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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Ghosts, love and paranormal activity

Photo courtesy of TAPS

The Texas A&M Paranormal Society, or TAPS, in Magnolia before investigating the Historic Magnolia Depot on Friday, Oct. 7, 2022.

Founded in 2018, Texas A&M’s Paranormal Society, or TAPS, is the university’s first known paranormal investigative student organization that focuses on learning about anything in the paranormal realm in a real, scientific way.

Aerospace engineering senior Courtney Kramer is serving as president of TAPS this semester after spending a majority of her time at A&M as a member of the organization. 

“We’re all a bunch of people who are into anything paranormal,” Kramer said. “I went through so many different organizations freshman year, A&M has so many.”

Kramer said she remembers filing through the informational tables her freshman year and later calling her father to explain her deep interest in TAPS and her excitement to join. 

“I feel like a lot of people say you need to come in with a bunch of spooky experiences, but I came in because I like the show Ghost Adventures,” Kramer said.

Kramer said her craziest paranormal experience was her first ever experience with the organization in October 2019 in Dawson, Texas. 

“It was this old gym, where back in the [19]60s a plane crashed about four miles from it … about 85 people died, including the pilot,” Kramer said.

Kramer said TAPS members were the first to truly investigate the haunted gym that held the bodies while officials were identifying the victims.

“We had an old investigator from there, so that’s how we got the connection,” Kramer said.

The group of ghost hunters experienced an entire night of activity with the use of different equipment, provided by the organization. 

“Different energies can do different things … We were asking questions like, ‘[are] there multiple people?’ and it would beep at me like 12 times,” Kramer said.

The student organization spends the majority of its time investigating different locations across small towns all over Texas while also serving as a social organization for members to explore their interests in whatever paranormal topics the members see fit. 

“It’s not just ghosts, that’s usually what we go on investigations for. We also talk about anything paranormal; aliens, cryptids, myths, legends, things like that,” Kramer said.

History senior Ayden Rodriguez is a continuing member that has never experienced any paranormal activity but knows a lot of people who have. He joined the organization with an open mind and tries to look at the evidence they gather during investigations in a skeptical light.

“[TAPS] is very opening and welcoming to all types of believers or skeptics,” Rodriguez said.

“I think that I began more of a believer, but now, after investigating more, I’ve become more of a skeptic,” Vice President Annalia Jackson said. 

Marketing senior Annalia Jackson initially joined TAPS because of her interest in horror movies and all things spooky. 

“I felt like I really found my group at A&M and met all of my best friends in this organization,” Jackson said.

As Halloween slowly approaches in Aggieland, the investigating organization has a few on-campus recommendations for the ghost-loving students who want to get in the spooky spirit.

“If you want to go somewhere on campus, the Animal Industries Building is haunted,” Kramer said. “You can go in and walk around [during building hours] for sure.”

The reason the building is haunted, according to Kramer, is because it was once a meat-processing lab and during a late-night shift, a man accidentally cut his left leg in what is now the basement.

“He made it to the elevator and apparently bled out and passed away there,” Kramer said. “This is on record and [on] A&M archives and everything.”

Francis Hall, right next to Evans Library, is also considered a ghost hub according to both Kramer and Jackson.  

“I’ve only been once, but we were able to get it to say my name multiple times,” Jackson said. “And everytime we would ask its name it would constantly respond ‘George.’”

“Apparently when Franics was being built … one of the construction workers died while building it,” Kramer said. 

However, Rodriguez explained how not all deaths are followed with hauntings of the deceased.

 “I’ve done a lot of research in Bryan, so I know Bryan is a very old place.” Rodriguez said. “It’s a tragedy that happened, [but] it doesn’t mean it’s automatic.”

Jackson said that her hairdresser, who grew up in Bryan, once explained how a building  where Blinn College is now located, was once a theater.

“Back in the day, there was this couple … and a man ended up murdering his boyfriend in the theater. Supposedly it is still haunted and people get activity there,” Jackson said.

For students who are wanting to join, investigating these haunted areas is not a requirement for the members who prefer socially attending the meetings to discuss all things paranormal.

“We also do house calls, usually from college students in the area who think their house is haunted,” Kramer said. “We are always open to suggestions.” 

TAPS meets every other Thursday at 8:30 p.m. in the Memorial Student Center, or MSC, and is currently closed for applications but will reopen in January for the upcoming spring semester for students who are interested in the world of paranormal. 

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