Time travel as close as your local cemetery.

Was it me or a paranormal event? You decide

June 13, 2015 / by davidwalton


The site in Loretto, KY where the lives of five teenage boys came to a tragic end in May 1964. Out of more than two dozen photos I shot on June 8, 2015, this was the only frame that was in focus.

The year was 1964. A month before the official first day of summer, five teenage boys from Marion County, Kentucky piled into a car and headed out for a night of fun. That fun, however, turned tragic when the car, traveling in excess of 80 mph, blew a tire on KY 49 and crashed into a large hickory tree over 200 feet away killing all of the car’s occupants.

Some of the boys, all students at St. Francis High School, had attended a basketball banquet earlier that evening, according to state police in Lebanon at the time of the accident.

In memory of the deceased 16-year-olds — Stanley Ballard, Ray Clark, Donnie Donahue, David Hamilton and Wayne Simms — concrete crosses bearing each name were erected at the scene of the accident.

On a recent weekend trip to Loretto, KY, I drove past the crosses for the first time. During my visit with friends, I asked about the large white crosses. They said the accident was a tremendous loss for the community at the time and recently family members held a memorial service at the site to mark 50 years since the boys were killed.

I decided to stop at the site on my way back to Louisville, taking more than two dozen photos. Although the site — smack dab in the middle of farm country — was pristine and peaceful, as I read the names engraved on each cross I could sense the presence of death. It filled the air.


Here is one of dozens of photos that turned out blurry. It may not look out of focus at first glance so I urge you to click on the image to enlarge it.

The next day when I downloaded my photos onto my home computer, I was floored. Every single image was blurry except for one. I have been taking photos for as long as I can remember and feel as though I’m an above average photographer. I have no explanation for what happened.

When I shared my experience with my friend Sara, who is also an avid photographer, she quickly attributed it to a paranormal event. “A force or spirit was present that didn’t want you taking photos,” she said. I think Sara may be right, but I’ll let you decide for yourself. And take note of the shadows on the crosses.

Until next time…

4 thoughts on “Was it me or a paranormal event? You decide

  1. Anonymous says:

    Never knew about that story. Weird that the photos were blurry.

  2. Danna Fogle says:

    Thank you for sharing your story , it was very touching . One of the young men Tay Clark was my uncle , they has left my grandparents house after trying to get my father to go with them , but he was not ready to go at that time so they left without him , I was not born at that time I came along in 1967 I thank god that my father didn’t go or I would not have the life I have now , but my heart hurts for the loss of my daddy’s brother , an my grandparents son , I love listening to the stories about him , he was a wonderful man. I live about a 1/2 mile from this site so I get to pass him everyday . Prayers in heaven to my Uncle Ray .,

    • Danna Fogle says:

      Sorry I misspelled a fee words, Ray Clark, and they had

    • davidwalton says:

      Danna: Thanks for sharing additional information about that fateful evening. The crosses have such a forceful presence. They are such a fitting tribute for the five young men who perished. At first I wasn’t sure if the landowner was religious or whether it was the site of an accident. I would eventually learn the latter to be true. Very sorry for your loss.

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