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  • WPXI Pittsburgh

    Channel 11 speaks to grandparents of missing Uniontown teen after unidentified remains found

    By Cara Sapida,


    Brenda and Billy Kopocko have been putting up flyers across Uniontown, searching for their teenage granddaughter whom they raised.

    Kaitlyn Whoolery, 17, went for a walk on Nov. 23 near the high school and disappeared. She hasn’t been on social media or contacted friends or family since that day.

    “I took her everywhere. I was essentially her father. I just wanted to give her a chance to have a life; unfortunately, it was cut way too short,” said Billy Kopocko.

    Kaitlyn had a rough year and was staying in a group home where her grandparents say she was doing extremely well.

    “She was so proud. I was sending her a card and letter at least once or twice a week telling her how proud I was, how hopeful she was making all this progress... she went missing and it hit me like a ton of bricks,” said Billy.

    On Tuesday, investigators got a tip from someone in jail that there was a body near an abandoned home in North Union Township.

    While police wait for the autopsy, Kaitlin’s grandparents say they’re preparing for the news and beginning to mourn their loss.

    “I was almost certain she wasn’t alive, that just more or less confirmed it. I held out hope. You always hope. I knew when we didn’t hear from her all that time it was just an affirmation of what I thought,” said Billy.

    “It’s really hard. I just wanna know why. Why they didn’t bring her home, why?” Brenda said.

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