Pasadena California is the home of the New Year's Day Rose Parade watched by millions every year on television. It is also home to the Devil's Gate Reservoir Wilderness Area. In this area north of Pasadena sets Jet Propulsion Labs (JPL). The inclusive area is known as the Arroyo Seco.
It is said to be cursed by one of the founders of JPL, Jack Parsons.
Jack Parsons was born John Whiteside Parsons on October 2, 1914. He grew up in Pasadena California in a wealthy environment due to his maternal grandparents who moved to Pasadena from Massachusetts shortly after his mother divorced his father.
Jack was raised as an only child and was very much a loner. He amused himself by reading science fiction literature and and experimenting with explosives in the Arroyo Seco and the back garden of their Orangegrove Avenue Home.
Jack attended California Technical Institute and founded JPL. He was instrumental in the development of solid rocket fuel and jet assisted aircraft in the late 1930s.
He was also interested in the occult and began to study "Thelema" an occult based religion founded by one Aleister Crowley. They believed they could evoke the spirit of Babalon who was closely related the anti-christ.
Jack was involved in many unsavory situations (including the alleged theft of papers from the Late Howard Huges). but was generally seen as a humanitarian to some extent due to his empathy for the common laborer.
While working on some explosives for a movie set in Los Angeles in 1952, Jack blew himself up. He suffered a large hole in the left side of his face and the loss of his left arm and two broken legs. He died hours later at Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena.
Due to his extensive work at the JPL facility in the Arroyo Seco near the Devil's Gate reservoir, The area is said to be haunted or cursed because of the entities that Parsons released in his experiments with Thelemaism.
After his death strange events began to occur in the area. Children began to disappear into thin air while visiting the recreation wilderness surrounding the area.
In 1960 a camp guide was leading a small group of boys, 10 to 11 years old, on a nature walk. One otherwise healthy young lad began to complain of exhaustion and was perspiring profusely. Being only a few yards from the make-shift camp, the guide agreed to let the boy return to camp to rest while he continued the educational walk with the remainder of the boys.
When the bunch returned to the camp, the young lad was nowhere to be found. Eventually authorities were called in to search for the lad and for several days the search continued. The area was searched for hidden wells or caves where the boy might have become lost but none were found and neither was the boy. The guide noted that they were no more than a few yards from the camp when he allowed the boy to return and rest. It was considered highly unlikely the boy had wandered off since he was obviously not feeling well.
Several other disappearances took place in years following this incident and each time a massive search was mounted only to find no trace of the children.
In subsequent years those who have visited the Devil's Gate area have reported sightings of illusive children seen playing and then vanishing into thin air. One man was frightened nearly out of his wits when he saw the apparition of a young girl in a shallow canyon at night.
Did Jack Parsons curse the Arroyo? Were there evil entities unleashed in the area?
Perhaps next time you are in Pasadena, you might want to visit Devil's Gate and investigate for yourself.
Don't expect to see me there though. I shan't be visiting that area any time soon.