Halloween, Real Life Horror

A Father’s Dying Wish: To Become Part of His Home Halloween Display

It’s Father’s Day and as I was browsing some of my backed up emails on haunts and Halloween I came across an interesting story about an Illinois man who passed away earlier this week and had a unique dying wish, to become part of the family haunted attraction that he had helped run for nearly 20 years.

For 17 years during Halloween, Michael Podlin and his wife TammySue Margalit, turned their home into Scary’s Forrest Frights, a spooky outdoor display that incorporated hundreds of lights, detailed decorations, animatronic creatures, creepy music and sound effects. According to the Daily Herald the entire experience took about six weeks and upwards of 1,000 hours to create, an experience that had gained the family some notoriety in the town of Arlington Heights.

On Monday, Podlin died of pancreatic cancer at his home at the age of 55.  His final request? To somehow become part of the family’s Halloween display.   “If it were up to him, his bones or his casket would be right out there live,” she told NBC 5 Chicago. “It’s a little illegal, so I’m not going to do that.”  His wife is now trying to determine how to best grant his dying wish, with one option being to have his ashes sealed in a custom skull urn that would be placed in a window during Halloween.  One way Podlin will be remembered at the haunt will be through a custom gravestone he was able to complete before he died.  The epitaph on the gravestone reads “Cancer sucks” and was written by Podlin.  Margalit told NBC 5 that the gravestone will definitely be a part of this year’s display.

Along with Margalit, Podlin is survived by two daughters — Sabrina, 16, and Ginger, 14 — and a son, Sam, who turned 17 on Halloween.

More via the Daily Herald and NBC 5 Chicago

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