I had to share this gem of a true story with all the other Resurrection Mary fans out there. The story comes from a good friend of mine who is, like myself, a former police officer. It might actually help to explain why there seems to have been a spike in Resurrection Mary sightings in the 1980s.
My friend was on patrol in the early 1990s and was across the street from Resurrection Cemetery in Justice, IL parked next to and chatting with a Justice police officer. The Justice police were keeping an extra eye on the cemetery at night close to the Halloween season to discourage vandals or curiosity seekers after the cemetery was closed.
As they were talking, a car pulled up to them at a high rate of speed and a female jumped from the vehicle. She looked terrified and was screaming that they had just seen “Resurrection Mary!” along Archer Avenue near the Fairmount Cemetery. Fairmount Cemetery is within eyeshot of The Willowbrook Ballroom which is one of the locations associated with the legend of “Mary”.
Both officers looked at each other and rolled their eyes but because the woman was so visibly upset and serious they decided to check things out.
As they passed the Willowbrook Ballroom, my friend told me that he actually did see a glowing figure disappear into the woods near the Fairmount Cemetery. He said that he actually was a little bit startled at seeing this and pulled off the road to investigate. He started to walk into the woods with his gun drawn (he laughs about this now!) not knowing how his gun was going to protect him from a ghost!
He caught another glimpse of the the figure in the woods and it was quickly gone again! He walked in the direction of where he last saw the glowing figure and he couldn’t believe that he could see a figure wearing a glowing white dress behind a group of trees! His voice cracking, he identified himself as a police officer and ordered the figure to come out from the group of trees. The figure moved and started walking toward him. He couldn’t believe what he saw next. As the figure came closer he could see that it was actually a male figure wearing a white dress and blonde wig. The male subject had covered the dress in the liquid from numerous glow sticks causing it to glow.
I can’t really repeat word for word what my friend and the Justice police officer said to this individual but the censored version would be something like, “What the heck do you think you are doing out here!” The individual explained that he had been dressing up like “Resurrection Mary” for the past 10 years (early to late 1980s at that time) and scaring people along Archer Ave as it got close to Halloween.
They asked him if there was anyone else in the woods and he called a number of his friends out who had been hiding with video cameras and lights. Of course, now it was funny and other police officers were showing up to get a gander at “Mary” and it started taking on a kind of “circus atmosphere” He remembered that they had taken a Polaroid photo with a number of police officers standing next to and putting their arms around “Mary”. He swears he still has the photo and promises that he will show it to me when he finds it.
They finished by deciding to extend “Mary” and her friends some grace and let them go with a stern warning to cease their ghostly activities or face prosecution for startling motorists and possibly causing an accident.
The next day it was apparent that “Mary” had not heeded their advice and it was also painfully apparent that the Cook County Sheriff’s Police did not find his/her antics as amusing as the local authorities did. As my friend was watching a glowing drag queen in handcuffs being “assisted” into a Cook County Cruiser he was thinking, “That would be a really cool booking photo!”
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