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Roberts Cemetery
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NOTE: The following is a true story, but most attempts to substantiate it have failed. Long time residents of Pensacola, Florida may remember it, but most have only the few sketchy details to remember that were made available to them by the newspapers at the time.

Huge Oaks with Moss - Pensacola, Florida

In preparing this story, I relied heavily on the word of Mr. Burnie Paul, a resident of Pensacola for over fifty years. Mr. Paul remembers the story as a young adult, who followed it in the newspaper; I remember it as a child. Due to the span of time between then and now, we both acknowledge that there could be some miscalculations made, but the fact remains that at one time there was a ghoul in Pensacola, who was never known to have been caught. If he had been caught, the newspapers never told us.

In the year 1957, summer I think, the citizens of Pensacola, Florida awoke to a startling reality. There on a back page of the newspaper was a very brief story of a grave in the Escambia Bay Baptist Church Cemetery (Roberts Cemetery) that had been broken into and the body removed!

At some later date, probably a month or so, again a grave located in the same cemetery was desecrated in the same manner. The Escambia Bay Baptist Church Cemetery is located on Creighton Road near an area known as Gull Point. Again, there was another back page story, containing very little detail in the Pensacola News-Journal.

In looking over this, I can only assume that the morbid nature of the crime caused the newspaper reporters to withhold some of the gory details, fearing an outburst from the population. The crime itself was morbid and it may have been that the newspaper was trying to protect the public as much as possible.

At some point later, a third body was dug up. This time it occurred at the Whitmire Cemetery, located on Johnson Avenue in an area known as Ferry Pass, a short distance from Gull Point, where the previous activity had occurred. In this last crime, the body of a teenage girl was removed from its grave and was found across the road from the cemetery, near a small stream. She had only been buried a short time, possibly only a matter of a few days.

The newspaper again carried a back page story on this latest crime. This was to be the last grave dug up by the ghoul.

In the years that have passed, there have been many guesses as to who the culprit was. Some believe he was a relative of a prominent citizen, who kept pressure on the newspaper to keep it quiet. Some believe he was the employee of a funeral home. Others simply say that he was never caught and may still be among them today!

© Copyright 2007 by Wilson Jay