Wednesday, July 30, 2014

‘Mysterious Woman in Black’ is a U.S. Army veteran

Woman in black passes through Hillsboro

Good Day World!

PTSD manifests itself in many, often disturbing, ways.

People who suffer from PTSD are often angry and they lash out at the world.

But not always.

Sometimes, like in the case of the “Mysterious Woman in Black” they suffer silently and find themselves on “missions” others don’t understand. Like the character Forrest Gump, she’s walking through states and picking up followers.

She has been dubbed the "Woman in Black," by TV stations, police and followers on the Web, including those on a Facebook page where she has been tracked on a nearly 500-mile journey with a black bag and walking stick in hand that has taken her from Ranger, Georgia, to Athens, Ohio, since July 18.

Raymond Poles told Reuters he is the woman's brother, identifying her as Elizabeth Poles, 56, a U.S. Army veteran, mother of two children and a widow from Motts, Alabama. Elizabeth Poles had been receiving treatment at Veterans Affairs hospitals to deal with the deaths of her husband in 2008 and her father in 2009, he said.

Her brother said she was doing better, but suddenly took a turn for the worst in early July, and began disappearing for days at a time. Then one day she was gone.

Her pilgrimage was soon noticed by curious passer-byes, who would stop and ask if she needed help. She politely turned them down according to reports. At other times, she wouldn’t speak at all. She just kept walking.

While there are no people walking behind her, like in the Forrest Gump movie, she is being followed by thousands of people across the country. Most don’t know her story.

As someone who suffers from PTSD (combat Vietnam veteran), my heart goes out to her. I hope she finds what she’s looking for…which no doubt would be peace.

Time for me to walk on down the road…



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