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Missing woman's boyfriend baffled by disappearance - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Missing woman's boyfriend baffled by disappearance

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WEST RUTLAND, Vt. -

Maryann Foster, 59, vanished more than two weeks ago, and the Proctor woman's boyfriend says he is heartbroken.

Tom Witham says he has been through a lot in his life-- a car accident that left him in a coma and a battle with cancer. Now, he says the disappearance of his girlfriend, is another difficult event, and one that has him baffled.

"All I do is hope and pray she's not suffering, you know," Tom Witham said.

Witham says the days since Feb. 24 have been unbelievable. That's the night he says his girlfriend of 16 years, Maryann Foster, went missing after they ate a meal she cooked-- ham steak, scalloped potatoes and beets-- at her Proctor home.

"We ate, she did the dishes, I cleared the table, we watched the news," Witham said.

He never thought she would be the subject of the news reports they watched together. But, he went home that night, he says she didn't return multiple phone calls over the evening and next day.

"I said I gotta go over there and see what's going on," he said.

Witham, who lives in West Rutland, went back to her home.

"I knew something was wrong when I walked in the living room and saw her cigarettes, her pocketbook and the coat she usually wears was hanging up," he said.

After searching the house and talking to neighbors, Witham called 911 and reported her missing. Multiple agencies began an intense search for Foster, including knocking door to door and a dive team search in Otter Creek near her Meadow Street home.

"I'm always wondering where she is, asking where are you?" Witham said.

Officials say they have ruled out Witham as a suspect and he says he ignores any suggestion that he could be involved.

"I've never heard that," Witham said. "People have told me that, that online, Facebook, whatever, people who don't know me make comments."

Although he refers to Foster in the past tense...

"She was easygoing," he said.

He says he believes she is still alive.

"She's... I think she's out there," Witham said.

But not knowing is painful.

"I'm always thinking of it," he said. "Some nights you just lay there... toss and turn."

We asked him if he could talk to the woman he has been in love with for 16 years, what would he tell her?

"Where are you? Where can I kiss you? I'll pick you up. You know, I'll bring you back home," Witham said.

Witham says he has been cooperating with officials and believes they are doing all they can to look for Foster.

Officials tell us the search continues with another foot search going door to door looking for any clues to where Foster might be.

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