A Kentucky man who shot himself in March when authorities showed up on his doorstep was allegedly cashing his dead mother’s Social Security checks for three years while her body was stuffed away in a freezer.
Jon Whiteford had been caring for his mother, 96-year-old Faye Whiteford, when she died of natural causes in 2011. Instead of reporting her death, he put her body in a freezer and continued to live off her Social Security and retirement benefits.
When a Pulaski County Sheriff's deputy arrived on his doorstep March 29 to ask about his mother, Whiteford fatally shot himself in the head.
Faye’s body was found in a freezer in an abandoned home in neighboring Wayne County about a month later.
His friends told Lex18.com that he had financially depended on his mother and never recovered from her death.
"He just got himself into trouble, and once you do something like that, there is really no way out," his friend Al Fried told Lex 18.
Fried said Whiteford care deeply for his elderly mother.
"Jon was basically a good person," he added. "This is probably one of the only things he did wrong in his life."
A welfare check was requested by the Office of the Inspector General after they noticed Faye hadn’t made a medical claim in three years. Around the same time, her son was preparing to apply for his own benefits at the Social Security office, the New York Daily News reported.
"We didn't know she had passed away, and we were afraid to ask," said Fried.
"He wasn't a bad person, it's just that he did one bad thing and from that one bad thing led to other bad things," he added.
Pulaski investigators are still looking for anyone who may have been in contact with Whiteford before he committed suicide.