Kentucky woman's body found burned in South Carolina ditch

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WYMT) - One Kentucky family has a lot of questions after their daughter was found dead several states away.

A woman's badly burned body was found on September 20 in Chester County, South Carolina.

She was positively identified as Melissa Whitis Wednesday.

Whitis' family says her life took her in many different directions.

"She called from different areas...she left a message saying she was in Virginia. Pennsylvania," said Kathryn Farris, Whitis' stepmother.

Nothing could ever prepare her family for the phone call they got on Wednesday.

"Are you sitting down? I said yes, He said Melissa is gone. Found her in a South Carolina ditch," said Larry Farris, Whitis' stepfather.

The Farris' say they saw Melissa about a month ago before she went back to Somerset. They say they do not know why she was in South Carolina.

"She was my stepdaughter. She was a good person. Last year or so a troubled life," said Kathryn.

The cause of death has not been released and the family does not know of any suspects or persons of interest.

"She didn't deserve this. Nobody deserves this to die like this. We will find out who did this and they will pay," said Larry.

Whitis was married with two children of her own. Her funeral arrangements are being handled by Southern Oaks Funeral Home in Somerset.