The new film The Haunting in Connecticut is based on a “true story” which occurred at the Hallahan Funeral Home, in Southington, CT., during the 1980s. However, a neighbor of that establishment recently refuted the story.
From My Record Journal:
Kathy Altemus moved into her home across from the then Hallahan Funeral Home on Meriden Avenue about 25 years ago and lived there during the supposed haunting. She said on Saturday that she saw the movie with her grandson, and thought for a scary movie it was not that good.
“I don’t think it had anything to do with what happened over there,” Altemus said Saturday. “There was never any entity over there.”
Altemus said many of the neighbors at the time did believe in the paranormal, but most do not believe there was any kind of supernatural entities in that home.
After the Hallahans, the building was acquired by Darrell Kern of Kern Realty, who wanted to turn the bottom of the building into a realty office. He met fierce resistance from neighbors who wanted the area to remain residential. Town officials sided with the neighbors so Kern renovated the building and rented out the two levels of the home, Altemus said.
The Snedekers moved in soon afterwards. During a neighborhood meeting, a next-door neighbor of the Snedekers asked Altemus if she could keep an eye on the area because Carmen Snedeker, the mother of the family, told his wife that the house was being haunted and it was scaring her.
Altemus began keeping a journal of everything she noticed. She said the neighbors often heard a vehicle that sounded kind of like chains were dragging on it around 3 a.m.
“We figured it was a trash truck,” Altemus said. “We were going to complain about it because we all work and need to get sleep.”
Psychic investigators Lorraine and Ed Warren were called in by the Snedekers to look into the house. Lorraine Warren said they would hear chains left over from the funeral home in the basement to lift caskets to the viewing area rattling even though no one was down there.
Then one night Altemus said she heard the noise and looked out the window to find a pickup truck slowly stop and park under trees a couple houses down from the Snedekers. People would get out and peer in the windows, make noises and knock on the windows of the Snedeker home. They would then take off pretty fast, sometimes returning later in the night, according to Altemus.
Other claims by the Warrens, such as a tree branch falling down on fire during an exorcism that was performed on the home, Altemus said are distorted. With her journal and the work of investigative author Joe Nickell, they had many alternative and logical explanations for what the Warrens said was demonic.
For instance, there used to be a big maple tree in the neighborhood that would periodically have a branch drop onto power lines without insulation, making lights flicker and power to go out.
She said there was a branch that fell down on fire, but it was a few weeks earlier and because of the power lines, not the last gasp of a demon.
However, none of this seems to turn off movie goers. The Haunting in Connecticut was second at the box office this weekend, earning $23 million in its premeire weekend.