Our Stories

Date of Award

Spring 2020

Document Type




First Reader

Professor Jennifer Burkett Pittman

Second Reader

Dr. Benjamin Utter

Third Reader

Dr. Doug Reed


My first memory of feeling absolute and utter horror stems from my father. You have to understand, my father is a large man who, in the right light, is terrifying to a small child. This first memory is from a few days before Halloween. My parents had just bought some of those colored, spooky bulbs (they may have been purple or orange or red, in truth, I cannot remember) and were trying them out in the living room. I simply remember coming down the hallway—I may have been four or five, we definitely still had the dark, 70s style paneling in our house, so I was young—turning the corner, and seeing my dad standing there underneath this eerie bulb, in full Michael Meyers character: the white William Shatner mask, the navy jumpsuit, the motionless stance and stare. I freaked out at the sight of that, and I ran to one of the two bedrooms in the house and hid in the closet behind all of the clothes. Any time after that, if I saw my dad in a Halloween costume or saw a scary movie, I would flee and hide in a closet or hide behind the couch, depending on how intensely I felt about the object of my terror.



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