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Here is a personal account of something odd by your's truly, the Webmaster, Matthew Didier...

My family moved from a North York home to this small house in Leaside when I was 15. Prior to our purchase, the house had been owned by an insurance company that used it as a temporary home for employees that it recruited from overseas before they found themselves a new and permanent residence. Who owned it before this, I have no idea.

I made a fast friend who lived down the street and after a time, invited him for a "sleepover" at the new house. My parents banished us to the basement, for fear of being kept awake by two Atari playing teenagers. After a time, we couldn't stand the atmosphere of the basement (despite the video game) and decided to quietly move upstairs to my bedroom for the night. After we got in to the room and decided on sleeping locations, my new friend asked, "What do you think made us come upstairs?" I replied, "Probably the ghost."

At that moment, all the books on a bottom bookshelf in my new bedroom fell to the floor one by one.

As opposed to being frightened, we laughed and slept somewhat soundly for the rest of the night. Nothing other than the usual "old house" noises happened after that -- until the death of my father. He died quickly of a heart attack in the master bedroom on an evening close to Christmas.

At first, nothing strange happened (other than the usual family trauma that occurs with such an event) but then things became odd. Firstly, I had a niece who was only a toddler at the time of his death and we felt, although she could talk, there wasn't any need to explain what was going on at the time. She would occasionally say "I see Dad!" (this is what she called her grandfather) and point at the main stairway or she would say "Dad's sitting over there..." and point at an empty chair in the living room.

Other unusual events happened near this time, such as a radio in his workshop (which did not have a timer) turning on and off on its own. Power tools would also be heard, but upon investigation would be found simply lying idle, the sound stopping abruptly when someone entered the workshop. The most interesting event occurred in front of a friend of mine from the militia. We were both "sneaking a smoke" (having a cigarette) in my bedroom on the second floor of the house during a particularly cold April day. Paranoid of being discovered by my mother, we had the windows open in the bedroom but the door to the hall firmly closed. As we watched, the doorknob turned, the door opened a crack and then swung open full force but did not hit the wall behind it. It then closed about half way, opened wide again, slammed shut and was pulled firmly closed so that the doorknob and lock latched. The one problem with this door issue was that there was no one near the door and no one else was inside the house at the time. My friend immediately became (understandbly) frightened. "What was that?" he asked.

"If my father was here," I answered, "he would have opened the door to see who was in the room and why the door was open. He would have seen both us smoking (he was a non-smoker) and the windows open letting in the cold. He would have held onto the doorknob so as not to damage the paint behind the door, swung it open fast to yell at me, closed it halfway with a you're lucky your mother didn't see this, then slammed the door on us and pulled it shut in order to keep the smoke and cold air in." My friend immediately stated, "No, it had to be the wind."

I pointed out that this was unlikely, as the wind was blowing into the room and not the other way round. The wind would therefore only held the door shut. Also, no other windows or doors were open in the house. Needless to say, he requested that we move from my room to another area of the house. We picked up some records and tried to carry my collection of vinyl (yes, it was that long ago) and some cassettes downstairs. Since we couldn't manage it all in one trip, we left a stack of cassette tapes at the top of the main stairs and moved the rest down to my family room. We actually never made it to where my parents' stereo was, but instead ended up having a quiet tea in the kitchen and discussing what might have just occurred. As we were talking, a loud CLACK sounded from near the foot of the stairs. We found, stacked neatly at the bottom of the stairs, the cassettes we had left at the top.

At first, my friend blamed my cat, but I pointed out to him that it was an "L-shaped" staircase and that the only way my cat could have possibly done it was if he had picked up the stack of tapes in his mouth and carried them to the bottom of the stairs, whereupon he would then have had to drop them, in good order, at the landing. Also, the cat's jaw would have had to extend about four inches in order to carry such a load.

There were other odd occurrences in the home, but most are private or were only witnessed by family, so I won't retell them here. Whenever I get the chance, I drive by the house and have noticed that it did go up for sale quite often until about four years ago. I guess whatever is present in the house found an owner that it likes, or the owners simply aren't aware. I have never had the gumption to ask the present owners about anything they may have experienced, but someday soon I will.

Update: My eldest sister has done a little extra investigation on the house on Hanna Rd. and found that the owners before my family bought it was indeed the insurance company. The insurance company bought it from a family after the husband died prematurely of a heart attack in the master bedroom. The owners before this family sold the home after the husband also died prematurely of a heart attack in the master bedroom. Quite the coincidence.

Update (Apr 2012):  It should be pointed out that although I have not "followed up" personally, through a friend who is still a resident of the area, I found that the home was (and may still be,) in the ownership of some people that were gently asked and said they'd had no problems and no things to cause concern happen after many years and have enjoyed the home immensely. Perhaps whatever was there has moved on... Perhaps there was nothing really there... That's for the reader to decide.


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