Bud Steed - Founder and Co-Director
Bud has been actively researching and writing for eight years (at the time of this writing) and has written and published six books, four of which were reviewed and accepted for inclusion into the Library of Congress based on their folklore and historical content. Those four books are the Haunted Natchez Trace, the Haunted Mississippi Gulf Coast, Haunted Baton Rouge, and Haunted Northwest Arkansas. Additionally, Bud has two other books published, each the start of its own series. Ozarks Ghosts and Hauntings is the first book in America’s Ghosts series, and Lost Treasures of the Ozarks is the first book in America’s Lost Treasures series.
A lot of the content within his books is historical as it relates to the particular story or legend; you could say that he’s kind of a self-described “history geek” as it’s his opinion that each ghost story, each legend or strange occurrence, has its roots buried somewhere in historical fact. Researching the history behind the story gives us a better sense of why the legend or ghost sighting started in the first place and allows us to separate the fact from the fiction; hopefully, that will lead us down the twisting turning path to the truth.
Being a naturally inquisitive person (he seems to ask why a lot), Bud tends to look at a story and wonder what happened to bring this particular story to life. What is the “back story” behind the legend or paranormal sighting and what can he do to find it? He will be the first to admit that he doesn’t always succeed at finding the source of the legend but he does have a damn good time trying.
Bud has been researching the paranormal for over thirty-eight years and has investigated in both Europe and the United States. Additionally, Bud has researched and looked into a lot of legends and buried treasure tales over the years and he loves to poke around abandoned home sites with his metal detector; the things that you find aren’t always worth anything, but they do give you an idea of who the people were and what life was like for them, which to someone like him, is worth almost as much as money.
Bud is the founder of Backroads Paranormal, a group dedicated to investigating and researching historical sites, and the co-founder of Infinity Paranormal Research.
Currently, Bud resides in the beautiful Ozark Mountains of Southwest Missouri with his amazingly patient wife Jennifer, four great kids, and two Pitbulls named Dixie and Clyde.
Contact Bud: email@example.com
Dave Harkins - Founder and Co-Director
Originally from Fresno, California, with a fascination with all things Occult and Paranormal David and some friends started up an occult bookstore back in 1980 that is still in operation today.
David states that "During the early years with the shop, folks would stop by and share stories of strange happenings that they believed to be of a paranormal nature. At first, I was genuinely perplexed as to why they would contact us? After getting to know many of these people, I realized that they were genuinely freaked out by the things that they were experiencing and they had nowhere else to turn at the time. You have to take into account that in 1980 there was no internet or paranormal television programming or much to do with the supernatural in the mainstream excepting for the occasional horror movie being broadcast on TV, or in the movie theater. Folks then didn’t feel that they could turn to family or friends, or the clergy, as nobody would believe them and just think that they were crazy, or blame it on Satan. I began investigating these claims of supposed paranormal activity with very tried and tested techniques for the time, and got hooked on the fact some of these claims may really be happening."
With a fascination of all things Occult and Paranormal, Dave decided to take it a step further. After moving from Fresno California back in early 1985 to the Ozark Mountains of south-central Missouri Dave immediately fell in love with not only the mountains themselves but the strange tales that shrouded them in mystery and legend. Tales of lost mines, buried treasure, ghosts, and cryptids were shared with him over the years by Ozarks natives and helped to form his ever-growing interest in researching the truth behind those stories.
Forming several small informal paranormal groups in the 80's and 90's, Dave founded The Ozarks Paranormal Society in 2007 and later on co-founding the group, Infinity Paranormal Research. Dave devotes most of his free time into searching for answers as to whether life really continues after death and to find the truth behind the stories of various Ozarks legends.
According to Dave, “There is always a little bit of truth behind every ghost story or legend. The key is researching the story, finding the historical connections to it and proving that there really was a basis for the origin of the tale. That’s what makes it so interesting and drives me forward.”
His research has led to the authorship of “Haunted Graveyards of the Ozarks” published by the History Press as part of its Haunted America series; that book was later reviewed and accepted for inclusion into the Library of Congress based on its collected folklore and historical content.
In addition to researching and investigating both legends and the unexplained across the United States, Dave has been featured on radio, print and most notably he and the Ozarks Paranormal Society were featured on the Travel Channel show “Legends of the Ozarks” investigating the activity at Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield in Missouri. The show is still aired on a regular basis on The Travel Channel. David is also featured on a current Travel Channel show, "Mysteries of the Outdoors," centered around the mysterious happenings surrounding the Mark Twain National Forest in Missouri.
Dave is also a Team Manager for the world-renowned TAPS Family. TAPS stands for "The Atlantic Paranormal Society". The TAPS group is based out of Rhode Island and has been investigating the paranormal for many years before starting the popular "Ghost Hunters" television show on the SyFy network. Dave has always extended his quest for answers of the existence of the paranormal to many parts of Europe as well as the Indian subcontinent; the quest never stops for Dave Harkins, at least as long as there are answers to be had.
Contact Dave: firstname.lastname@example.org
John Healea - Founder and Co-Director
Contact John: email@example.com