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Kansas Aviation Museum to try to capitalize on unexplained activity at the museum

04/09/2014 5:00 AM

06/25/2014 5:53 PM

WICHITA — As executive director of the Kansas Aviation Museum, Lon Smith often works late – and alone – at the 1934 building, which was Wichita’s first airport terminal.

One night at about 1 a.m., he says, "I heard a loud, loud screaming sound. Sounded like a female voice more than a male."

He walked in the direction of the sound to the darkened atrium, which once was a waiting area for passengers. He turned on the lights and started to investigate.

"When things like that happen, I tend to look for explanations, like there's wind blowing through a window jamb or something like that," Smith says. "It wasn't anything like that."

So Smith says he returned to work.

"All of a sudden, there it was again," he says. "It was really like a blood-curdling, chills-up-your-back, somebody's-getting-hurt kind of sound. Like if it had been a real person, I would have thought I need to go save this person from some kind of untimely demise."

Instead, he left the building.

"I hate to admit it, but I was a little frightened."

After six years of working there and experiencing about 25 unexplained incidents such as this, Smith has decided to start sharing his experiences.

"For quite a long time, I did not share anything about these incidents because it was my belief that some people might be worried about visiting the museum," he says.

Smith says he's changed his mind on the counsel of a trusted adviser.

(more…)

About Carrie Rengers

Carrie Rengers joined The Eagle's Business team in 2002 despite her inability to even balance a checkbook. Fortunately for her, and readers, her Have You Heard? blog is about business scoops and contains lots of news but almost no math.

A Michigan native, Carrie’s father was quite tragically transferred to Little Rock, Ark., in the middle of her sophomore year of high school. To make matters worse, her parents put her in a girls school. She recovered, though, and went on to enjoy being an English major at Hendrix College (the Harvard of the Ozarks, don’t you know). She worked for the weekly Arkansas Business and the statewide daily Arkansas Democrat-Gazette before moving to Wichita to be with her favorite writer and cook, husband Joe Stumpe.

Carrie encourages readers to contact her with tips, questions, behind-the-scenes business news and even funny quotes from business people. Reach her at 316-268-6340 or crengers@wichitaeagle.com

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