Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Life in the morgue

SPC C and I hitched a ride with the Command Sergeant Major and his driver down to Summer Camp - The Haunting on Monday morning. We'd been told we could travel down on the Commanding General's helicopters early Monday afternoon, but the sky was still very cloudy Monday morning, and I didn't want to get stranded, again, at Post when all my Soldiers were down at the Urban Operations Training Center.

I'd not slept well Sunday night, so I snoozed in the back seat as we drove to the other base.

It's a former Pediatric Psychatric Hospital that became notorious for highly-publicized abuse cases (horrific in the telling), and was ultimately ordered to be closed in 2002 or 2003, I think.

The National Guard took over the place (1000 acres, 70 buildings, more than a mile of tunnels under the complex) a year or so after it closed, and turned it into an urban operations training center. It's reputed (by them, anyway!) to be one of the premier training sites in the world for that sort of military operation.

It's also reputed to be haunted, which I've mentioned before.

Some of the Soldiers are really wigged out about this hype, and by the time my Chaplain Assistant and I arrived there Monday, quite a few Soldiers had gone "ghost hunting" Saturday and Sunday nights.

The barracks in which SPC C and I were given a room is a building that has a very large morgue in its basement.

Soldiers told me they had photos of themselves taken as they were lying on the slabs in the morgue, and even in the once-refrigerated wall lockers.

I declined the invitation to partake in the festivities.

I may be a bit macabre in my humor, but I do have limits.

I really do.

Blessings and peace to one and all,

Fr. Tim, SJ

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