Missing Ellis County man found dead in area of Kansas wildfire

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Derrick Scott Kelley (Photo provided by Ellis County Sheriff’s Office)

UPDATE: Derrick Scott Kelly’s fiancee tells KSN that his body has been found in Ellis County. His SUV was burned in the wildfire and his body was found a short distance away.


ELLIS COUNTY, Kan. (KSNW) — Authorities are looking for a Kansas man who hasn’t been seen since Wednesday afternoon, during the worst of the windstorm and the start of the wildfires.

The Ellis County Sheriff’s Office says Derrick Scott Kelley, 36, was reported missing by his fiancee after he did not show up for work.

Authorities say he was last seen around 11th and Ash Street in Hays around 3:30 p.m. Wednesday. He was heading to an address in Natoma and was planning to travel country roads.

That is right in the middle of what became the “Four County Fire” that burned across nearly 400,000 acres Wednesday afternoon into Thursday.

The sheriff’s office says Kelley is considered at risk due to the dangerous weather conditions accompanied by the large grass fires and smoke happening when he was traveling.

Kelley is 5’9″ and 220 pounds. He was last seen wearing jeans and work shoes and driving a 2004 blue Dodge Durango with a Kansas license plate.

If you have any information on the case, call the Ellis County Sheriff’s Office at 785-625-1040.

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