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My Uncle Reaching Out to Us


My mom has always just had feels about things. She's intuitive and just always is right (not just in the motherly sense). She sees shadows and mists and even people. She comes from a big family and none of her siblings have been close ever since a matriarchal grandmother died in 1997.

Even before my gram's death, her siblings had a hard time especially the black sheep of the clan, my uncle Gene. My mother and Gene were very close being the two youngest. Gene followed in his father's footsteps doing construction by day and being a firefighter by night. He was so proud to make this comeback and fighting his addictions after time in rehab. He was proud to be an uncle. He was a big kid himself being a prankster of all sorts, played piano while we danced and sang with him, taught us songs, sang "oldies" to us that he loved, believed in ghosts and told us stories, and pretty much took us all over boston.

We moved to maine in 1998 making it difficult to see family in general but he still sent christmas, birthday, anniversary cards every year and visited when he could. Gene was always there for you, just the kind of guy you want to have around.

Unfortunately his addictions came back in recent years and he stopped talking and being close with all of us including my mom. It devastated her. The last time I talked to him was christmas and he was mad at me for not calling him and telling him about college. He didn't sent us birthday cards that spring, so my mom called to make sure he was okay. He never called back. While I made plans to move into my new apartment, my mom one day turned to me and said, "Something is wrong. I just know it us. I think something's wrong with Gene". Now, as I was saying my mom feels stuff and sees spirits but she gave a look my mother does get and in a tone I'd never heard from my mother in the years I've known her.

On July 3, 2007 I came home from work to my mom bewilder. She said something is wrong with Gene and we needed to go to boston. My mom and I started on our three hour trip. All the songs it seemed on the radio were songs that either my uncle played or sang or went to concerts with my mom. Just a weird trip.

Right as we came onto the tobin bridge in boston jim croce "time in a bottle" came on. It was 8:21pm. My mom looked at me. When the song was over I started to look at my phone. It my cousin was calling. He told us to take our time and he didn't want to talk with my mom. I didn't tell my mother. She looked at me and said why doesn't he want to talk to me. I ignored her question.

My dad called seconds later and told me to tell my mom to pull over. She heard him through the phone and started to cry and yell and question even as we were in the busy traffic. My uncle had died at 8:21 pm. He had accidentally overdosed. It broke all of our hearts. The song "time in a bottle" eerily struck a chord for my mother and I and my favorite uncle. My mom instantly said that this song has to have been a message. I have not heard the song randomly since.

The week after everything was said and done, I headed back to maine in my new apartment. I was ready to deal with the death the way any college kid would. I was ready to drink and cry and forget. I went up to my new room and looked around. The first thing I thought of was, I need a drink. The second thing was, at least I was moved in and everything in my room was clean.

I left my room to go to the room across the hall for a second. I came back to find my desk chair sitting and facing my bed. I thought, maybe it was there so I asked my roommates. They said they hadn't been in my room. I looked at the chair again. The way it was position was almost like a parent or elder going to lecture a child in their bed. I took the hint and didn't drink (well as much) that night.

That week a butterfly had shown up in the fire station that my uncle had worked at. It hung around the lockers and the guys living room. It didn't leave until someone said, "listen geno, your work here is done. It's okay now". My uncle's childhood friend worked with him and was a fellow firefighter. They went for coffee every morning or took turns. Out of habit, he bought two coffees one morning and brought it to the station. A couple of the guys saw him come in and put the coffees down on the table. And then all of a sudden one of the coffees lifted up and hovered for a second and flew to the floor. It was on a steady surface, there was no wind, and he wasn't directly next to it. No one could explain.

This past month we were moving stuff out of my uncle's house when the keys to the moving truck went missing. We looked everywhere. My dad said they were in his pocket last he knew. The only places my dad had been were on the porch and in the kitchen. We spent an hour looking for them. We looked in the attic closet only to find the keys. My dad had been no where near that!

My aunt and cousin had lived with gene and have both been visited by him in dreams lately and he talks to my cousin and smiles at my aunt. They are the only two in the family that were on rocky terms with gene before he passed away and for him to visit them has given them some peace in his sudden death.

I know this story was long and drawn out but maybe others have similar experiences and could shed some light.

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Comments about this paranormal experience

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, dani528, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
14 years ago (2008-04-20)
Hi Dani and thank you too for sharing your uncle's story with us.

I'm terribly sorry for your great loss as I'm sure Uncle Gene was not only a beloved uncle but also a wonderful person.

I know it's hard to accept the death of someone you love and especially before their time but try to keep the happy memories of him in your heart. I'm sure that is why the chair was pulled by your bed:this is what he would have wanted to tell you so he left you this sign. He knew that even if words were not spoken, you would have understood what he would have wanted to say to you. Remember that you shared a bondness with him, one that should allow you to read beyond words or signs. He was there to say goodbye, to say he's going to the place of everlasting summers but that he will always be watching out for you.

With kind regards,

Tonith (1136 posts)
15 years ago (2008-01-15)
Sounds like he was a good person with a good heart. I'm sure he just wanted to let you know he was ok and no longer suffering in his addiction. His death was not intentional just the result of his illness. It sounds like he is at peace. I'm sorry for your loss but no one dies we just change form and the butterfly is a beautiful example of this.
dani528 (1 stories) (1 posts)
15 years ago (2008-01-15)
Just a little update...
My mom got her cards read and the psychic told her if she wants a sign from him. He'll give her one when she is ready. This weekend we went back to clean up the house and she told me she was going to ask for real this time and she wanted me with her. So we went down to the basement and she said, " Okay Gene I'm ready now. You can give me a sign so I know you're around". So we both kind of hung out and decided he'll do something when he feels like it. And then lights go out in the backroom. It was fantastic!
So yesterday I'm back in Maine reading in my room and the lights go out in my room! Everything in my room didn't work. I tried my TV, my computer, my lightswitch. I blew a circut breaker by just using my bedside lamp, hmmm sounds a little fishy huh?
Later that night my roomate and I were down stairs watching a movie (in the dark mind you). My roomate's phone rang and we both looked at it, all of a sudden a light went on next to our couch. We both looked around tried to see if it was a touch lamp and it wasn't! The switch even said it was off. This happened twice during the movie, weird huh! Maybe he's still trying to give me a sign since I was with my mom❤

Thanks for the really nice comments by the way. It's nice to hear positive feedback. I'm glad other people would thing the chair is a "chat" kind of thing too haha
KimSouthO (27 stories) (1960 posts)
15 years ago (2008-01-15)
Wow, Dani.
I am so sorry for yur loss. It sounds as if your Uncle Gene had batteled demons in his life (alcohol and drugs) but is taking a moment to let all of the family know the demons are gone, he will find his peace now. Hopefully, all the members of your family will be able to let him move on to the other side to that peace. They can release all of their demons regarding Gene and his addictions now as well.

Pay attenttion to the inteneded lecture in your dorm room. The chair did not get that way by mistake.

God Bless!
whitebuffalo (guest)
15 years ago (2008-01-15)
Oh, Dani, how beautiful and sad at the same time. I am sorry for you loss of your Uncle Gene.
I do think the chair was pulled up to your bed to have one of the chats that you described. It is good that you heeded Uncle Gene's warning, albeit half way.
I always think it is such a shame when people get "sucked into" addictions. The tragic thing is, there are so many things to get addicted to, and most of them are readily available.
How wonderful that he is able to visit freely now, and is no longer in the clutches of a habit that would not let him loose in life. I hope that he is again able to show you that fun loving nature that endeared you to him for as long as you need his support.
Thank you for sharing Uncle Gene with us.
FRAWIN (guest)
15 years ago (2008-01-15)
Hello dani528. Let me express my condolences on the loss of your uncle. When we lose someone very close to us, we search for signs that they are not completely gone. Sometimes the signs are there, sometimes they are not and sometimes we take coincindences as signs when in fact they are just that - coincindences. You, however I believe have recieved signs from your uncle. I believe he was saying his goodbyes to his family and friends. The chair pulled up to your bed, I think was his way of saying "lets talk" to his favorite niece.
Take Care and God Bless.


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