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N. Idaho remains found in 1984 identified as Oklahoma man

Posted at 10:42 AM, Apr 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-14 11:42:14-04

GRANGEVILLE, Idaho — Skeletal remains found in 1984 have been positively identified as an Oklahoma man who went missing in 1982 in his mid-20s, officials in northern Idaho said.

The Idaho County Sheriff’s Office on Monday said DNA testing with potential family members found through a genealogy database led authorities to identify the remains of Roger Brian Bennett.

“It’s very satisfying (to make the identification) because different investigators have been working on this for 37-plus years,” Lieutenant Jerry Johnson of the Idaho County Sheriff’s Office told The Lewiston Tribune.

Idaho authorities investigated an abandoned camp near Powell Ranger Station in 1983. Hunters in the fall of 1984 found skeletal remains about a mile from the campsite.

No cause of death has been determined. But authorities say violence was likely involved because one lens from a pair of prescription eyeglasses was found at the camp and the other lens with the remains.

A private lab did genetic testing on the remains in January and came up with possible relatives, the mother now in her 90s and a sister, in Oklahoma. They submitted DNA samples to confirm the relationship.

The remains of Bennett, who served in the U.S. Air Force, are being returned to the family. A memorial is planned.

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