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Idaho Hunter Discovers the Remains of Another Hunter Who Went Missing 53 Years Ago

·2-min read
bow hunting
bow hunting

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A hunter in Idaho made an unexpected discovery on Friday when they found the remains of another hunter who had gone missing more than 50 years ago.

Raymond Jones disappeared at 39 years old in 1968 while he was bow hunting for mountain goats in the east fork of Hayden Creek in Lemhi County, according to a newspaper clipping from the time that was republished by the East Idaho News.

He was last seen on Sept. 7, 1968.

The Lemhi County Sheriff's Office received a call on Sept. 17 that another hunter had stumbled upon a body in the same area Jones had disappeared in, Sheriff Steven Penner told the East Idaho News. The remains were recovered on Sept. 18, just over 53 years after Jones went missing.

"The hunter was seeking a shortcut from one hunting area to another when he found human remains and then contacted the sheriff's office," Penner said. "Due to the lack of remaining daylight and ruggedness of the terrain, recovery efforts began on the morning of the 18."

By some twist of fate, the sheriff's department recovered part of Jones' wallet, which still contained an intact ID that allowed them to immediately identify him, NBC News reported.

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According to the old newspaper clipping, the search for Jones was initially abandoned a few days after he disappeared, but was reopened when authorities found footprints in an area that had not been previously searched.

However, the case was abandoned again a short time later, the East Idaho News writes.

"It's a real rocky, cliffy area, and we are not really sure what happened," Penner told NBC News on Wednesday. "He was in goat country, and that can be pretty perilous."

Jones' wife is still alive, and the sheriff's department has contacted his family, authorities told the East Idaho News. If he were still alive, Jones would be 92.

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"It's pretty wild, ain't it?" Penner told the newspaper. "You have another bowhunter looking for a shortcut who stumbled upon a bowhunter from 53 years ago."

The Lemhi County Sheriff's Office did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.

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