1st funeral held for victims of Ohio slayings that killed 8

AP News
Posted: Apr 28, 2016 2:12 PM
1st funeral held for victims of Ohio slayings that killed 8

SOUTH SHORE, Ky. (AP) — A funeral amid extra security was held Thursday in Kentucky for one of eight people shot dead in Ohio in what authorities describe as a cold-blooded massacre targeting a single family.

With law enforcement monitoring the area, loved ones gathered in South Shore, Kentucky, to honor 38-year-old Gary Rhoden at the first of three planned funerals for the victims.

He was buried dressed in full camouflage because he loved hunting. The Crockett L. Reed Funeral Home said the Greenup, Kentucky, man would be buried in South Shore, across the Ohio River from Portsmouth.

Rhoden and seven others from his extended family were found dead April 22 at four properties near Piketon, about 80 miles east of Cincinnati, launching a scramble to determine who killed them and why.

Authorities said none of the deaths appeared self-inflicted and whoever was responsible might be at large. They've received hundreds of tips and are processing dozens of pieces of evidence but haven't discussed possible motives and have announced no arrests, a void of information adding to the family's grief.

"Let the Lord take care of it now," Kenneth Rhoden Sr. said before heading into his son's funeral Thursday, The Chillicothe Gazette reported.

Funeral services for six of the victims are planned for Tuesday at a church in West Portsmouth, Ohio, following visitation on Monday. Those victims are Rhoden's cousins, 40-year-old Christopher Rhoden Sr. and 44-year-old Kenneth Rhoden; Christopher's ex-wife, 37-year-old Dana Rhoden; and their three children, 16-year-old Christopher Rhoden Jr., 19-year-old Hanna Rhoden and 20-year-old Clarence "Frankie" Rhoden.

A separate service is planned Saturday afternoon in Otway, Ohio, for 20-year-old Hannah Gilley, whose 6-month old son with Frankie Rhoden was unharmed.

Two other children, Hanna Rhoden's 4-day-old daughter and Frankie Rhoden's 3-year-old son, also were unharmed.