LA PLATA COUNTY, Colo. - The remains of Dylan Redwine have been found.
The 13-year-old boy disappeared in November and since then, hundreds of people have spent thousands of hours looking for any sign of him.
The boy's bones were found during a recent five-day search of Middle Mountain Road, a search in high, rugged terrain made possible because of the spring snow melt, the La Plata County Sheriff's Office said Thursday. The bones were found in a drainage off Middle Mountain Road.
"During the search of Middle Mountain we found a variety of items, including bones, and those were sent to CBI, and they confirmed they were human remains," said Dan Bender, spokesman with the sheriff's office. "DNA testing confirmed they were Dylan."
Earlier in the day, the boy's divorced parents, Elaine and Mark, were called to Durango to meet with authorities. The confirmation of the discovery of the boy's remains was not released until the parents were informed Thursday afternoon.
Investigators spent four days thoroughly combing through the area where the remains were found and said they feel confident they have retrieved all of the remains that were there.
The sheriff's office has not said what other items were found in the search but said they will be treating the case as a criminal matter.
-- See a history of the search for Dylan Redwine in photos: http://ch7ne.ws/11QFGQg
"I cannot wrap my head around it. You can never be prepared for something like this," Mark Redwine told our partners at the Denver Post.
The search of the mountain was part of a series of follow-up searches conducted in the Vallecito area since snows melted this spring, officials said.
Middle Mountain is located north of and within sight of Vallecito Lake. The search area ranged from 8,000 to 11,000 feet in altitude and consists of deep canyons and dense forest.
About 45 personnel from law enforcement and search and rescue worked over 1,600 man hours during the five-day search, which concluded Wednesday afternoon.
Search teams negotiated steep drainages with extensive ground cover as they looked for clues. Sectors were treated as possible crime scenes. At times the searchers were almost shoulder to shoulder as they moved up and down the difficult terrain.
-- Case Timeline --
Nov. 18 - Dylan Redwine flies into Durango-La Plata County airport to spend Thanksgiving with his father
Nov. 19 – Dylan Redwine reported missing
Nov. 20 - Search teams start searching for Dylan
Nov. 24 – Search dogs pick up Dylan’s scent at Vallecito Reservoir
Nov. 25-26 - Dive teams and teams on boats equipped with sonar search Vallecito Reservoir
Nov. 28 – Authorities announce Dylan Redwine did not run away. Asking people who drove from Vallecito to Durango if they had spotted him
Nov. 29 – Authorities execute a search warrant at Mark Redwine’s home
Dec. 2 – Prayer vigil for Redwine at Lewis-Palmer Middle School
Dec. 4 – Both parents take polygraph tests
Dec. 5 – Pictures from a surveillance camera are released, showing Dylan at a Durango Walmart hours before he disappeared
Jan 24 – Reward for Dylan grows to $50,000
Jan 26 – Protestors show up at Vallecito Reservoir saying Mark Redwine needs to be more active in the search for his missing son
Feb. 23 – Cadaver dogs show up on iced-over Vallecito Reservoir
April 24 – Authorities drain part of reservoir and build berm dam to look at area where search dogs got numerous hits
June 25 – Authorities spend several days searching the steep and rugged Middle Mountain Road
-- Case Background --
Dylan arrived at Durango-La Plata County airport on Nov. 18, 2012 and was picked up by his father for a court-ordered Thanksgiving holiday visit. His father said he went to run errands the next day and when he came home, Dylan was gone.
Dylan mother, Elaine Redwine, his brother, Cory Redwine, and Elaine’s fiancé, Mike Hall, stayed in Colorado Springs while Dylan flew to Durango alone.
Investigators confirmed that Dylan arrived at his father’s home at about 8 p.m., after the two stopped at Walmart and McDonald’s in Durango.
Mark Redwine contacted the Bayfield Marshal’s Office on the day of the disappearance to ask if anyone had seen Dylan, then contacted Dylan’s mother to ask if she had heard from the boy. Elaine contacted the La Plata County Sheriff’s Office at about 5:30 p.m. that day and reported that Dylan was missing from his father’s home in Vallecito.
A local postal worker reported that he thought he saw Dylan walking with another boy in Vallecito at about 2 p.m. on the day of his disappearance, according to the sheriff’s office.
Investigators identified the postal worker and the boys, but determined Dylan was not among them and none of the three are connected to the boy's disappearance. Other sightings have been reported in other areas of Colorado, but none have been confirmed, the sheriff’s office said.
In February, with help from the public, investigators identified a man who was seen in Vallecito looking for gas on the day of Dylan’s disappearance. Investigators say the man was in the area on legitimate business, and he has not been connected to the case.
Prior to Dylan's disappearance, his parents hadn't spoken for years. The first time they spoke was in a Feb. 27 appearance on the Dr. Phil talk show.
Elaine asked her ex-husband if he'd hurt the boy. Mark replied he had not.
"I really have a concern that you hurt him and his bones are out there just laying and you don't even care," Elaine Redwine said.
"I've done everything that I know how to do to be involved in every aspect of what's going on to find him," said Mark Redwine.
Weeks after Dylan disappeared, investigators said they determined the teen did not run away, but members of the task force searching for Dylan will not disclose what led them to that conclusion. Investigators would only say they are treating his disappearance as a criminal investigation.
A map of the locations related to the case is below. (Mobile visitors go to: http://ch7ne.ws/1aRQjch)
View Dylan Redwine Case in a larger map