!A Runaway’s body identified in Florida
By Janice Gregorson
Post-Bulletin, Rochester MN
Remains found in a Florida field 14 years ago have been identified as those of a missing Stewartville woman.
Heather Ann Schmoll was 17 when she took her dad’s car in the summer of 1993 and ran away.
Her disappearance was not reported until last year, when Schmoll’s sister called Olmsted County authorities asking if they would investigate the disappearance. Olmsted County opened the missing person investigation April 3, 2007.
Detective Lee Rossman said all investigators knew was that Schmoll had lived in Stewartville for a short time from 1992 to 1993 and left the area with an unknown boyfriend in 1993, when she was 17. A few months after leaving Stewartville, she contacted her family and said she was living in Daytona Beach, Fla.
The investigation led to Flagler County, north of Daytona Beach, where woman’s body was found in 1994. DNA from the body was compared to Schmoll’s.
Rossman said that took several months. He said the Flagler County Medical Examiner’s Office identified the remains as Schmoll’s on Thursday.
The cause of death will be listed as undetermined because of decomposition, with drug overdose as a contributing factor, Rossman said.
The Schmoll family, in a written statement, said Heather has been missed every day she’s been gone and will continue to be missed.
"We pray she may now rest in peace knowing she is back with her family that loves her and that we may now begin the healing process."