We Tried To Show Tyler Rich a Photo of a Ghost, But Guess What Happened

We were not expecting our interview to end this way

By kncitom on October 25, 2023
Tyler Rich performing at KNCI’s Country in the Park, 2019

Tyler Rich loves Halloween the way Garth Brooks loves putting out box sets. Which is why we wanted to catch up with him before his big Halloween Bash at Ace of Spades Saturday Night (10/28).  We had a scary movie quiz lined up for him, and we wanted to ask if he’s ever had any spooky experiences of his own (which he did). But little did we know, he- and us- were all about to have our own spooky experience together. But more on that in a minute.

We asked Tyler if, growing up in Yuba City, there were any places he and his friends liked to go to get scared. Tyler pointed out that Yuba City’s twin town, Marysville, was named after Mary Donner, of the infamous Donner Party. 

“Right over the bridge is the cemetery where Mary Donner…she is buried there.” He told us. “So..when we were in high school we used to go there, and think that was spooky.”


“…Until we found out about the legend of the witches graveyard at the Sutter Buttes”

The Sutter Buttes, for those who don’t know, are a small cluster of rocky hills near Yuba City/Marysville. They’re actually listed as the “smallest mountain range in the world”. For real. But I digress. The Buttes are also mostly privately owned and have been for well over a hundred years. Public access there is very restricted.

Tyler said he and his buddies took to the then-early version of the internet to find out more about this graveyard and its accompanying legend that they weren’t sure was even real. 

“Back in the day, a century ago” as Tyler explained the story, “this lady was a witch, and used to kill kids, and families and blah blah blah, and ‘you’ll find her graveyard where she is also buried‘. And so, you know, we’re 16, so that was our mission: find the Witches Graveyard.”

And a mission it was. Tyler tells that, after searching for a year, they actually, finally, found it.

“And it was extremely spooky- especially all the signs that say ‘private property you will be shot’.” 

Despite the sign, Tyler said, they kept going back, “For over a year and a half”, bringing other friends, girls, whoever wanted to go.

So did anything weird ever happen?

“Oh yeah. We have tapes of orbs like, around different graves.” He said they would see disembodied figures, and glowing red eyes.  It was scary enough, Tyler said, that they would leave notes for their moms that said where they were going and “…’if I’m not back by this time, send help. I love you.’ But, we made it back. Every time!”

The interview with Tyler was great- he also talked about exploring an abandoned underground missile silo left over from the Cold War that was located near the Witches Graveyard, and he did quite well on a scary movie quiz. Of course he hinted at what to expect at his Halloween show Saturday night (dress up. Duh)

But maybe the most interesting part of the interview happened after our camera was turned off. 

As we were saying goodbye, we told Tyler about a photo that one of us has on their cell phone, that was shared with us from a famous country singer. The photo is from just a few years ago, taken from the stage during a rehearsal in an empty Ryman Auditorium in Nashville. The Mother Church. The Grand Ol’ Opry. 

As much as I’d like to, we cannot divulge many details of the photo, since it was shared to us with a promise to never share it on social media. The person who took it was so startled by it, they didn’t want it to be exploited, because they believe it is a genuine image of a ghost. 

So I have to keep it vague but, I think I can tell you this: the photo is an otherwise unremarkable image of a performer who was a mainstay at the Opry for decades. As mentioned, he was rehearsing for a show that night. A few days after it was taken, this elderly performer passed away. Now, back in the 1950s, this man was best friends with another country artist, a legend who passed away at just 27 years old. The photographer swears that day, during rehearsal, there was nobody else in the auditorium. All the seats were empty. Yet when he saw the photo later, there was, in the background what appears to be a man, in a custom white suit- the kind which the legendary-artist-who-died-too-young was known to wear. The figure also had on a distinctive white cowboy hat, also a regular part of the legendary artist’s attire. It is sitting by itself in a row of seats near the back of the theater and is so distinctive, there is no way the photographer wouldn’t have noticed it in the moment. And then, if you zoom in on the image, you will see that beneath the hat…? There is no head or face, just something that appears to be a gray wisp of cloud, or smoke.

I’m not making this up.

The photographer said he thinks it’s the spirit of that legendary artist, nearby because he knew his lifelong friend wasn’t much longer for this world. He was there to escort him home. It’s a very personal, intimate moment, and it’s totally understandable why the photographer wouldn’t want it shared on a mass scale. It could become a joke, or an object of derision or ridicule. And so we keep it to ourselves, only showing it occasionally, to people we know will react to it respectfully, even if there may be some skepticism mixed in.

Given his love of all things spooky, and the fact he is a genuine fan of country music history, we knew Tyler would be someone who would appreciate the photo. That’s why we wanted to show him. But when we tried…?

Well, first the video connection glitched. Keep in mind, there hadn’t been a single technical issue in the previous 16 minutes. Not one. So, we tried again. And the video shut off completely. By then, we were starting to freak out a little ourselves, but we got the connection back and tried for a 3rd time to show him. But, just we were putting the phone with the image up to the camera, the video froze, and this time, it did not unfreeze. At that point, we decided something larger than all of us was telling us something, so we put the phone away and, rather nervously, told Tyler goodbye. Later, he texted us.

“That was crazy! Happy Halloween everyone hahahaha!”

It’s seriously one of the freakier things that’s ever happened to us, but that it happened with Tyler, at this time of year…? Kind of cool, too.




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