Reader Submission: The Haunted Nursing Home

hospital hall

“This is a story about the nursing home where I’ve been working for a little over two years. I’ve heard coworkers say they’ve had paranormal experiences in our workplace, but until a week ago I had not.

I just recently received my CNA license and work at a nursing home in Sioux Falls, SD. I now work mainly night shifts starting at 11 p.m. and ending at 7 a.m. I prefer these shifts because they tend to be fairly quiet and uneventful. I usually work with two RNs and two to three other CNAs.

Last week, my shift started as usual with the residents in bed and the crew chatting. A few hours passed, and we answered some call lights here and there, but I was getting bored. I then noticed a call light at the end of the main hall. It was ‘my turn,’ so I called out before starting my journey to the room at the end of the hall. I heard one of my coworkers say something as I was walking away, but I didn’t catch it so I continued on.

When I finally got to the room, I cracked open the door and said ‘How can I help you tonight?’ I got no response, so I walked into the room, thinking the worst, only to find an old woman I had never seen before sitting on the edge of her bed crying. I said. ‘Oh honey, what’s wrong? Are you having trouble sleeping or not feeling well?’ The woman didn’t acknowledge me in any way. She just stared straight ahead with tears running down her face.

I took a step closer and said, ‘Hon, I’m here to help, even if you just need someone to talk to.’ The woman continued to pay no attention to me. I went to take a step closer when I heard what sounded like the world imploding out in the hallway. I ran out the door to see the snack cart, which had been full of dishes, laying in the hallway on its side, dishes scattered everywhere. I stared at it in shock. No one was even remotely close to where the cart had been sitting.

My coworkers rushed down the hallway to check on the commotion. When they got to me and the mess, they laughed and asked how the hell I had managed to take down the big, heavy cart. They also asked a more disturbing question: What had I been doing in that empty room for so long?

My stomach dropped. At that point, I said ‘What empty room? There’s a lady in there.’ The RN in charge gave me a concerned look and said, ‘That room has been empty for three weeks, dear.’ She then started to explain how the call lights go on by themselves sometimes, and that it’s an old building, after all. I insisted it wasn’t a call light glitch, that someone was really in there. Seeing the expression on my face, the RN turned and went into the room. She came out not even 30 seconds later, saying ‘The room’s empty, dear. I think these nights are getting to you.’ I went back into the room to see for myself, only to find an empty room and an empty bed.

Knowing how crazy I looked, I threw out all kinds of possible explanations. The RN simply said, ‘I believe you. I myself have seen enough in this building to know that some of our residents never truly leave.’ All I could do was thank her for not calling me crazy and thank her for believing me. She gave me the rest of the night off, and I haven’t seen anything since. I’m kind of hoping I never will.”

Have you encountered a ghost on the job? Share your story here!