Ridgeland woman killed by tree limb remembered

By Michelle Paynter - bio | email

RIDGELAND, SC (WTOC) - A freak accident in Ridgeland leaves a family in mourning.

Officials said that occurred storm Monday afternoon is to blame for the tragic death of 63-year-old Rita Rogers. A tree limb fell on her and she died a short time later.

Rogers' family is trying to remember the good times. On Wednesday they were looking at pictures on the computer and flipping through old photo albums.

Rogers was a mother of three daughters. She has three grandchildren and was always very close with her cousin Cheryle Sue Malphrus.

"She was a great person," Malphrus said. "She is going to be missed by everybody, most especially by the girls. But they are going to be fine, she left them quite a legacy."

Rogers's death came as quite a shock. Jasper County coroner Martin Sauls said a tree limb in the back yard crushed her chest.

"It was pretty tragic," Malphrus said. "But it could have [been] tragic had she really been hurt and laid up in a bed for 20 years, that's what I would have called tragic."

So many people in the community knew Rogers, she lived in Ridgeland all her life and loved the outdoors.

"Rita was out there. Rita could make friends with anybody," Malphrus said. "She didn't back up from anything. She always said what she thought was right and gave her opinion. She was very strong."

Now her family is trying to stay strong, as they are still trying to come to grips with this tragedy.

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