decided to replace the glass. She replaced it and the next morning I woke up screaming.
My mother asked me what was wrong and I told her that Tinda was dead and that her mother was a witch and her father only had one leg and they killed her. I was only 2 years old so you can imagine how shocked my mother was to hear this. I told her to take me to the attic and I would show her. So she carried me to the attic and I went over to the window that we had replaced and she was shocked because it had been broken out. But I told her that Tinda was a little girl whose mother was a witch and her father was a bitter man with only one leg. They used to lock her in the attic and punish her and one day they pushed her out the window. My mother was terrified but brushed it off to be my wild growing imagination.
As the days went by things began to happen even more frequently. My mother had 7 children, 5 girls…and 2 boys. I was the youngest girl but I had a little brother. Well my older brother, Chad, kept seeing her. As did my sister Misty and my sister Lora. But everyone kept mistaking her for me. Everyone said she looked just like me.
Well the years went on and soon I turned 4. We kept seeing sighting of Tinda and I often played with her. The funny thing is…I can never remember seeing her. I always prayed to God “Don’t let me see her…don’t let me see her” And I remember her telling me that she didn’t want to scare me…so she always kept herself hid. As long as I couldn’t see her…I was happy!
Some time passed and Easter was right around the corner. My mother and I had gone to “The Salvation Army” located right near our house and still stands there today. We were poor then so it was a treat to get to go to that thrift store. We went in the store and found this beautiful dress and matching hat for me to wear on Easter Sunday. I was so proud of it that when I got home I went straight to my room to hang it up above my bed. That night when I went to sleep I dreamed of how much fun I would have wearing the dress in the week to come when Easter would get here. Easter was my favorite holiday and I loved dressing up for it.
The next morning when I woke up I looked up at the dress and screamed. It was covered in blood. I ran down stairs and told my mom and she thought I had done it but I swore to her that I didn’t. She tried washing it and washing it but it wouldn’t come out.
And one night my brother Chad was cleaning his room while I was downstairs helping mom bake a cake like I usually did. According to Chad, who he thought was me came to his room stood in his doorway and just stood there he said “April, you want to help me clean my room?” He turned his head and then looked back and “I” wasn’t there. He thought to himself, “If you didn’t want to help me all you have to do is say no”!
He couldn’t find me in my bedroom so he went downstairs to find me in the kitchen with mom. He looked at me and said “April how did you change your clothes so quickly?” And mom said “Chad she’s been here all night. She hasn’t changed her clothes”. See the “April” that he thought he had seen had a long white dress on. While I had my pink nightgown on, he then realized it was Tinda.
Tinda continued to play tricks like this on everyone in my family, even my own mother. My mom was washing dishes late one night and she heard me crying in the hall she walked out there to give me a hug and she walked right through “me”. Yet again it was Tinda.
Every night as I was lying in bed trying to fall asleep I could hear basketballs bouncing in the attic, or the toilet flush. This would go on all night long, which made me an insomniac at a very young age. Still to this day I have trouble sleeping.
My father was a terrible man who thought teaching a good lesson was beating or scaring his children. He once locked me in the attic. For some reason I was terrified. Terrified of the thought of Tinda’s mom and dad being up there with me.
Only a few occasions did I see figures of Tinda’s mother and father. Once when I was just a baby…when we first moved into the house, my sister Bobbie was babysitting me. And I remember this like it was yesterday. I was in my crib in my mom’s room which was downstairs while she was watching TV in the living room which was obviously the place where funerals were held when it was Kimes funeral home because of the lavish glass doors that slid closed. All the sudden I remember hearing a cackle Yes a cackle. Like you would imagine a witch would do. My sister Bobbie heard it too and ran in there as I had started screaming.
The home was a beautiful place to grow up, but also a very scary place. After 8 years living in that house we moved to Reedy West Virginia. A small town with a population of 140. It was a big change but a big relief. From time to time my mother would make trips back to Parkersburg to see who lived in the home. Once there was a family with children and all my mom asked if they had seen or heard anything and they said “It’s funny you ask that My son was just telling me today about the basketballs bouncing in the attic while he was trying to go to sleep”. My mom smiled because she knew Tinda hadn’t left!
More years passed and people stopped moving into the house. It had become very old. It became outdated and too small for a family who wanted fireplaces in every room. Without us knowing it, they started to tear down the house. One night my mother had a dream that Tinda came to her crying and said “I have nowhere to live I have nowhere to go”. Mom asked her why and she just kept repeating “I have nowhere to live I have nowhere to go”. We were in the works of moving so mom said “You can live with us we’re moving to Ripley”. She woke up sad and in tears. She decided to go to Parkersburg because she knew something was wrong. As she drove past our old house on 520 5th Street in Parkersburg, West Virginia she saw that they were tearing it down to build a shelter for homeless or abuse children.
Fast forward to today February 12, 2003 and the shelter still stands. Our home is gone. I believe Tinda lives with us now in Ripley West Virginia. But every night as I go to sleep I pray “Please God don’t let me see any ghosts.” And she grants my wish and hides her identity.
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