She was the talk of the town Thursday, but she’s not talking.
A black woman dressed completely in black and carrying black bags was walking east on U.S. Route 50 early Thursday afternoon just west of Hillsboro. But when she was asked why she was walking and where she was going she did not answer, did not acknowledge that she was being spoken to, and just kept looking at the ground immediately in front her and walking with her hands folded under her chin.
What appears to be the same woman has been sighted and photographed in Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia the past couple months, according to numerous online reports.
But because she refuses to speak, or gives curious answers when she sometimes does talk, exactly who she is remains a mystery.
Hillsboro Police Chief Todd Whited said Thursday that he heard about the woman and looked her up online. He said that unless she caused some type of problem, the police department would not bother her.
The Times-Gazette spotted her around noon Thursday near Ohio Valley Truss a couple miles west of Hillsboro. At least three other people were stopped in the company’s driveway, hoping the woman might say something. But they left disappointed.
Sarah Puckett of Midland said she saw the “Woman In Black” around midnight Wednesday at a gas station in Fayetteville. Puckett said the woman had a blanket wrapped around her.
Others said there were pictures of the woman sleeping upright on a bench Wednesday night in Fayetteville.
April Haggard, a Hillsboro resident who was riding with Puckett, said they were both curious, “just because everyone has a point of view. Some people think she’s a terrorist.”
Puckett said, “I’m 20 years old and I’ve never seen anything like this in my whole life. I think she doing a Biblical prayer walk, trying to bless the United States.”
“But I think if she’s doing a Biblical walk she should tell us,” Haggard added.
Another woman who stopped in the Ohio Valley Truss parking lot said the “Woman In Black” had stopped at the S&K Dairy Cup in Hoagland. She said woman got something to drink and was smoking.
The Herald-News in Dayton, Tenn. reported in June that what appears to be the same woman had been spotted at numerous locations in Tennessee. The newspaper reported that sheriff’s deputies in Sullivan County, Tenn. stopped the woman after receiving reports of a suspicious person.
“According to reports, the woman told deputies that her name was Elizabeth Poles of Motts, Ala., and that she was on a ‘Bible mission’ and needed a ride to Winchester, Va. … Those same reports state that Sullivan County deputies drove the woman to the Virginia border and dropped her off so she could continue on to Winchester, Va. After being dropped off in Virginia, the woman appeared three days later in Dayton, (Tenn.) — 184 miles southwest of Sullivan County,” the Herald-News reported.
Other reports say the woman has said she’s from an Islamic nation and once worked for the Pentagon.
It’s an intriguing mystery.
Some comments on social media have referenced Hebrews 13:2 from the Bible which reads: “Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it.”