The OES visited Schrader Road Tunnel on September 27, 2003 and on April 12, 2014. Located in Ross County just south of Chillicothe, this closed-spandrel arch concrete tunnel was built in 1927 to carry the railroad over Township Road 288 and Lick Run. We are not sure which railroad was responsible for building the bridge, but the tracks are now used by the Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad. The largest span is 41 feet and the total length of the bridge is 81 feet. The mouth on either side of the tunnel that carries the roadway beneath the tracks has a not of chips and dings, likely from oversized vehicles trying to fit through the tunnel over the years. There are a few cracks inside the tunnel as well, but it was structurally sound. It looked like some repair work had been completed, but the tunnel probably hasn’t seen a full restoration since it was built. A modern-looking bridge just south of the tunnel carries Schrader Road over Lick Run just before it dumps into Paint Creek.
Of course, given the tunnel’s somewhat secluded location, Schrader Road Tunnel is reportedly haunted. According to legend, a woman placed her infant on the railroad tracks and her baby was run over by a train and killed. Another version of the legend states a mother was walking along the tracks with her newborn child when a train came barreling toward them. She threw the baby into the creek below in an attempt to save its life, but both the mother and her child were killed. Regardless of the story, the legend states that if you drive through the tunnel at night with your headlights off and windows down, you may hear the cries of the baby and perhaps see the ghost of the mother. This legend is somewhat consistent with the dozens of other crybaby bridges throughout the state. Cold spots and weird feelings have been reported by eyewitnesses and several people have reported seeing strange, glowing red balls of light. Read more about first-hand experiences sent to us on this page.
The ghost of a murdered woman whose body was found inside a waterbed mattress on the banks of Lick Run is also said to haunt the tunnel. We initially thought this was yet another legend, but there be something more to this haunt. While conducting research on Schrader Road Tunnel, we discovered that the body of a young woman, wrapped in a waterbed mattress, was found on the bank of Lick Run on April 12, 1990. The victim was identified as 24-year-old Michelle Huffman of Fostoria, Ohio. To make matters worse, Huffman’s 16-day-old baby was missing. Police eventually arrested four men in connection with Huffman’s murder. All four men claimed to know nothing about the whereabouts of Huffman’s infant son. Eventually, the man who was the baby’s father, Christopher Doyle, admitted to killing both Michelle and their son. The baby’s body was found in Eagle Creek south of Findlay. Three of the men pleaded guilty to their roles in the murder and the other went on trial and was found guilty. All for men served time in prison. Click Here if you would like to read a full synopsis of the Huffman murder.
We visited Schrader Road Tunnel for the first time on the night of September 27, 2003. Several of our members recorded for electronic voice phenomenon (EVP) and we conducted an electromagnetic field (EMF) sweep of the tunnel. No EVPs were obtained, although we did record slightly higher-than-number EMF near the center of the tunnel. The most eventful thing to happen that night is when our car got stuck in the mud and we had to flag down some passersby for help pushing it out. We returned to the tunnel both at day and night on April 12, 2014, the 24 year anniversary of Michelle Huffman’s body being discovered there. This time we attempted to record both EVP and used a P-SB7 Spirit Box, a device that rapidly sweeps through radio frequencies to allow a spirit’s voice to be heard in real-time. Unfortunately, we did not record anything out of the ordinary.
Location Information: Public Roadway
Schrader Road Tunnel is located on Schrader Road, a quarter-mile south of Charleston Pike; Ross County.