Shanon Sinn explores Oak Bay’s most famous ghost and more modern spirit in The Haunting of Vancouver Island: Supernatural Encounters with the Other Side is a collection of 25 spellbinding true tales of the supernatural from the top to the bottom of Vancouver Island.
Sinn, a member of the British Columbia Ghosts & Hauntings Research Society and of Paranormal Studies and Inquires Canada, avoids sensational details and takes a journalistic approach in sharing the compelling true stories behind Victoria’s best known ghosts and hauntings.
That set Oak Bay’s ghost routinely spotted on the greens of Victoria Golf Club and the lone wolf living on Discovery and Chatham islands.
In The Spirit of the Wolf , Sinn explores the story of Staqeya which is wolf in Lekwungen.
“I’ve always felt a special connection to wolves. First Nation members have told me that the wolf is my spirit animal. As a soldier in Afghanistan, I kept a patch of a wolf on my pack. Wolves have a code of honour absent in many animals; they are monogamous, loyal, take care of their sick, and will die for one another. Yet they have been persecuted for thousands of years, often to the point of extinction, out of an unsubstantiated fear that they are dangerous,” Sinn writes.
Apparition of Spring centres on Oak Bay’s perhaps most famous spirit, that of Doris Gravlin seen routinely along the rocky shorline golf course since her 1936 murder, attributed to her estranged husband Victor.
“Tuesday September 22 was the last time anyone saw either of them alive,” Sinn writes. “This was the night of the Autumn Equinox, a detail I have never heard mentioned. It is a sacred time for some, going back to ancient Rome and the cult of the wood-goddess Pomona. Nowadays, Neopagans celebrate the Equinox as a festival of thanksgiving, claiming their traditions can be traced back to antiquity. In an unknowable world of spirits, this date might be more important than one might think. Not every murder becomes a ghost story.”
Victor was found dead in the water about a month later.
Doris’ body was found the next Sunday and spirit sighting started shortly thereafter.
Woman in Chains delves into the haunting of Tod House.
The Haunting of Vancouver Island: Supernatural Encounters launches at Bolen Books on Oct. 23 at 7 p.m.