Do you believe in ghosts?

Ghosts, ghouls, spirits and lost souls. Evidence, energy and entities.

These were only a few words that were heard at the ghost hunt presentation and walk presented by Chris Fleming on Saturday night.

Fleming, a well-known paranormal investigator originally from Chicago, gave a presentation followed by a two hour ghost hunt around campus.

Fleming was a co-host of the TV show Dead Famous for three years, created Unknown Magazine: Real Experiences of Unusual Phenomena, and now travels as a professional medium and speaker.

The first time Fleming started having unexplained experiences as a child, spirits would tap him on the shoulder, dark masses would stand in front of him and ghosts would talk to him.

Although Fleming has been all across the country, appearing on famous television shows and in magazines, he admits the most haunted place he’s been to is his own house growing up.

“I wasn’t hunting ghosts because they were in my house,” Fleming said. “I didn’t have to go very far.”

Fleming wasn’t the only one affected by the spirits residing in his house. The nanny even quit working for the Fleming family because she thought the devil was living there.

Ever since he was a boy, ghosts have been attracted to him, and he fully accepts that.

“The odd thing is I didn’t really grow up thinking that I would be doing anything like this,” Fleming said. “I actually went to school to be an artist and I was a graphic designer for six years.”

During the presentation, photographs, video clips, evidence and explanations were accompanied with haunting music. I’m positive I wasn’t the only one getting chills. Fleming was a passionate and convincing lecturer and explained things very clearly.

“I radiant differently than other people based on my knowledge and my experiences throughout my whole life.” Fleming said. “Because of this, [the ghosts] realize, this person is aware of us and has communicated with us because his radiance is above and beyond those who are still in the third dimension. He knows that I’m here; he can communicate with me.”

And communicate he does. Fleming has an array of equipment for capturing photographs, voice recordings, videos and frequency meters, which he brought along on the walk.

He communicates with ghosts much like how he communicates with people.

“People think that just because ghosts are no longer a physical body, that they’re different than us. They’re not,” Fleming said.

Ghosts are just like people, Fleming said. They have a mind, a conscious energy and a purpose. They just don’t embody a physical mass.

More than half of the people in the audience on Saturday night had seen or experienced a ghost. A fifth of the audience had experiences as a child, similar to what Fleming experienced.

Fleming has been doing ghost walks since 2007 and has led over 1,000 people on ghost hunts.

Before the UW-Whitewater group headed out on the walk, Fleming had to explain a few things.

“There could possibly be some startling things that occur,” Fleming said. “There could be some scary things, but we will address that when it comes.”

Fleming admits that he himself gets startled when he is in the presence of a ghost, but it doesn’t really bother him.

“I still get startled,” Fleming said. “If I’m walking down a corridor and all of a sudden something pulls on my hair or pushes me, I’ll laugh at it and say, ‘Why did you do that?’”

Many students who attended the ghost hunt on the other hand had a different point of view.

“If I see something, I’m not going to be able to sleep tonight!” senior Kalla Schaefer said.

Our first stop was the eerie water tower at Starin Park. Before Fleming began recording conversations, a student ran around the park and back to us.

“We saw shadow people running through the woods,” freshman Jaleel Lowe said, which amped our curiosity.

At one point during the hunt, Fleming used an electronic device called an electric voice phenomenon, or EVP, to record a few questions, then rewound and played back.

“Are there many spirits in Whitewater?” Fleming asked.

“Many,” the EVP said.

“Do you miss anything about the physical world?” Fleming asked.

“Touch,” It replied.

Fleming also used an Ovilus X, an electronic device with an unlimited, embedded vocabulary of words.

Although the manufacturer does not claim that the device allows communication with the dead, we heard something remarkable.

“Are there witches here?” Fleming asked.

“Witch,” the Ovilus X replied, and we all freaked out.

“The possibility of it saying this is one in a million!” Fleming exclaimed.

Our next stop was the cemetery, where we met up with two freshmen.

“We were playing beach volleyball for a little bit and we saw a little light so we were going to check it out,” freshman Storm Walsh said. “[We were] joking around, like ‘We’re going to come find you!’ and we get halfway through the graveyard and there’s this glowing thing floating there. It looked like a ghost digging, but we weren’t sure if we should stay or turn around. It was the first time we’ve ever seen a ghost. It was crazy.”

“I don’t believe in that kind of stuff, but when I saw it, I was scared. It looked like a ghost digger. It was crazy.” freshman Thommy Ziolkowski said.

More EVPs and Ovilus X conversations were recorded and played back, accompanied with the group of students gasping at the phenomenon.

By midnight, Fleming and our group had said our goodbyes to the ghosts and I’m sure many of us were convinced that ghosts do exist outside of our reality.

“I’m very grateful that with my life experiences, people are willing and able to listen to me talk and share what I’ve experienced,” Fleming said.