Graveyard Shift
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This Man Kept Calling His Loved Ones… Even Though He’d Been Dead For Hours

Updated March 13, 2020 379.5k views13 items

Mysterious phone calls from the dead make for excellent horror movie plots, but this eerie phenomenon also happens in real life. Many stories of unexplained phone calls show that they're not just the result of grief-stricken imaginings. Although people try to explain these odd occurrences by blaming malfunctioning cell phone technology, reports of phantom phone calls go back to at least 1967.

Charles E. Peck's Metrolink death is one of the most prominent and creepy stories about phone calls from dead people since author Dean Koontz's deceased mother phoned to give him a warning. Peck was killed instantly in a horrible 2008 Metrolink commuter train accident where a total of 25 people died and 135 were injured. But before anyone knew Peck was dead, his family members received 35 calls from his phone for several hours following the disaster. Whether it was due to phone damage or the train rider reaching out from beyond, we may never know, but it's nice to believe that even those who have passed are only a phone call away.

  • Rescue Workers Used Peck's Calls To Trace His Location

    Before rescue workers discovered Charles Peck's body in the wreckage, they had no reason not to believe the calls placed to his family meant he was still alive. As it became clear they probably weren't going to find any survivors in the crash, their rescue efforts turned into a mission to recover bodies. But when yet another call came from Peck's phone, they decided to trace it to find his location.

    Unfortunately, they discovered his body and knew that he died on impact. Police never revealed if Peck's phone was found.

  • Photo: Craig Wiggenhorn / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0

    Coroners Confirmed Peck Died Upon Impact And Wasn't Alive To Make The Phone Calls

    Although rescue teams were excited because the phone calls might mean Charles Peck was still alive, that wasn't the case. They discovered Peck's body an hour after the last phone call was placed.

    According to anecdotal sources like forums and unsolved mysteries sites, the coroner was unable to find signs that Peck had survived for any amount of time after the crash, confirming the calls were not made while he was still alive.

  • It's Possible Peck's Damaged Phone Made Calls On Its Own

    Anyone who has ever butt-dialed a number knows it's possible to make a phone call accidentally. Perhaps an object was sitting on top of Peck's phone, causing it to make random calls. The phone was most likely severely damaged during the disaster, so it may have malfunctioned.

    Peck's broken phone may have called his speed dial list. When this story was posted on Reddit, several users shared their own creepy stories of malfunctioning phones and posted eerie phone activity stories from online forums. The possibility that Peck's phone suffered some technical issue shouldn't be overlooked.

  • Charles Peck's Phone Was Never Found, So Perhaps He Really Was Reaching Out From The Afterlife

    Although rescue workers were able to locate Charles Peck's body successfully, his phone was never discovered. It's possible that it was completely destroyed in the disaster or damaged to the point of malfunctioning, but why it made calls to several of the people Peck was closest to we may never know.

    Perhaps he was reaching out to tell his loved ones not to worry or say goodbye. Maybe he took it with him into the afterlife, like ghosts who are seen in the clothes they were wearing when they passed. Since the rescue team was able to trace the calls to locate his body, maybe Peck was simply leading them to it. No one will ever know for sure, so this story may forever remain a mystery.