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Prisoner's Ward


Between 15 August 2008 and 29 September 2008, my little boy was in a coma in a hospital in Johannesburg. The Staff and Management of said hospital had been so kind to my husband and me that they gave us a room in the Maternity ward to sleep in, as they knew we would not want to leave the hospital. About 10 days in (my mind was muddled due to all the stress, so my timeline is kind of wonky) there was a surge in pre-term births, and they needed to utilize the room we had been sleeping in. A nurse told us that there was a ward which had space for us, if we really felt we could stay there. She did not elaborate on this ward, and we were soon to find out the reason for it.

My husband (now my ex) answered for us, saying we would be happy as long as we did not have to sleep in our car. The hospital is a good hour's drive from home and it was past 10PM by then, so he really was not in the mood to drive home. We were directed to the Ward in question. For some reason I can not remember the number of the Ward, but later found it ironic to what we had experienced. We were directed to the back of the hospital. The Peads ICU is located on the second floor, about a third of the way in from the front of the hospital. To get to our destination, we had to go down to ground floor, and then take a separate set of stairs to the basement level.

The passages we had to follow were dark in places, seeming to really be out of a horror flick, with fluorescent lights flickering on and off and being able to hear your own breathing and footsteps very clearly. We reached the final set of stairs, leading to the basement level and my husband, who had been next to me the entire time, now took the lead and headed down the stairs. When you stand at the top of the stairs you can see about a foot into the ward before the ceiling obscures your view. I stood there, feeling really uncomfortable going into that ward. My husband reached the bottom of the stairs and disappeared from my view.

The hairs on my arms were standing on end; I had goose bumps all over and I walked down the stairs slowly. As I got to about the middle, I could see into the ward. It had the usual nurse's station and the passage with the rooms leading off both sides, but there were beds devoid of mattresses scattered all over.

Reaching the last step, I realized there was a large gate and bars about two feet away from where I stood. I immediately thought of programs where a prisoner walks into the prison and the heavy gate slams shut behind him. My husband stood peering over the nurse's station desk, looking for heaven knows what. As I took in the sights around me, I knew I was looking at the ward where prisoners had been kept. I tried to take the last step but could not move from where I stood. I had the distinct feeling that I was being held back from going in there. I could feel eyes on me from inside the ward, the feeling was intense and very uncomfortable, and then I "heard" a voice say into my mind; "Don't go in there". I could not differentiate between sexes, did not know if it was male or female, but just as I heard this my husband came running to me, grabbed my hand and pulled me back up the stairs.

He told me he had felt someone push past him as he was standing at the nurse's station and it felt very cold and very wrong. He also mentioned he heard eerie giggling coming from a presumably empty room down the passageway.

I've never seen fear like that on his face before, though a few days later I saw it again in ICU with our son.

Since coming to realize that Charlie is always with me, and him telling me he was with us in ICU, I now know it was he warning me. He knew there were bad spirits lurking in that Ward and wanted me nowhere near it. In addition, guess where we ended up sleeping that night? The car was a very welcome bed.

We were like nomads for two more nights, helped with rooms in other, operational wards, and finally getting a room in the Maternity ward again. I never had any bad feelings there, but walking the passageways between Maternity and the Paeds ICU in the early morning hours as my husband and I took turns sitting by our son's bed at night, I had repeated feelings of being followed and watched.

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The following comments are submitted by users of this site and are not official positions by Please read our guidelines and the previous posts before posting. The author, triden07, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

AnnieQuill (1 posts)
4 years ago (2014-05-20)
it sounds like Charlie is the best friend ever!:)
Now if only I had ghost friend... That would be awesome
bizzjoe (1 stories) (161 posts)
5 years ago (2013-03-04)
this story really gave me the heebie jeebies... I wish I had the balls to stay in that ward so I could check out "the vibe"... But I'm a chicken
Gary25 (10 posts)
5 years ago (2012-12-06)
Ah, a prison. A mecca for hauntings of ghosts of all kinds. It's an A+ spot for the spooky feeling every ghost enthusiast enjoys feeling.
triden07 (66 stories) (275 posts)
5 years ago (2012-12-06)
Do you think hospital staff would be very pleased with us? Hehehe, I'm thinking Charlie would be very upset with us if we endeavoured to go there.
I'm not ashamed to say the thought of going back down there gives me the creeping willies
Shlain (13 stories) (246 posts)
5 years ago (2012-12-06)
I am with you 100% regarding the feeling of being watched from behind the gravestones. I make it my mission to look in the opposite direction when passing a cemetary. Whenever we go visit my Dad's grave I always see legs (from ankle to knee) running around this one grave. Its an old "paupers" grave because its just a heap of gravel and a wooden cross with the inscription eroded away. I only see the legs out of the corner of my eye, but its there everytime. In broad daylight!

I've read this story 3 times already! Its brilliant. I hope you know if I was living close by I'd drag you to go ghosthunting with me 😜
triden07 (66 stories) (275 posts)
5 years ago (2012-12-05)
I think the intuition I had was Charlie, loud and clear. Even before I knew I could sense spirits, I'd know not to trust certain areas or rooms in houses that made my skin crawl.

Hi Dan
We are all happy to be out and safe, and I'm very happy to say that my son is now healthy and well.

You know what the really eerie part is? There is a huge cemetary across the street from the hospital. On more than one occasion I'd look at the gravestones as we drove past, there's palisade fencing around so you can see pretty far in, and the graves don't end very far from the fence, and I'd get the feeling that someone is looking at me from behind the gravestones. Now that gave me the willies. But, that I'd always attribute to having an over active imagination.
DARKNESS (3 stories) (2022 posts)
5 years ago (2012-12-05)
Hello again triden, well this a very eerie experience, hospitals are quite renown for these experiences but adding that it was a prisoners ward aswell is the icing on the bloody cake lol. I'm glad you got out of that area and that Charlie was with you to warn you, and of course that your son came through! 😊 Thanks again.

Fergie (37 stories) (1116 posts)
5 years ago (2012-12-05)
Thanks triden, it is so good to be back! 😁

Do you think that your 'heightened emotions' could have played a part in the 'bad feelings' that you felt, when you saw the ward? Or, on reflection, do you think it was just Charlie, giving you a 'heads up'?
triden07 (66 stories) (275 posts)
5 years ago (2012-12-05)
So happy to see you back! It was, in all honesty, the worst 6 weeks of my life. As a parent, as you very well know, it tears you apart being told they might not make it. Atleast we all made it through, by hook or by crook
Fergie (37 stories) (1116 posts)
5 years ago (2012-12-05)
Hi triden, I see I have some serious 'catch-up' to play. 😉
Your narrative reminds me of my own one; bars and all.

Poor you, having to endure the trauma of your little one being in such a critical state of health; then this on top of it all!
You must have been pushed to your utmost limits.
I am just glad that you and your child, both came out okay. 😁
triden07 (66 stories) (275 posts)
5 years ago (2012-12-04)
Thanks for the comment 😉 I'll share "T's" story with you if you like, drop me a mail and I'll send you the story, just be warned, you will need tissues.
beautifuleden (2 stories) (66 posts)
5 years ago (2012-12-04)
Gosh Triden, scary story! Hope your son is ok? What put him in a coma? You must have been devastated! ❤
triden07 (66 stories) (275 posts)
5 years ago (2012-12-02)
Until I learnt that I have had a guardian for the past 7 years, I really couldn't place the direct thought that I had not to go into that ward. My ex husband is one of those macho chauvinists, he claims nothing and no one can scare him, but seeing the fear on his face that night, it really was something I won't forget.
Sapphire_Flames (4 posts)
5 years ago (2012-12-01)
This gave me chiils down my spine! Very spooky. I would've ran back up those stairs straight away! 😆
triden07 (66 stories) (275 posts)
5 years ago (2012-11-30)
It was still empty last year when "T" was in hospital again for a few days. At the popint when the nurse told us about this ward, I don't think she saw any other alternative
It is at the back of the hospital, of course it stands to reason that they would have it far from the other wards, they had criminals and mentally ill patients in that ward when it was operational.

Lol Tim has told me that he would not want to set foot in the Overlook so i'm guessing he wouldn't go to that ward either.
Shlain (13 stories) (246 posts)
5 years ago (2012-11-29)
OMG! This is truely one of your most freaky experiences ever! Was this ward in the basement? Why send you all the way there? How far was the nearest inhabitable ward to this one?

I've seriously got chills. Is it still an abandoned ward? If it is, do some ghost hunting with Tim 😉

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