A Visit with Ghost Hunter, Historian, Richard Senate
-Traci Otake, Los Angeles Paranormal Examiner
Recently, This Examiner had the opportunity to visit with local Historian and Ghost Hunter Richard Senate. Having been a longtime admirer of his work, this was an interview that was worth waiting for. The first question that Mr. Senate addressed was how he became involved in ghost hunting and in the paranormal in general. Richard Senate was not always a believer in the paranormal. Back in the summer of 1978, he was working with the archeological team at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo at California’s third mission, San Antonio de Padua. After staying at the mission for several weeks, he had been working in the lab late one night, around 12:30 am, and decided to take a walk to the kitchen to get a midnight snack. On his way, he was walking through the mission courtyard when he spotted a light up ahead of him. As his eyes adjusted to the darkness, he could make-out the figure of a monk holding a candle. The monk was only about ten feet away and as Richard started to move closer to him, the figure vanished! Richard noticed that he had not heard the sound of feet moving across the graveled courtyard. So how could someone just vanish into thin air like that?
So, the next morning, instead of joining his colleagues at breakfast, he decided to sit with the monks and have breakfast with them. It was then that he began to ask them if they had any knowledge of spirit activity on the mission grounds. The answers that he got from them were astonishing! They were actually quite used to seeing ghosts around the mission and had many stories to share with Richard! He told them what he had seen the night before in the courtyard and the padres knew exactly who Richard was talking about. There had been a priest named Brother Joseph who had been living at the mission. He had died about 7 years prior to the night Richard had seen him in the courtyard. Brother Joseph had a habit of going to the chapel late at night for an extra hour of prayer and it usually was about 12:30 A.M. when he would cross the courtyard just as Richard had done that night. It seemed that the priests were not at all surprised that Richard had seen Brother Joseph, as they had seen him before as well. It was after this experience at the mission that Richard began to collect ghost stories, and he has been doing so ever since.
These days, Richard Senate teachers and specializes in local historical research of the Santa Barbara and Ventura area. He is also well known as a ghost hunter and paranormal researcher. Richard takes a scientific, archaeological approach when conducting paranormal investigations. His wife Debbie is also involved in his paranormal activities as she is an accomplished psychic medium, herself. Debbie’s abilities are quite helpful when the husband and wife team are on paranormal investigations together. Richard is also known for his tours of Haunted Ventura and his radio appearances which are quite popular. Mr. Senate is also an accomplished author, having published over twenty books. He has also been a consultant on various TV shows since 1979. It was a pleasure to talk with Richard Senate. For more on Richard and his upcoming events, including an investigation at the Pasedena Playhouse and a trip to La Purisima Mission in Lompoc, visit his Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Richard-Senate/97318001797?fref=ts or his website at
http://www.ghost-stalker.com Until next time, L.A., Happy Haunting! ~Traci Otake, Los Angeles Paranormal Examiner