Rainier woman's body found along rural Columbia County road

Death investigation on Neer City Road - Columbia County Sheriff's Office photo.

RAINIER, Ore. – A woman was found dead Wednesday along a rural Oregon road, the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office said.

Reports came in shortly after noon from someone who said she found the body of a female on the side of Neer City Road near the Nick Thomas Road intersection.

Initial reports state the deceased had no visible injuries, but authorities say they are not ruling anything out at this point.

"There's a litany of reasons why she could have been there," Columbia County Sheriff Brian Pixley said. "Anything from a traffic crash, to she stopped, and had a heart attack on the side of the road."

Authorities say the woman was identified as a Rainier, Oregon resident. They are withholding her name until family members have been notified.

For area residents, this investigation is unnerving.

"I don't really know what to think," Dena Nordstrom said. "It's a little scary. I won't be letting the girls out very far until we find out."

Pixley said a state trooper flew a drone and used special equipment to map and diagram the scene.

Neer City Road was reopened around 6 p.m., nearly six hours after the initial discovery.

Investigators from the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office, St. Helens Police Department, Scappoose Police Department, and Oregon State Police were at the scene to investigate the death.

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