Jennifer Redfern has always been interested in the paranormal activity in South Lyon.
But researching it on her own was not easy.
In February she contacted Cameron Johnson, another interested local resident, and they came up with the idea to start the South Lyon Area Paranormal Society. The goal is to reach out to others in the community with the same curiosities, and find answers about why ghosts exist in certain places.
“We wanted to provide a place where people could go without being laughed at or thought they were crazy,” Redfern said. “And we know there is a lot of activity in this town.”
As a member of the South Lyon Area Historical Society, Redfern has a vast knowledge of the history of many buildings and homes in the area. She uses that information when the group goes on ghost hunts to determine who the ghosts might actually be.
“Ghosts to me are a part of history, and we want to help them if we can,” she said.
But one thing the society does not do is exorcisms. “We are not the Ghost Busters,” Johnson said.
The group’s focus is on finding out why the ghosts are there, what type of ghosts they are – good or bad – and gathering evidence of their presence through sounds or pictures. They have conducted about 11 investigations since February, at places like the South Lyon Hotel, the New Hudson Inn, the Gallery Cafe, the South Lyon Cemetery and more.
The historic South Lyon Hotel, Redfern said, “Was one of the most extreme investigations” because it was built on property that was once a cemetery. When they did their investigation in July, the group heard doors slamming and scratching sounds, and the downstairs television turned on when everyone was outside. They used digital cameras and voice recording software to get Electronic Voice Phenomena’s – recordings of voice or voice-like sounds that are not audible to the human ear.
Despite their evidence, doubters of whether ghosts exist or not remain. But Robert Farrand, a member of the society, said people need to come see for themselves.
“Look at our evidence, we aren’t going to put something out there that is false,” he said. “But if you do not believe, then don’t come out.”