The coolest ghoul in school

Cassandra Hays, Editor-in-Chief

Most students have heard the classic story of Lola, the ghost that haunts Kamola Hall.

Rumour has it that Lola was a student at CWU in the 1940s who lived in Kamola Hall, which was then an all-female dorm. Most published accounts say that Lola’s fiancé was drafted into the military and never returned home from WWII. Heartbroken, Lola hung herself from the rafters in the attic while wearing her wedding dress.

Many people are skeptical that Kamola is haunted. But according to some students, Lola is not shy about making her presence known. One student recalled their encounter with the spirit on the CWU subreddit.

“I think I saw her on the first floor once,” the student said. “My first night after moving to Kamola. [I was] laying there trying to sleep when the refrigerator started humming super loud out of nowhere, so I opened my eyes and I saw some wispy smoke go by. I thought the heater or something had caught fire so I jumped up and turned the lights on and saw that everything was normal.”

Other students have echoed these experiences. One student said their friend, a resident of Kamola, saw the elevator open without being called. Another said they think they might have bumped into her in the bathroom. According to the Past and Present website, there have been several reports from students over the years of strange noises, cold gusts of wind and apparitions.

Former CWU photographer Rich Villacres told the Daily Record that he also had a personal encounter with Lola in 2002. He was doing a photoshoot in the Kamola attic, during which a woman was modeling a 1940s wedding dress. Villacres said that two out of the three rolls of film that he used to shoot that day came out completely black. He added that the one roll that did come out had foggy markings on it, and even a ghostly figure in the hallway that they were shooting in. Villacres said the odds of two different rolls of film from two different manufacturers not developing are extremely slim. He also said that the photos he took outside of the building came out completely fine.

Another popular backstory about Lola’s death claims that Lola was a CWU student who’s real name is Lola Wintergrund. According to Wikimapia, she leapt to her death from an upper floor of either Coursan or Muzzall hall, across the street from Kamola. After the halls were demolished in 2007, Lola moved across the street to take permanent residence in Kamola. Skeptics have pointed out that this doesn’t explain how Lola was spotted in Kamola before 2007. 

While tales of Lola are well known across campus, there are still many who don’t believe in Lola’s existence at all. In 2003, The Observer interviewed alumnus Evan Sylvanus, who said that Lola was a character made up in 1982, used to promote a haunted house event in Kamola. Furthermore, nearly every story mentions that Kamola was an all-female dorm when Lola lived there. However, during World War II, the hall was used to house around 400 male U.S Airforce cadets, and didn’t return to being a women’s dorm until after the war had ended. There is also no known record of a CWU student named Lola dying in Kamola during that time period. 

So, the next time you swing by Kamola, give your friend Lola a wave.