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CASE REVIEW – UWMC RESIDENCY HALL – WAUSAU, WISCONSIN

 

SYNOPSIS

            The WPRC (Wisconsin Paranormal Research Center) was contacted by Dan McCollum a counselor with the UWMC in Wausau, Wisconsin concerning a reported sighting of a “Blue Cowboy” in the UWMC Marathon Hall Apartments.  Rick Hendricks of the WPRC contacted Todd Roll with the WPRS (Wausau Paranormal Research Society) regarding the alleged paranormal activity and asked if we would be interested in handling this case as it is in our immediate area.  WPRS and WPRC decided to perform a joint investigation of the site.  The investigation occurred on July 26th, 2002 from 6:30 PM to 3:00 AM.

 

PARANORMAL ACTIVITY THAT WAS REPORTED

            In a recorded interview session conducted on July 26th, 2002 at 7:30pm in the lobby of the UWMC Residency Hall, resident worker, Anna Landenberger relayed the following possible paranormal activity to investigators Roll, Blaschka, Ludwig, Morris and Hendricks which was noted and recorded for investigation purposes.

1.      Ghostly apparition of two men wearing cowboy hats often seen with a blue haze around the apparitions.  Various people have seen the apparitions between the hours of 2:00 AM and 3:00 AM.  Staff has nicknamed them the “Blue Cowboys”

2.      Doors have been reported to open and close without the aid of human hands.

3.      Blue Cowboys haunt room #308 and #302.  They have been seen coming out of the closet in #308.

4.      Knocking noise has been heard coming from room #308 when it is not occupied by anyone.

5.      Noises of furniture being moved around in room #308 when no one is present.  Upon inspecting the room furniture was disturbed.

6.      VCR and Television turns off and on at various times without the aid of human hands in room #318.

7.      Lights flicker on and off in room #318 during and after the use of a Ouija board.

8.      Feelings of a presence in the laundry room area located in the basement.

9.      Room #222 has been noted to have a death in it around 1997.

10.  Blue Cowboys have been seen in third floor north hallway.

 

INVESTIGATION RESULTS

            The investigation of the UWMC Residency Hall took place on July 26th, 2002. Investigator Blaschka, Roll, Morris and Ludwig were present. Also present was Rick Hendricks from the WPRC (Wisconsin Paranormal Research Center).  During the investigation several rolls of high-speed black/white and color film was shot in all areas of the building.  Few anomalies were captured on film. Most of the anomalies can be explained as light refraction or dust particles in the air.  Two (2) hours of “night shot” video was taken in room #308 where the Blue Cowboy has been seen. This video was reviewed via CCTV on the first floor of the building.  Also (2) hours of “night shot” video was recorded in the third floor north hallway where the previously mentioned apparition has also been seen.  Both recording sessions took place between the hours of 12:30 AM and 2:30 AM.  No significant anomalies were noted during filming or after review.  Investigator Blaschka recorded 120 minutes of EVP, (Electronic Voice Phenomena) in room #222 where a previous death had occurred around 1997.  Upon review no anomalous noises where noted.  Several temperature readings were obtained and all seemed to be within normal ranges.  The residency hall was scanned with EMF meters and no unusual readings were found.  Also the structure was scanned with a Geiger counter.  The basement readings were .03 rads and the upstairs living areas averaged about .03 rads.  In conclusion WPRS and WPRC did not find any supporting evidence to ascertain whether the UWMC Marathon Hall is truly experiencing genuine paranormal activity. While it is noted that several credible witnesses have experienced what they believe to be paranormal activity none of our instruments or observations found any strong evidence of such.  It is possible that we may revisit the site in the future.         

 

UPDATED 05/20/06

            On May 20, 2006 the Wausau Paranormal Research Society was once again given access to the University of Wisconsin Marathon Campus Dorms.  Further activity has been reported during the past four years by several students housed in the dormitories.  The first of these experiences were relayed to WPRS Lead Investigator Blaschka during a seminar given at the dorms in October 2005.  Blaschka spoke with our contact Trent Fredericksen to gain permission to reinvestigate the site.  Below is a list of additional activity that has occurred during the past four years.  All of which was verbally relayed to us by several UWMC students.

FURTHER PARANORMAL ACTIVITY THAT WAS REPORTED

1. A suicide was committed in room #122 about two years ago.  The apparition of that person has been seen by students in the 1st floor men’s bathroom.

2. An apparition of a very thin young male with blonde hair has been seen in room #108.  Witnesses describe the apparition as having very messed up, freaky looking hair.

3. Glimpses out of the corner of ones eye have been seen on the south end of the second floor hallway.

4. Bathrooms by coed lounge and the North laundry room have feelings of apprehension and anxiety.

5. Door to room #312 is often found closed when left open.

6.  VCR’s and Televisions turn off and on at various times without the aid of human hands.

 

REINVESTIGATION RESULTS

            The reinvestigation of the UWMC Dorms took place on 5/20/06 starting at approximately 6:10PM.  Investigators Blaschka, Renel, J.Geurink and Knight were present.  During the investigation several rolls of high-speed color film was used with photographs taken primarily on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd floors of the dorm.  A few anomalous images were noted but are most likely due to light refraction and not paranormal in nature.  Several sessions of EVP was conducted in various rooms by Renel and Geurink with room #318 and the 3rd floor women’s restroom being a source of focus. Upon review of the tapes no anomalous noises where noted.  Several temperature readings were obtained throughout all three floors.  The third floor ranged between 68 to 74 degrees, the second floor ranged between 68 to 75 degrees and the first floor ranged between 69 to 73 degrees Fahrenheit all being within normal range.  The resident halls and quarters were scanned with EMF meters.  Several unexplainable readings were found.  One reading of 4.5mg was recorded in room #230.  Another reading of 1.6mg was obtained in the North hallway of the third floor.  Several readings of 2.4mg - 3.0mg were obtained in room #318 and a reading of .08 – 2.2mg was captured in the third floor woman’s bathroom.   All of these readings were captured several times and seemingly dissipated.  Readings such as these are sometimes associated with paranormal activity but alone do not constitute a haunting.  One personal observation was made during our vigil.  Investigators heard what sounded like a door close while working on the third floor.  No students were housed in this area during our investigation and no students were seen going up to the third floor by investigators on the second floor during that time.  Upon inspection no doors were found closed that had been left open prior.  The door to room #312 was left open during our investigation to see if it would be found closed later.  The door was not found closed during the investigation.  Investigator Blaschka tested the door by leaving it open along with windows in the room.  During this experiment wind current pulled the door shut at times.  This reasonable suggests that this activity reported to us is not paranormal.  In conclusion the WPRS did not find any supporting evidence on this second visit to ascertain whether the UWMC Dormitory is truly haunted. While it is noted that several credible witnesses have experienced what they believe to be paranormal activity over the past several years we did not find any strong evidence to support that claim. It is unlikely that we will revisit this site unless more significant activity occurs in the future.  

Original 2002 Case File*

 

    *Any use or reproduction of this documentation is prohibited without the sole permission of Shawn Blaschka and the WPRS.