haunted Navy ships
In October 1990 the USS Iwo Jima LPH-2 had a major steam leak which killed ten engineers, 6 instantly and 4 a few days later. My orders to go to the ship came right after the accident to replace one of the dead. When I arrived on board nearly a month later, some of the guys were still screaming in their sleep from the nightmares. They were sent into the fire room (aka boiler room) to retrieve the bodies of their friends and co-workers who were now steam cooked and their skin melting off their bodies. We were all kept very busy making repairs to get the ship running to participate in Desert Shield. When underway, the ship is very loud with lots of vibrations all over. We were kept busy with the usual at sea drills, work, and actual general quarters (battle stations) like missile inbound and going through a floating mine field. When we returned to Norfolk, VA, we shut down the boilers and engines. As the engine and fire room cooled, we heard the usual noises of popping and groaning of the metal shrinking as it cooled from well over 100 degrees down to the 50s and 60s. There were some things we couldn't explain. Moving shadow images, sounds of boots on the deck plates, and hammering. A BT (boiler tech) came running in the engine room asking me to go with him. He then asked me if I too hear the hammering. I said I did and that it was just the steam going through the pipes, something we call water hammer. Problem was there was no steam going through the boiler room at that time. If you walk across unfastened deck plates, it'll eventually rock back to it's original position, sometimes right away, sometimes a little later. While in shaft alley I hear the sound of someone skipping the last two rungs of the ladder and start walking towards me. I turned to say something to the roving security watch but there was no one there. We came to accept that these were the crew members who were killed and just accepted their presence. We had a new guy come onboard who firmly believed there was no such thing as ghost. One night while on engine room cold iron watch he was later found on the pier in a fetal position shaking and crying his eyes out. It took 30 days in a mental hospital before he would set foot on the ship. He didn't want to talk about it. All he would say is he now believed in ghost.