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Mysterious 'Woman in Black' said to be an Army vet

Jul. 31, 2014 - 02:26PM   |  
The so-called 'Woman in Black' is seen in Hillsboro, Ohio.
The so-called 'Woman in Black' is seen in Hillsboro, Ohio. (Courtesy of Brice Cooper)
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Some of the mystery of the traveling woman in black has been solved. Police say she intends to stay in Winchester, Va., and is from the area.

The woman wearing black, identified by family as Elizabeth Poles, was embraced this week by about 50 people in Winchester who came to see her. Officers were called to the scene, police said.

The Winchester Police Department released a statement Wednesday, asking for people to "please respect the privacy of the 'Woman in Black.'"

"For her safety and the safety of others, officers took her to an undisclosed location and provided her with food and shelter," the police statement said.

She's become a social-media phenomenon over the last two months. A Facebook page dedicated to her more than 500-mile trek was created this month, asking the question, "Where is the mysterious woman in black?"

She had been spotted in Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, Ohio, West Virginia and Virginia, according to the social media page, which has 65,080 likes.

On July 29 the group posted on Facebook, "I know we are all concerned for Elizabeth and excited to see her make her way to her original destination. PLEASE, I'M BEGGING YOU, respect her during this time. Please don't follow her, wait for her, try to question her, or anything to stress her. She has had a very long journey."

Raymond Poles told Reuters this week that he was the woman's brother and said she was an. Army veteran, mother of two children and widow. She had been getting treatment at Veterans Affairs hospitals, the brother said, according to Reuters.

The woman was identified as Elizabeth Poles, 56, of Motts, Ala., in June, according to News 5 WCYB.

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