Tragic Night at the Westerman Museum

sanguine soule stone cover

(excerpt from The Sanguine Soul Stone)

My name is Gilbert Ray Reide. Most people call me Gilbert Ray or Gray for short. I promise you that everything I’m about to tell you is 100% true. It’s almost identical to the story I recited to the police lieutenant about what happened the night of September 21, 1932.

On that night, I know the devil visited Seachester, New York. Nobody can convince me otherwise. This was during a time when Americans who once earned a good living could barely put food on the table. I didn’t have any kids, but it was still a struggle just to help my mother raise my brothers and sisters and keep my own belly full. I worked as a hod carrier for a few hours during the day. By night I served as a night guard at the Westerman Museum on the north side of town.

I was thankful to have a light lifting job at night after lugging around tons of bricks half the day. On this particular night, my partner was out sick. But that wasn’t a big deal because the museum had never had a burglary. It helped that the police substation was just two blocks away. It really was the easiest job in town.

I was doing my second round at about 10:45pm when somebody buzzed the front door. I slowly made my way there, knowing I wouldn’t open it for whoever it was. Looking through the fogged glass, I saw a cop standing outside the second set of double doors. I spoke into the can and asked him what he wanted. He must’ve been new because, at first, he didn’t know where my voice was coming from. It was just a simple can on a cable setup, fed through the walls. The voice came through clear as a bell, though.

He told me he believed somebody might’ve broken in through one of the side windows. I thanked him and told him I would check it out. He suggested that I let him in because somebody had seen at least three men messing with the window. I left him at the door while I went to check things out. He was pretty sore that I wouldn’t let him in. Rules are rules…


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