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.