The remains of Kay Grayson, known for feeding wild bears, were found in the woods

By Dana Rose Falcone
Updated January 31, 2015 02:20 PM
Credit: Wolfgang Kaehler/LightRocket/Getty

A North Carolina woman known for caring for bears may have been killed by the animals she loved.

Wildlife activist Kay Grayson, 67, enjoyed feeding bears out of her hand and taking care of animals near her Tyrrell County home. Her remains were found last week in woods near her home, Sheriff Darryll Liverman confirms to PEOPLE.

“I am 100% certain that it was bears that drove her into the woods,” Liverman says.

Bloodhounds assisted in finding the remains along a known bear path, and torn clothing led authorities to believe that bears dragged Grayson into the woods. Liverman says strands of Grayson s hair were the first thing found on the scene.

However, there has never been an unprovoked black bear attack in North Carolina, according to the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission.

Grayson lived in a trailer with no electricity or running water off of U.S. Highway 64, approximately 12 miles east of Columbia, N.C. She named the property “Bearsong.”

Grayson inherited the land from a wealthy man who she traveled with on a yacht in the 1980s, reports the Pilot Online. Whenever she needed money, the bear lover would sell a piece of her 1,000 acres.

Liverman, who knew Grayson for the 30-plus years she lived in Tyrrell Country, adds that she once worked as a Las Vegas showgirl.

Grayson s remains are currently with state’s medial examiner in Greenville. An autopsy took place on Jan. 28, but results are not yet available.