Urban Legend: Boogeyman

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I can recall my Grandma always telling me “if you do not hurry to bed, the Boogeyman is going to get you!” To my imagination, at the time, he was nothing more than a scary monster living under my bed or in the closet depending on the day. However, this urban legend is anything but a tall-tale. He is a very real man, Hamilton Howard “Albert” Fish, a nightmare to hundreds of parents. To think of what the boogeyman looks like, someone would say “like the movie” or “like that thing from the movie Sinister”; at least that is what I would think. However, no one estimated Fish, a sweet and harmless looking grandfather who would tell you great stories about growing up. This, unfortunately, was the look that was able to keep his greater story under…show more content…
He was born “… Hamilton Fish, but went by Albert, the name of his dead brother” (Casale, 2015). At the time of his birth, Fish’s father was 75 years old and his mother was 32 (Casale, 2015). Fish was born into a family history of mental illness. For himself, Fish was “… diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia”, the chronic condition requiring constant treatment for delusions, “in addition to disordered thinking and behavior, and abnormal interpretations of reality that accompanied it” (McMahan, 2014). Unfortunately, Fish was never given proper treatment for his diagnosed condition. Like most serial killers, Fish too suffered from an inconsiderable amount of abuse and torture at his time while staying in an orphanage. It is unclear as to the reasons why Fish spent his early year in an orphanage (Casale, 2015). Day in and day out, Fish was beaten and whipped to the point of which he began to enjoy the damage. At the age of nine, Fish’s mother returned to his “rescue” and took him back home. Unfortunately, Fish was anywhere from being rescued as the abuse was…show more content…
On arrival, Fish immediately began his list off confessions to the police. On January 16th, 1936, at Sing Sing Prison in Ossining, New York, Fish was executed by electrocution after being convicted and sentence to death (Casale, 2015). Unfortunately, this was much too late for all the children he victimized. Serial killers are of great interest to me simply on the fact that I wonder what exactly motivates a person to take the life of another human. For each killer, they all have uniquely different stories, so my personal goal was to find someone I have never heard with an “off the wall” story. As I came across the name of Albert Fish and briefly skimmed material it was without a doubt horrific to imagine. It was incredibly disturbing to me to discover in reading, not only were his targets children, but that fact that he mailed each victim’s parent(s) a letter detailing their murder. For many years the boogeyman may have been some tall-tale story haunting the lives of children as they lay wide away in bed at night in fear of shutting his or her eyes. When in reality, Hamilton Howard “Albert” Fish was a living nightmare literally feasting on the soles of innocent
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