We are relocating from WV. Near for us would be around an hour out for a day trip. We are used to traveling an hour+ just to get to a decent grocery store and medical services. We live in an area that is mostly elderly and there are few opportunities or activities for children. Basically, nearly anywhere is probably an improvement and really couldn't be much worse.
Kitty Hawk/Kill Devil Hills is where we would love to be, but realize that depends on finding housing and year round jobs due to the higher cost of living.
I asked in this forum as I would rather hear the good, bad, or ugly from residents rather than researching online and trying to figure out if the information is accurate or just what the writer wants you to hear. I want more than just demographic information, and anyone with reasonable intelligence knows that wiki is not always a reliable and accurate resource.
I don't think you're going to get much first hand knowledge of living in Elizabeth City here. You are going to get the perception from folks who live/vacation on the Outer Banks and pass through EC for business, doctors appointments, etc. I think the reason people are telling you to look at demographic information on EC is because according to census data 28% of the population lives below the poverty level, compared to 8% in Dare county. That might not be significant depending on what part of WV you're from, but it is noticeable if you're comparing the Outer Banks with EC. Since others seem to be hinting at it, I'll go ahead and mention that if you are of Caucasian descent, you are in the minority in Elizabeth City (40%). I expect that's very noticeable to white folks from Dare County, who comprise 92% of the county's population.
EC gets its fair share of ribbing here on the board but I think it's actually a nice town. It has a quaint downtown that's seen various attempts at revitalization along with a waterfront and plenty of beautiful older restored homes. Like many areas with poverty and unemployment, it has its share a drugs, crime and bad neighborhoods. I don't think that's unique to EC. The Coast Guard is a major employer, along with the associated industry supporting the base. You didn't mention what sort of jobs you're looking for, but there is more year-round full-time employment in EC than on the Outer Banks. I will mention that many of the folks who do changeover day house keeping on the Outer Banks come from EC and surrounding areas, mostly for extra income since it's one or two days a week, mostly in the summer.
Like I said, the best way to tell whether it's somewhere you'd like to live is to go for a visit and stay a few days. Visit the schools your kids would be attending, walk some neighborhoods, get a feel for the town and surrounding areas.