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Hundreds remember slain mom Kelly Morris

More than 600 people gathered for a memorial service Saturday in Granville County for a Stem woman who had been the subject of a year-long search.

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BUTNER, N.C. — More than 600 people gathered for a memorial service Saturday for Kelly Morris, a Stem mother whose skeletal remains were discovered earlier this month.

"This is a time we take and set aside today to remember Kelly and it's a time for us to say goodbye," the Rev. Keith Williams said during the service at Bible Baptist Church in Butner. "As hard as this is, we can find in this service the beginning of a process of letting go and closure for the family and for the friends."

Morris, 28, had been missing for more than 14 months after she failed to show up for work on Sept. 4, 2008. The same day, the house she shared with her family caught fire and her car, purse and cell phone were found in a neighborhood about a mile from her home.

Her husband, William Scott Morris, 35, was arrested Nov. 17 on charges of first-degree murder and setting fire to the couple's home{{/a}}.

"We come to weep. We come to feel one another's pain, and we wonder in anguish about what has taken place," Williams said. "We do not come with easy answers about all the questions we have. This is tough. We are stunned. We are heartbroken, and we simply don't understand the why's and how's of all that has happened to us and to this precious family."

Family members held a receiving line and greeted mourners for about an hour as a photo montage set to music played on a screen.

"Kelly was always a happy person, and all of those pictures showed the smile that she had," friend Elizabeth Dean said after the service. "She had a beautiful smile, and she just always knew how to make us all laugh."

The family has established a fund for Morris' two daughters. Checks, with "Fund for Kelly's Kids" in the note line, may be mailed to Edwards Jones Investments, P.O. Box 806, Creedmoor, N.C. 27522.

Authorities have not indicated a motive for the slaying or how they linked Scott Morris to the crime. According to court documents, family members and friends told investigators the couple was having marital problems and had talked about divorce, before Kelly Morris disappeared.

Search warrants for Scott Morris’ e-mail and bank accounts indicate inconsistencies between his account and those of others regarding his actions in the hours after he says he last saw his wife.

Kelly Morris' family and friends, as well as hundreds of volunteers from as far away as Texas searched relentlessly for her in the months following her disappearance.

"This is just one more page in the book," her father, Pat Currin said last week about his daughter's discovery. "It's some relief. We're glad to have found Kelly. At least we got some closure with that."

Several of Kelly Morris' friends said Saturday they are planning a vigil for next Saturday near the site where her remains were found. Details, however, were not final.


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