Two years ago, art teacher Julie Elver delivered the graduation speech for the centennial school year graduates. During her speech she recalled a time when she went into the basement to retrieve some materials for her sculpture, and when she went down there, she saw “The Ghost of Sequoit Past.”
Although Elver shared this memory for her graduation speech, this was just a story. She admits to making up the story for entertainment purposes, and on top of that, she does not even believe that the school is haunted.
“I have a hard time believing in supernatural things, unless there is real proof,” Elver said. “You have to have evidence and backup.”
According to Michael Kleen, the writer of the Mysterious Heartland, a site ranking the most haunted schools in Illinois, an Antioch art teacher witnessed all the lockers open and close, in unison, while she was gathering supplies in the basement. Kleen ranked Antioch Community High School as the fourth most haunted high school in Illinois.
During her speech, Elver claimed to make up the story about the lockers as well. However, she gave the speech for graduation two years ago and the Mysterious Heartland rankings came out five years ago. So, there is a possibility that ghosts could actually be in the school, and the story could have spawned from an earlier art teacher.
There are some students of ACHS that do not side with Elver and her ideas. Senior Sarah Opolka believes that the school is truly haunted and has seen some unnatural occurrences herself. During her freshman year, she was a part of a lock-in for the volleyball team. Some of the seniors at the time thought it would be funny to try and scare the freshmen. The group of seniors opened all the lockers near the auditorium and acted like they were never in the hallway.
“When we walked past at first, we thought it was a ghost, but then we all found out that it was the girls on Varsity,” Opolka said. “So, we closed all of the lockers, but when we came back, there was one locker open.”
She and her friends asked the Varsity players if they knew anything about the locker being open, and they were not even in the locker bay.
There was another instance in her freshman year when Opolka witnessed a supernatural act. She was at the school late after school one day, and she was meeting with one of her teachers. There was no one else in sight or in the school besides the custodial crew.
“I walked past an exit sign to get to my teacher’s room, and it was perfectly fine,” Opolka said. “When I walked out, there was a piece of it on the floor.”
However, Opolka does not voice the opinion of the entire student body. Fellow senior Justin Prinn does not think the school is haunted.
“I do not think the school is haunted simply because I do not believe in ghosts,” Prinn said.
Prinn also does not believe that a drama student hung himself in the auditorium, as legend has it.
So, is the school really haunted? That is the question that may never get a clear answer.