Human remains found in a remote area of the Saline County side of the Ouachita National Forest have been identified as a Union County man reported missing for about 5 years.
The family of Daniel Bruce Eakin â€” would who be 59-years-old today â€” has been notified and no foul play is suspected at this time, according to the Saline County Sheriff's Office. Eakin was reported missing on July 17, 2007 from El Dorado. According to the North American Missing Person's Network, www.nampn.org, Eakin told his sister that he was going camping in the Ouachita National Forest and left in his 1991 Ford Ranger truck. On July 17, 2007, the sister reportedly found a letter from Eakin in which he told his family goodbye and instructed the sister what to do with his belongings. Eakins truck was later found on Fire Road 132 in Perry County. The website also said that Eakin previously made comments to family about taking his own life.
Reportedly a note was also found in the truck urging family "not to look for him."
On Dec. 15, 2011, human remains were found in the National Forest off Arkansas Highway 9 in Paron on Dec. 15. Det. Ron Parsons said the area was "very remote" and there was also remains of a campsite along with the human remains discovered.
Parsons said no weapon was found in the area, but they found a backpack with the remains of a tent, clothing and ammunition. He said the area where the remains were found "had flooded several times" since 2007 and that most of the items had likely "washed away."
After the discover on Dec. 15, 2011, the Sheriff's Office sent the human remains to the Arkansas State Crime Lab for DNA processing to make identification. Parsons told The Saline Courier on Monday that the remains were identified as Eakin, but waited until the family was notified before releasing the information to the public.
To report information in regards to this case, or any other crime, call the Saline County Sheriff's Office Criminal Investigation Division at 501-303-5608 or the main office at 501-303-5609.