|The Haunting in Connecticut (2009)
Starring Virginia Madsen, Kyle Gallner, Martin Donovan, Elias Koteas
based on the real life experiences of the Snedeker family
October 22, 1986
Birthplace: West Chester, Pennsylvania, USA
Born: August 29, 1973
Birthplace: Marietta, Georgia, USA
Death: January 9, 2012, Johnson City, Tennessee, USA (cancer)
September 11, 1961
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, USA
||Carmen Reed (aka Carmen Snedeker)
Born: September 5, 1955
Birthplace: Biloxi, Mississippi, USA
August 19, 1957
Birthplace: Reseda, California, USA
I didn’t believe in ghosts. I believed in the spirit world but I didn’t believe that it could interact with our world. -Carmen Snedeker (A Haunting in Connecticut, 2002)
Questioning the Story:
Did the eldest son have cancer?
Southington home the Snedeker
family rented from 1986-1988.
Yes. The real life Matt Campbell, Philip Snedeker, had a cancer of the immune system called Hodgkin’s lymphoma. -TheCabinet.com
Did they move to be near a hospital?
Yes. The Haunting in Connecticut true story reveals that the real life family, the Snedekers, moved on June 30, 1986 from Upstate New York to 208 Meriden Avenue in Southington, Connecticut to be near UCONN hospital for their son's Cobalt treatments. -'A Haunting in Connecticut' Discovery Channel Documentary
Was the house really a funeral home?
Yes. Darrell Kern, the former owner of the Southington home, confirmed that prior to purchasing the property in the 1980’s, it had served as the Hallahan Funeral Home for multiple decades. -Hartford Courant
Did the mom really not know that the house was formerly a funeral home?
It depends on who you ask. Mrs. Carmen Snedeker (the real Mrs. Sara Campbell) claims, as depicted in the movie, that she was never informed the house had been used as a funeral home. Carmen said that she had not been in the basement due to renovation materials blocking the stairway, and only found the embalming equipment after they moved in. However, the former owner and their in-house neighbor, claim the family was fully informed of the situation prior to it being rented. -A Haunting in Connecticut
(Back) Allen, Tammy, Ed and Lorraine Warren
(Front) Bradley, Carmen, Allen Jr., Jennifer
Did the mop water turn bloody red?
Watch the Discovery
inspired the movie.
Yes. According to the real mother herself, Carmen Reed, then Carmen Snedeker, “The mop water was blood red. I mean a deep, deep red. It made my skin crawl. I started getting nervous that I was ruining the floor.” -A Haunting in Connecticut
Did the dishes put themselves away?
Yes. While the movie depicts this occurrence happening to the eldest son, Philip Snedeker, the Discovery Channel documentary reveals that it actually happened to the mother. “I thought I was losing my mind," Carmen recalled. "I know I set the table but the dishes weren’t there.” -A Haunting in Connecticut
Did a niece really live with the family?
Yes. According to the real life niece Tammy, “My mother and my father were divorcing. Just didn’t work out too well so my aunt called and invited me to be with them. We were pretty close.” -A Haunting in Connecticut
Did the younger brother really spin around on the gurney?
Yes. “My brother actually had me lay down on the gurney in the morgue and didn’t tell me what it was," recalled Bradley Snedeker. "It did freak me out real bad, but I didn’t want to run because of my older brother. You know, I had to look tough around my older brother. It was pretty creepy, it scared me pretty bad.” -A Haunting in Connecticut
Did the lights flicker without light bulbs?
Yes. According to a the middle son, Bradley Snedeker, “… the lights were coming on and off and on and off even though there was no bulbs in it…” -A Haunting in Connecticut
Did the real Matt Campbell (Kyle Gallner) see things because of treatment side effects?
No. His mother, Carmen Reed, asked his oncologist about the possibility of visual side effects. “He said there was no chance of him having hallucinations or delusions with the medication he was on.” -A Haunting in Connecticut
Did the son really sleep in the basement?
Yes. Philip Snedeker slept in the basement with his brother, Bradley Snedeker. Since the upstairs rooms were smaller, it was the only room that could accommodate the teens. The two brothers slept in the casket display room down the hall from the former embalming room. -CarmenReed.com
Carmen Reed showing the
coffin lift in her basement that
leads up to a trap door in
the master bedroom floor.
How many séances did Jonah conduct in the house?
Zero. Jonah, portrayed in the movie by Erik J. Berg, is a fictional character. The filmmakers added Jonah to the storyline to help provide an explanation for the supernatural elements of the movie.
Did they really find old pictures of dead people?
Yes. In this website's correspondence with the real life mother, Carmen Reed, she stated, "There were a couple of photos in the home, but there were many toe tags and a head tag. There were other personal items of the deceased.”
Did the son really see dead people with writing carved on them?
No, although other sightings were reported. Some of these include a thin man with high cheek bones and long black hair and another with white hair wearing a pinstriped tuxedo. -AssociatedContent.com
Did Matt (Kyle Gallner) have a radical personality change?
Yes. According to his family, he became distant, dark and violent…like meanness had come over him. -A Haunting in Connecticut Discovery Channel Documentary
Did the son meet Reverend Popescu (Elias Koteas) during cancer treatments?
No. Any priests that were met came from the Catholic church, not the hospital.
Did the shower curtain nearly suffocate the niece like in the movie?
Not exactly. In the movie, the shower curtain nearly suffocates the niece, Wendy (Amanda Crew). The Haunting in Connecticut true story reveals that the shower curtain incident did happen, but to the mother, not the niece. In our correspondence with the real life mother, Carmen Reed, she stated, "Yes, the shower curtain did wrap around my face so that I couldn't breathe. My niece had to come and rescue me. I couldn't have fallen as I was being pressed in upon."
Did Matt Campbell attack his cousin Wendy?
Yes. The real life Philip Snedeker did attack his cousin, Tammy (Wendy). An ambulance took him to a mental hospital where he remained for forty-five days. -CNN
Did their father really remove all the light bulbs from the home?
Yes, but not in the drunken manner depicted in the movie. After seeing the high electric bill, the real life father, Allen Snedeker, concluded that this was because of the children sleeping with all the lights on and removed the light bulbs to get control over the situation.
Morgue doors are still visible on the side
of the Southington, Connecticut house.
Did the real life Matt find bodies in the walls of the home?
No. The bodies in the walls were created by Hollywood to explain who was haunting the family and why. Since the bodies had never been properly laid to rest, their souls remained trapped in the home, struggling to get out and find peace.
Did the son really burn the house down?
No, the oldest son, Philip Snedeker, never tried to burn the house down. The filmmakers needed a climactic way to release the demons from the home and created the fire for theatrical purposes. According to the Snedeker family, an exorcism was performed on the house on September 6, 1988, which brought closure to the spirits.
Carmen Reed and her
Did Philip Snedeker survive cancer?
No. During the treatments in Southington, Philip Snedeker's cancer went into remission and had not yet resurfaced at the time of the movie's release. He had been working as a trucker and had four children. Unfortunately, his cancer returned and ultimately claimed his life on August 9, 2012. He is buried in the Wilson Cemetery in Elizabethton, Tennessee.
Is the house still haunted?
No. According to the current owner of the Southington home, Susan Trotta-Smith, the true story is that the house is not haunted now and never was. “We’ve lived in the house for ten years. Our house is wonderful,” Susan said. “This is all Hollywood foolishness. The stories are all ludicrous.” -NBCConnecticut.com
Why do the Snedekers believe the house was haunted?
Do to the disturbances in the household, the Snedeker family brought in paranormal researchers, including John Zaffis, Ed Warren, and Lorraine Warren, to help pinpoint the problems. The researchers believed that former funeral workers were guilty of necrophilia, which led to the evil presence. Carmen later reported that former workers were found guilty of the crime, although we are unable to find documentation regarding this claim. -AssociatedContent.com
How do the paranormal researchers feel about the movie's retelling?
During an interview, Lorraine Warren commented on what she had heard about the movie, "I was also told about scratching on the walls, blood and séances. That isn't the type of things that were occurring within the house at all." (MyRecordJournal.com) Lorraine Warren put it simply when saying, “The movie is very, very loosely based on the actual investigation.”
Lorraine and Ed Warren
Haunting in Connecticut Behind the Movie
Interviews & Video
Watch video featuring interviews with the Snedeker family mother, Carmen Reed, portrayed by Virginia Madsen in the movie. Included in the interviews are her niece Tammy, played by Amanda Crew, and the famous paranormal investigators, Ed and Lorraine Warren, who were called in to work the real life Southington haunting.