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The New Mexico Office of the Medical Investigator has confirmed through DNA testing that the remains of a White Rock man recovered near a “remote mesa” on San Ildefonso tribal lands are indeed that of Michael Cannon, who went out for a bike ride on some trails around the White Rock area June 25, 2011 and did not return.
According to NM OMI Director of Operations Amy Boule, two hikers discovered the remains last July.
“It was a positive confirmation by DNA,” Boule said.
According to a press release from the Los Alamos Police Department, hikers found the remains July 29, 2013. The department worked with the Bureau of Indian Affairs’ special agents from the Northern Pueblo Agency and the OMI to process the scene.
The LAPD was notified April 17 of this year that the DNA was a match.
The cause of death is so far undetermined.
When he went missing in 2011, family, friends, and volunteers from the community searched for him well into August of that year. The search efforts apparently went to great lengths to find him, as at one point it also involved a specially-equipped Blackhawk helicopter that was given permission to fly in the restricted air space over the Los Alamos Laboratory and surrounding property in an effort to locate him.
In early September 2011, the Cannon family held a memorial service and called it a “Day of Remembrance” where friends and family recounted their thoughts and memories of Cannon, which were later collected and bound into a book for the family.
The Cannon family, which includes his wife Joani, daughter Rebecca and sons Reed, Thomas, and Matthew could not be reached for comment at this time.
Cannon was 66 when he disappeared.
He was retired from the Los Alamos National Laboratory where he worked as an engineer.
Cannon was also known for his service to his community and his church. He often tutored math for individuals seeking their GEDs, helped with community building projects and served on missions for his church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
In the LAPD’s press release, Reed and his wife Heidi released the following statement:
“The Cannon family would like to thank the community, friends, and their church family for their love, compassion, and support.
The family would also like to ask the community for privacy and thoughtfulness at this tender time. Thank you”