To kick off 2018, and the official launch of Horror Australia, we have today launched our Unexplained Series. The Unexplained Series is a series of news topics based on Australia’s mysterious and unexplained stories, including crimes that captivated the entire nation, and sparked more questions than answers being offered.
The first part of our Unexplained Series is the 1979 Luna Park Ghost Train fire – where seven people perished on the much loved ride, but our focus for this is primarily on Moloch – the God of Child Sacrifice, of whom a photo was taken with one of the victims, Damien Godson, just hours before he tragically met his end.
It was June 9th 1979 when the Godson family was perusing Circular Quay in Sydney, that fateful day they had already explored Taronga Zoo, a much needed family day out for Jenny and John Godson who had spent most of the year saving to spoil their two sons were waiting for a ferry to take them to Luna Park.
Remembering back to that day Jenny Godson recalls that a busker came out of nowhere, seemingly singling her son Damien, walking up to him and putting his arm around him for the photograph to be taken – little did anyone know that the photo would be last to be captured of the young boy.
The busker wearing an unusual outfit, and certainly did not fit into the regular costumes worn by other buskers that day – or since.
The demonic looking figure wore a mask made entirely out of cow skins, with horns atop its skull. Public notations, and research conducted in the years that followed the fire stated that the outfit looked of that which one would relate to Moloch.
Moloch, is the biblical name of a Canaanite God associated with child sacrifice. It is believed that Moloch’ favorite way for sacrifice was the burning of his offerings – as most passages in the bible refer to walking through the fire, such as in Leviticus 18:21 where it states: “And thou shalt not let any of thy seed pass through the fire of Moloch”
It was approximately 10:15pm when thick black smoke began to bellow out of the tunnels of the Ghost Train at Sydney’s Luna Park. Jenny Godson, her husband John and their two boys Craig and Damien had made their way to the Ghost Train as part of their final ride for the day – having just four tickets left.
Jenny later recounted that it was around this time she had a bizarre unrelenting urge for ice-cream and so her husband and her two sons boarded the fateful ride using up three of the families remaining four amusement park ticket rides.
Workers of the ride sounded an alarm and scrambled to evacuate passengers from the train cars as they exited the tunnel, an hour later the ride had nearly been entirely consumed by the firery inferno. It was believed that everyone had escaped.
Firefighters examining the structure after the blaze however made the discover of seven bodies, including the bodies of John, Craig and Damien Godson.
It was determined that all seven passengers had climbed out of their cart in an unsuccessful attempt to find their way out of the blaze. Authorities believe they would have most likely made it out alive had they remained in their cart as it made its way to the exit tunnel – like the other luckier passengers.
Months after the loss of her husband and two sons Jenny Godson, developed photographs taken that day during their family day out and noticed the photograph – the last on the roll of film and the last photograph of Damien.
The photograph shows a shy Damien standing next to the intimidating demonic figure. However, there has been many questions raised around the photograph.
The demonic Moloch figure, who is based on the God of Child sacrifice. seemingly randomly picked a boy out of the busy crowd and insisted on a photograph being taken with him.
Behind the mask no one knows the identity of the man, and despite a nationwide search no one has stepped forward to reveal themselves as the identity of the masked figure.
The hunt for the masked man has now turned cold, and unless Police receive new information the search will remain dormant. Considering all of this the Luna Park Ghost Train disaster will remain one of Australia’s biggest unsolved mysteries.