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Dough Boys


I was on patrol in Ft Lewis, WA just a couple meters outside the old Madigan hospital. It was 0213 (I had to do time checks) and I was humpin it toward the new hospital when this sobering incident decided to find me.

I was on the road that runs alongside the old hospital when I stopped to look at the parking lot where vehicles were still parked. I shinned my light into the lot (messing around with a racoon) and saw movement other than me and the coon. I sat there waiting to see maybe a late arriving/departing Soldier get into his car when I heard laughter on the opposite side of the road and a voice similar to Jimmy Stuart say, "Looney, aint he?".

Now, I have the most respect for my brothers and sisters in arm, living or not. I stood there searching for who was speaking to me. No one. So, I spoke. I said, "How long has it been?" Nothing. I carried on to the other side of the compound to sign the card on the door and maybe take a moment. I signed the card and sat on the stoop, when I get a response: "Always here, Troop." I was speechless to say the least. I got up and rendered a salute and moved out.

Not 3-4 days after that I was inspecting what we call the WWII barracks for functioning locks. I was in building 3 looking down the long corridor wondering how bad it must have been to live here without adequate heat and air when I smelled tobacco. There hasn't been a soul in there all night but myself. I walked around to see traces of anyone else and watching the windows. I heard the same voice as the other night, but this time he wasn't talking to me. I hear, "Must be a grand." "Hey, fella..." and "Say, wha-da-ya know".

I must have stood there smiling for at least 20 minute at the thought of the boots I was filling.

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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, Soldier1, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

PestilentPixie (4 stories) (52 posts)
11 years ago (2011-02-22)
I was just combing through all the different expirences people have had and I have to say that I enjoyed reading your story very much. My Dad used to tell me stories of the old barracks he would have to patrol and so much of your story rings true to things I've heard my Dad say for years. Going into my favs now.
vicuttie8 (7 stories) (92 posts)
13 years ago (2009-08-28)
Wow I've rad a lot of storys on here & this was the only one that made me smile! 😊

Tori ❤
JamesRobiscoe (419 posts)
13 years ago (2009-08-27)
Soldier1--Terrific story and completely credible. Sounds as though there's a group reliving happy moments + at least one soldier is more than residual, he's intelligent and present.
Wonder how many in camp experience it (saying the odds are 1 in 10 have extrasensory perception like you), not only now but over the decades?
Bet if you ever go back to Ft. Lewis he'd talk to you again.
BriFischer05 (14 stories) (169 posts)
13 years ago (2009-08-27)
Awesome story. Much respect to you and your comrads, living or not. I'd try to snap some pics.
4d (15 stories) (167 posts)
13 years ago (2009-08-26)
Great story, thanks for sharing! (Also thanks for protecting our country, I have tremendous respect for the armed forces. 😊) Sounds like a real cool ghost hanging out there. It was neat that he responded, even if it took a little longer than you expected 😆 Aloha - 4d
libertybelle (14 stories) (207 posts)
13 years ago (2009-08-26)
How interesting--my brother Dennis was stationed at Ft. Lewis as a medic at Madigan. This was in the early '80's, around the time Mt. St. Helens blew its top. Too bad he never had any odd adventures like that--at least none that he's shared with me or the rest of the family.

Still, having encountered a Revolutionary War soldier in my house when I was fifteen (and Dennis' twin brother, Steve, saw him too, on a different occasion--they were seven at that time), I'm inclined to think that McArthur had it right when he said old soldiers never die--and sometimes they don't just fade away, either.
Soldier1 (5 stories) (10 posts)
13 years ago (2009-08-26)
I have since moved to Ft Benning. I still remain in contact with friends stationed there and I will post anything new when I learn of it.
Soldier1 (5 stories) (10 posts)
13 years ago (2009-08-26)
I'm sure he was from the WWI-WWII era. The dialect and age of the barracks and all certainly point it into that direction.
book_luver123 (227 posts)
13 years ago (2009-08-26)
Weird... Well Have you considered it a soldier from a war of some sort. Tell us if any more happens. ❤

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