What would you do if you found out your four-year-old was communicating with a ghost?
That is the reality Wagga mother Ruth Slinn faced last year, when her son Nicholas started talking about his new friend Bailey.
Ms Slinn shared her family’s hair-raising reveal with The Daily Advertiser as part of an exclusive ghost tour, investigating the paranormal mysteries of the city.
Following last week’s campaign launch, the haunts of Wagga started surfacing, with residents revealing their own supernatural experiences.
Ms Slinn said Bailey had first appeared for her son after a hospital visit in August.
“My husband had a heart attack and we were visiting him,” Ms Slinn said. “I didn’t think much of it at the time, but Nicholas was saying, ‘Mum this is amazing’.”
Afterwards, the four-year-old began talking about a Bailey – a “boy who was naughty and got hurt and had died in the hospital”.
Ms Slinn said she was not one to believe in “that sort of thing”, but her son had such specific details about Bailey’s age and his death, she decided to contact the Historical Society anyway.
“They said: ‘We know exactly what you’re talking about’,” she said. “They didn’t think I was a weirdo at all.”
According to an archived DA article, the four-year-old’s friend, Frederick Bailey, had died at Wagga hospital in 1944, after an accident involving gelignite.
Frederick and his friend, Colin Moiler, had been playing with the explosive material before the unexpected blast killed both 14-year-olds.
While Frederick had died in hospital, Colin was “blown to pieces”.
“Naughty Bailey is not just an imaginary friend,” Ms Slinn said. “There are so many specific details … like the picture he drew with odd-looking hands.”
The Wagga woman said they weren’t scared of Nicholas’ ghost friend, but she had contacted a ghost busting group for ideas on how to get rid of Bailey.
“We took him to his parents and thought we got rid of him,” Ms Slinn said. “But Nicholas says Bailey ‘hates’ his parents … that’s not a word he’s used before.”
According to Nicholas, the 14-year-old ghost now lives next door and comes to visit, for sleepovers.
Ms Slinn said she hoped to locate a living relative of the 14-year-old ghost to help him find his family.
“Hopefully naughty Bailey will want to stay with them,” she said.