Mom says woman found after 11 years is doing OK

Mom says woman found after 11 years is doing OK

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — The mother of a woman who surfaced 11 years after disappearing and leaving behind her young children says her daughter is doing OK but “had a real traumatic time.”

Jean Copenhaver, of Brenham, Texas, spoke to The Associated Press today about her 54-year-old daughter, Brenda Heist.

Copenhaver says she’s spoken with Heist several times since Friday, when her daughter turned herself in to police in Florida and was identified as a missing person.

Copenhaver says Heist plans to live with her, but for now she’s staying with a brother in northern Florida.

Heist told police she made a spur-of-the-moment decision in 2002 to join a group of homeless hitchhikers on their way to Florida, walking out on her 8-year-old daughter and a 12-year-old son.

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