Cops and Courts

Human remains found on Grafton Road thought to be 29-year-old transgender woman

Detectives with the Monongalia County Sheriff’s Department announced Monday that a body discovered on Grafton Road near Boy Scout Camp Road is officially being investigated as a hit and run after authorities found evidence on the scene leading them to believe the deceased was hit by a vehicle.

Law enforcement is now looking for anyone who may have witnessed a vehicle hit something along that stretch of roadway, and are asking the public to report any incidents of a vehicle sustaining front end damage in the area of Circle K on Grafton Road.

The sheriff’s department is unable to confirm the name of the victim until the State Medical Examiner’s Office releases the person’s identity.

The Dominion Post spoke with Renee Gemma, who said she is a close friend of the victim, and confirmed the decedent to be a 29-year-old transgender woman whose chosen name is Kimmy Kayann Rose.

Renee, who is also a transgender woman, said she and Kim have known one another for a long time and while they didn’t live a perfect life, had formed a sisterhood-type bond through their transition.

“She loved to draw – she was always drawing flowers and stuff like that – she was pretty good at it,” Renee said.  “She loved her coffee and liked to sit in the backyard listening to music.   

“She loved doing her makeup – was really good at doing hair and makeup. She always used to pride herself on being a glamazon,” Renee recalled.  “All around she was just a cool-natured person – I miss her.”

Renee said both she and Kim had to walk along Grafton Road often because “let’s face it, not everyone can afford a car.”

She said there have been many times before, walking both together and alone, when they were almost hit, and has often seen people “veer off to the side they are walking on and sometimes cross that white line to hit us.”

As life goes sometimes, the two friends had not spoken much over the past month, Renee said, so she isn’t sure when or why Kim may have been on the road when she was struck. But she hopes the sheriff’s department will be able to find some answers.

Renee said she knew something had happened when a deputy came to her work, because it was originally thought Kim’s body might have been her.

Detectives with the sheriff’s department are asking anyone who may have seen someone hit something with their vehicle or know of a vehicle that recently sustained front end damage on Grafton Road at any time over the past two weeks to call them at 304-284-7454.

The sheriff said they are not releasing or confirming any additional information at this time as their investigation into the incident continues and they await results from the medical examiner’s office.

“I just wish people would be more kind,” Renee said. “Living as a transgender woman is especially hard for us – we go through so many struggles on a day to day.  We face judgment all the time in social settings and I just wish a lot of that would stop – just have a heart.”