Photo: Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images
Lorraine Warren, a renowned paranormal investigator and custodian of what’s arguably the world’s most famous haunted doll, has died at age 92. On Friday, Lorraine’s son-in-law, Tony Spera, posted an announcement to the Facebook page for the New England Society for Psychic Research, which Lorraine and her late husband Ed Warren founded in 1952. “She died peacefully in her sleep at home” on Thursday night, Spera said.
Most readers will likely know Warren’s name from 2013’s The Conjuring, a horror movie that’s based on allegedly real events (and allegedly leaves out some fairly damning information about Ed, who died in 2006). It follows a family who, grappling with demonic possession after moving into a creepy old house, calls in the Warrens to exorcise their home. It also introduces us to Annabelle the haunted doll, the cursed antagonist of her own spinoff franchise, and an actual resident of the Warren Occult Museum at the couple’s Connecticut home.
Lorraine — a self-identified medium who claimed clairvoyant powers — and Ed, a demonologist, authored some ten books on the paranormal. For decades, they traveled the world investigating supernatural phenomena. In 1976, for example, the Warrens investigated the Amityville Horror hauntings at Long Island’s spookiest residence, inspiring another string of famous films. “It was a very bad place,” Lorraine once recalled of the experience to Entertainment Weekly. “I remember when I was there, and Ed said he was pushed to the floor as if a heavy blanket was pushed over him.” Some of the couples’ other notable cases include an alleged British werewolf and violent demonic activity at a mortuary-turned-family home, as seen in 2009’s The Haunting in Connecticut.
Lorraine worked as a consultant on The Conjuring, in which she makes a brief appearance, according to The Wrap. She also befriended the actress who plays her, Vera Farmiga. On Friday, Farmiga tweeted that Lorraine had “touched [her] life.”
“From a deep feeling of sorrow, a deep feeling of gratitude emerges,” Farmiga said. “I was so blessed to have known her and am honored to portray her. She lived her life in grace and cheerfulness.”