NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - Metro Police identified a woman found dead Sunday morning off Pennington Bend Road near Opryland.

Police said the victim was 44-year-old Pamela Paz, of Smyrna, who was strangled to death.

Kendall Smith, Paz’s 18-year-old daughter, said the family is going through a lot right now.

Paz was a single mother and leaves behind four children. Smith said her two young sons, ages 10 and 11, were home alone last week for days wondering when their mother would return.

“I just had a feeling I needed to drive over here,” said Angela Heath, Paz’s best friend since they were 5.

On Tuesday, Heath said she wanted closure and came to Pennington Bend Road, the place Paz’s body was found.

“Right now I feel like I’m in a movie,” said Heath. “I feel like I’m in a horror film or something. It doesn’t feel like real life right now.”

“I think I’m in such a state of shock that I’m almost number,” said Smith.

Smith said she got a call from Metro Police on Sunday morning saying her mom was missing. That evening she said people sent her news articles of an unidentified woman found near Opryland.

“And I was like ‘That’s my mom. There’s no way that isn’t,'” said Smith. “There’s no one else that has those tattoos.”

On Monday Metro Police determined the missing woman was Paz, the woman in Smith’s life she would call with her news, good or bad.

“When I’m super excited about something she is the first person that I think of to tell,” said Smith. “She was just a wonderful woman that was so selfless and cared so much about everybody.”

“My dad passed away when I was 14 and Pam was there,” said Heath. “So, I have to be here for her and her kids.”

Metro Police said they are pursuing active leads in the case. Anyone with information on who murdered Paz should contact Crime Stoppers at 615-742-7463.

Smith said the family is planning a funeral.


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