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little watermelon Monday 03 July 2006

'the Suscon Screamer' (local suburban myth)

'The Scream' by Edvard Munch
If you live in Northeastern Pennsylvania, specifically - anywhere near Pittston, for long enough, you'll eventually hear the ghost story of "The Suscon Screamer".
Now that prom season is over, I won't be spoiling too much fun by letting out the boring truth, and putting the word out that other states don't have a monopoly on this ghost story.

This this enduring urban legend is just a locally tweaked version of the well-known tale of "The Vanishing Hitchhiker".
I recall seeing various versions of this on Night Gallery or Tales from the Dark Side type television shows, including one that was pretty much an exact duplicate of the one "The Suscon Screamer" story I'd heard.

It's a widespread ghost story all over the United States, (if not the world), the origin of which is unclear.
Urban Legends Reference Pages: Horrors (The Vanishing Hitchhiker)
A man turns to bid his unusual hitchhiker goodbye and discovers that she has disappeared from the car. He later learns that his mysterious passenger had died several years earlier.

Vanishing hitchhiker - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The vanishing hitchhiker (or phantom hitchhiker) is a reported phenomenon in which people travelling by vehicle meet with or are accompanied by a hitchhiker who subsequently vanishes without explanation, often from a moving vehicle. Vanishing hitchhikers have been reported for centuries and the story is found across the world, in many variants.

It is interesting to note that this legend has made it into many regional folklores. In Hawaii, for example, the hitchhiker is often said to be the goddess Pele. It has already been mentioned that La Llorona has also been connected with the story. In the Chicago area, the vanishing hitchhiker takes the form of Resurrection Mary.

I found references to the prom version, attributed to 4 states including West Virginia, New Jersey, Arkansas, and Mississippi. And this is just what I found in a quick internet search.
West Virginia's True Ghost Stories
City: Huntington
At the bottom of fifth street hill a couple was in a wreck on prom night. The girl can be seen standing near the bridge in her prom dress as if waiting for a ride. - The Ghosts of Arkansas
Imagine, a young girl on the way to the prom gets killed in a horrible car accident. I think every place has their own version of this urban legend and I think every town swears theirs is really true. The same is true for Arkansas. This ghost sighting takes us to highway 365 just north of Little Rock. Ask anyone who lives around this area and they will swear that they know the hitchhiker is real.

The Zappa Award for Incredibly Strange Ghost Stories
New Jersey - Totowa (Passaic County) - Annie's Road (Totowa Road)
The stories vary, but most involve her prom night: one version says she was decapitated in an accident afterward, one says she got drunk after her date stood her up and was walking along there when she was hit by a carload of her drunken classmates, and yet another says she was waiting for her date along the road when a truck driver nailed her. Either way, Annie's dead now. Said to be buried along this road, Annie has been known to make appearances. Described as "short" and dressed in white, her fleeting image has been spotted near the I 80 overpass and all along the road. Some say she appears at 2 AM, and you should drive down the road with your headlights off to see her.

Haunted Places in Mississippi
Hattiesburg - Burnt Bridge - The legend has it that on the old bridge there would be a young girl in a prom dress ride across the bridge on the hood of your car around midnight. Seems she and her boyfriend were killed on prom night on that bridge.

Sorry if this puts a damper on anyone's storytelling around the campfire this summer.

posted by Chloe | Monday 03 July 2006 6:20 PM



I've never heard the prom version of the Suscon Screamer.
I was told that on Appletree Road you might see a girl in a prom dress on the side of the road and you had to pick her up or you would crash when you reached the end or something like that. If you picked her up and got to the end of the road she just disappeared. I can't remember where Appletree Road is but I've been there and I've never seen the girl.There was a run-in with a billowing tree but I won't get into that, bad memories.
The Suscon Screamer I was told is a creature. The way I heard it was that if you go to the bridge near Suscon Road and honk your horn you will hear a scream. I don't know if there's a special hour that this has to be done. Anyway the scream is supposedly from a half wolf half pig creature. Kind of like a dog's body with a pig's head.
You know, like a pig-dog!

Posted by Heather | Tuesday 04 July 2006 11:08PM



I never heard of the pig-dog! Haha!
Has anyone else heard of the pig-dog??

And I've never heard anything about Appletree Road. I don't even know where any Appletree Roads are. But I guess there's probably an Appletree Road in at least 25% of the towns in Pennsylvania, since there's plenty of apple trees in this region. But that might be the point of using an "Appletree Road" as the location... because you can tell the ghost story just about anywhere around here.

I've heard several versions of "The Suscon Screamer". But the most prevalent one I heard back in the 1970s was that a girl died on prom night, and if you drive down Suscon Road with your headlights off and/or the oldies station on the radio, she'll be there in her prom dress and ask for a ride, and when you pick her up, she'll disappear after you leave Suscon Road. I've heard versions that it has to be on prom night, of course.

In the stories I've seen on "Night Gallery" type shows, the person actually takes her home to the address she says, and the parents come to the door and tell the person who picked her up that she's been dead for years, and that people come to bring her home like that every year on prom night.

But I always wondered why "Screamer"? So I think the squealing pig-dog creature story seems more in line with "Suscon Screamer".

PIG-DOG indeed! Hawaii has their Pele... Northeastern Pennsylvania has "The PIG-DOG"!

Posted by
Chloe | Tuesday 04 July 2006 11:24PM


I found this:

Then he heard another hunter in a tree stand start screaming. The hunter jumped out of the tree and started running. The hunter observed the creature with his 10 power binoculars, and described him as "Being about 6 ft. long with a long snout. It weighed about 200 pounds and was gray in color. It had webbed feet with long claws and had a huge head". The hunter refused to take the Game Commissioner back to the site, because he was too scared. The man also said "The ground was clawed up as if 100 turkeys had gone through�. He told the officer it wasn�t a bear or a coyote, it was a "Monster".

I notice the reference to a snout. I'm not sure how the webbed feet figure into a pig-dog creature. But it's a start in confirming this pig-dog-like creature story.
(Mind you, not that I thought Heather was making it all up herself.)

Posted by Chloe | Wednesday 05 July 2006 11:13PM


Apple Tree Road in in Harding off of 92. Harding is across the river from Pittston.
Posted by Maria | Friday 10 August 2007 7:27PM


i heard that up on suscon road by the golf course you park there shut your lights off and then turn he car off then beep three times then get out and you will hear a scream or you will see her
Posted by aj | Tuesday 14 August 2007 5:48PM


I've heard the "pig-dog story" and I've heard two others
My mom told me that a Bride and groom got into a car acciendent on their wedding night and deid on suscon road an if you drive down there you might see the bride screaming.
The other i heard from a friend saying that a man was walking his dog an the dog was run over and you can still hear the man screaming

Posted by Rhian | Sunday 19 August 2007 9:04PM


there are many diff versions of the story. my cousin lives on suscon road act and ive been there so many times,me and my frineds have even videotaped the area at night for fun. one story is that the suscon screamer is a creature who lives there, usually described as having webbed feet and a long snout and that the sceam is the sound that it makes. many hunters have claimed to have seen it and it was even in the papers before. my parents friends have claimed to have heard a strange screaming noise while hunting in that area but have never actually seen anything. the creature is often seen near the hunting range entrance, but ive never seen it when ive been there. another story is that it was a girl who hung herself from a bridge not far from there. theres one bridge that you drive over that makes a weird sound which i guess could be the reason for the screaming sound but youre supposed to stop on the bridge and honk ur horn three times and youre supposed to see the ghost and/or here the girl scream. another thing that ive heard youre supposed ta do is to turn youre car and lights off while parks on the bridge and youre also supposed ta hear her scream or see her.but ive never heard or seen either. and even another one ive heard is that you stop before the bridge, open your car door, let her spirit in,cross the bridge, open ur door and let her out. and the last myth about the suscon screamer was that it was a lion that escaped from the circus. even though i go up there a lot im still afraid that one day ill see something peering out from the trees on the side of the road or seeings something crossing the street lol.
Posted by linz | Monday 08 October 2007 12:47AM


i've heard that on some girls prom night her date took her to suscon road raped and killed her and from that day on if you go on that road you might hear screaming and you might see her walking on the side of the road ... from personal experience ive been on that road and i have heard screaming and it sounded kinda close to the car too cause i heard it over music.
Posted by alicia | Sunday 04 November 2007 11:18PM


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