Haunted Historical Ghost Walks talks stranger danger


Photo by Kristina DiBlasio

Bethany Clancy and Kristina DiBlasio

“Rockwell Hall has always intrigued me, as I spent a great deal of time in Delaware Park growing up nearby in North Buffalo,” said supernatural enthusiast, George Apfel.

He continued, “I was driving past the hall around 2010 with a friend who saw what appeared to be lights in the tower over the hall. I pulled over to park and took a couple of pictures. I did note what appeared to be an orb inside the tower, though. While Rockwell Hall has never been a church, it is designed in the shape of a crucifix – “Cruciform” design as it is called.  Cruciform buildings seem to attract hauntings. This building also contains a theater, and theatres are very haunted places. Towers, cupolas, and church steeples also seem to attract hauntings – somewhat like a paranormal antenna.”

Along with SUNY Buffalo State, during one of the many Haunted History Ghosts Walks West Side is shown for its haunted history. The tours occur all over the Buffalo area but specific to the West Side is the Olmsted-Richardson district walk, which specified on events and landmarks with some haunted history. 

The tour guide for this walk, Daniel Flynn, a Buffalo State graduate school student, started off the tour with an important disclaimer on why the Richardson Complex wasn’t included. The area is avoided because of the correlation of mental health being considered something to be afraid of.  

Everyone knows the term stranger danger, and Hoyt Lake has its own haunting tale that deals with the horror of children going missing. June 21, 1961, Richie Edgington is five years old and is approached by a woman who states that she is a friend of his mother and she asks him to come with her. 

He hesitates for he has never seen this woman before. She then switches her demeanor and offers him candy, he takes it and then her hand and leaves with her. 

The two go on to have what seems like a normal day, a trip to the zoo looking at all the exhibits and then a stroll through Delaware Park. Flynn went on with the story and said, “While they’re standing beside Hoyt Lake, taking in the view, she kneels beside him and puts both hands on his shoulders…she whispers in his ear, this is where I’m going to drown you.”

Najee Walker, the PR assistant for The Haunted Historical Ghost Walks, said that it originated in 1996 and has been educating people about Buffalo and its haunted history for over twenty years. The tours range from Orchard Park to Canandaigua and even Larkinville. 

“While the tour summarizes the intriguing history of the area and observes its remarkable architecture, reports of mysteries and encounters with the supernatural are its main focus,” said Walker. 

The Mason Winfield Haunted History Ghost Walks occurred on Fridays from the end of September through October. Although the tours are completed for the season, information for future tours can be found here.