When you think of world history the Rio Grande Valley probably doesn’t come to mind, but the area’s known history dates back to 1750 when the Spanish first occupied the area.
And with that past comes horrifying revelations. The Old Brownsville City Cemetery reveals much of the city’s history.
Victims of war, gunfights, yellow fever and tragic accidents are buried there. And some people believe those who passed still may occupy the cemetery.
Bonnie Salazar and Thomas Hotcaveg have a special job, “We go in and seek the unknown.”
When people believe there is a supernatural presence in their home they call the Rio Grande Valley Paranormal Investigators..
“When do an investigation at a home we’ll sit there and interview the people and see what they’re experiencing,” Hotcaveg told News Center 23 at the Old Brownsville Cemetery. “We walk around the house and use certain parts of our equipment and try to see if we do pick up anything, we try to communicate and find out the reason why [the spirit] is there.”
They use special tools, like dowsing rods to communicate with what they call, ghosts or spirits like Daisy, who Hotcaveg and Salazar said is one of the most active spirits in the Old Brownsville Cemetery.
They said Daisy, who died in 1879, attended Sombrero Fest, a popular celebration in Brownsville, and played with other children.
“If we sense somebody is here we’ll start asking yes or no questions, we’ll say open for yes and close for no,” Salazar said while holding the dowsing rods, which opened and closed.
Janie said Daisy was present during the recording of the interview because the rods were pointing towards her grave, and opening and closing when yes or no questions were directed towards her.
Daisy became the first pedestrian on record to be killed by a horse carriage. A claimed relative says she was riding on a parade and fell under a wheel and her head was crushed.
Visitors leave toys for Daisy at her grave. The investigators said she is friendly, but will defend herself.
They told a story about a man who took one of Daisy’s toys during the investigators’ ghost hunts. The man was allegedly drunk and did not believe in ghosts. He took one of Daisy’s toys on her grave.
Salazar said the man called the investigators and said he was sick and in the hospital. They told him to return the toy.
When the toy was returned, the man was healed and released from the hospital.
“A lot of people are afraid to talk about [because] then they’ll think they’re crazy,” Hotcaveg said.
The investigators said most of the spirits they encounter are harmless, and that the living should be feared more than the dead.
Hotcaveg said most of the time the spirits are “a family member serving as a guardian angel or protector.”
Rio Grande Valley Paranormal Investigators are having a ghost tour Saturday at 8pm at the Stillman House Museum.