Elizabeth Jean Acton

Acton, circa 1994; Willow Cherry, circa 2018

  • Missing Since 08/24/1994
  • Missing From Colonial Beach, Virginia
  • Classification Endangered Missing
  • Sex Female
  • Race White
  • Age 41 years old
  • Height and Weight 5'0, 125 pounds
  • Distinguishing Characteristics Caucasian female. Blonde hair, blue eyes. Acton's nickname is Betsy. She may use the last name Bryant. She has a scar on her abdomen.

Details of Disappearance

Acton was last seen at the Days Inn on Colonial Avenue in Colonial Beach, Virginia on August 24, 1994. She has never been heard from again. Blood was later found in her hotel room, but her boyfriend, Willow Bruce Cherry, said it was menstrual blood. Acton's car was found elsewhere after her disappearance.

Curiously, Cherry was arrested for an unrelated homicide in September 2018, and the body of the victim in that case has not been found. He has been charged with first-degree murder in the presumed death of his brother-in-law, Peter Lian, who disappeared in February 2018.

A photo of Cherry is posted with this case summary. He has not been named as a suspect in any other cases, but Acton's co-workers stated she was afraid for her life and told them that if anything happened to her, the police should look at Cherry.

She worked as a nursing educator at Central Baptist Hospital at the time of her disappearance. Her disappearance remains unsolved.

Investigating Agency

  • Westmoreland County Sheriff's Office 804-493-8066

Source Information

Updated 4 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated May 15, 2019; distinguishing characteristics updated.