Paranormal News provided by Medium Bonnie Vent > An insane place to renew wedding vows

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8 Jul 2012


An insane place to renew wedding vows


Posted Jul 07, 2012 @ 08:52 PM
Last update Jul 07, 2012 @ 10:47 PM

Many would probably look to renew their wedding vows in a holy place, but there is nothing holy-looking about the building once known as the Illinois Asylum for the Incurable Insane, the abandoned Peoria State Hospital in Bartonville.

Rob Conover of Pekin does not fall into the "most people" category.

"When I said I wanted to do this, and she suggested the (State Hospital), I couldn't believe it," Conover said of his wife of 25 years, Alesia Conover. "I couldn't get her into that building if I wanted to."

That building was just a few feet behind the couple Saturday as they renewed their vows on a porch attached to the north side of the hulking, and some say haunted, structure.

Rich Weiss, the developer currently trying to reopen the building for haunted tours, was among the crowd of dozens of friends and family members who gathered in the only not-scary thing offered by the building: shade.

The building is known to Weiss and Rob Conover, friends and fellow lovers of the supernatural, as the Bowen. Weiss said he hopes to have asbestos removal begin this summer, with a tentative opening of October for tours of the building.

"I chose it because Rich Weiss and Rob have such a love for the Bowen, I knew it would make him happy," Alesia said. "It just seemed apropos."

Rob Conover, a paranormal investigator (don't call him a ghost hunter), has 823 "cases" under his belt, not including his pro-bono work at the State Hospital.

"I'm like everyone else," he said after the short ceremony. "I snuck in here when I was 17. The only difference is I keep coming back."

Alesia, who has been fighting carcinoid cancer since December of 2010, will have no part in her husband's afterlife adventures.

"I just sit at home and listen to the stories," she said. "I'm chicken."

Rob says he discovered his ability - to speak to and hear spirits - following an accident in which he watched a machine slowly rip off his right pinky finger. After leaving the Marines, he became a private investigator, experienced the accident that took the digit and switched over to paranormal investigations.

"When I was a P.I., I didn't believe any of this," he said.

Alesia is content to continue her fight against cancer, and her marriage to Rob.

"They told us 25 years ago that we were crazy and here we are," she said, flashing a beaming smile toward Rob under the ominous gaze of the State Hospital.

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