Never let the truth get in the way of a good ghost story, or a good urban legend, as this tale out of Fairhaven proves.

One of the most persistent SouthCoast legends is the story of the ghostly old woman who will change your radio dial when you drive through a certain point on Main Street in Fairhaven.

The interesting thing about this legend, though, is that there seems to be at least some truth to it.

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As the story goes, the elderly woman was a resident of Nichols House, a nursing home on Main Street that is still there today, although now it is known as The Royal at Fairhaven. She loved to sit in the front parlor of the nursing home each afternoon and tune in the radio to her favorite classic musical station.

However, there was supposedly an orderly at the nursing home that didn’t get along with the woman, and whenever she would sit down to listen to her music, he would change the dial to his favorite rock station, just to annoy her.

Well, one day, she had enough. She got up out of her chair, and ran through the front door of the nursing home and into the street – where struck and killed by a passing car.

As the legend goes, if you drive past The Royal with your car radio tuned to the orderly’s rock station, 102.9 FM, the signal will cut out completely and be replaced by loud, booming classical music as you drive past the nursing home. It’s the woman’s ghost, manipulating your radio from the Other Side, making sure nobody replaces her classical music with rock and roll ever again.

Now, there doesn’t seem to be any record of an elderly woman being struck and killed outside the nursing home, at least nothing that was reported. More likely than not, the story was made up. Perhaps it’s a true story that just happened somewhere else and has been attributed to Fairhaven – because there is some truth to the legend of the rock station cutting out and the classical music replacing it, at least there was up until 2009.

The 102.9 FM dial setting is Cape Cod rock station WPXC, and for 55 years, Boston classical station WCRB broadcast on the 102.5 frequency. For some reason, that one little stretch of Main Street in Fairhaven was the spot where those signals would mix and one would bleed into the other. Not coincidentally, stories of the old woman changing the music on your car radio to classical music seemed to stop right around the time that WCRB moved down the dial in 2009.

Now, 102.5 is a country music station out of Boston, and you will still occasionally get some crossed signals between that station and the Cape rock station – but nobody is blaming that on a ghostly old woman.

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