DENVER – On a hot summer day one year ago, investigators gathered members of the press outside the La Plata County Sheriff's Department to share the news: Some remains of Dylan Redwine had been found on a mountain in Vallecito.
Having covered Dylan Redwine's disappearance from the beginning, I had been tipped off in advance about what was going to be discussed at the news conference. Yet, even with the warning, hearing those words come from La Plata County Sheriff's Spokesman Den Bender's mouth, left a pit not just in my stomach – but in the stomachs of every other reporter in attendance.
Many of us had spent months getting to know the residents of Bayfield and Vallecito. To us, they weren't strangers – they had become friends and family.
Personally, I had gotten to know Dylan's mother Elaine, her husband Mike and Dylan's brother Cory on a different level. As a reporter, it's a rarity to get a chance to get to know the subjects you're profiling – especially while covering a tragedy.
However, in the months that followed I got to know Elaine, Cory, Mike and a bunch of others just as much as they got to know me. Simply put, they're wonderful people.
By now many of you know the back story of Dylan's disappearance. The 13-year-old had disappeared from his father's home in Vallecito in November 2012. He was visiting his father, Mark, for Thanksgiving break.
In the months that followed, investigators searched every little nook and cranny of Vallecito they could; unfortunately, winter had set in, and snow covered most of the area.
It took until the summer for a search team to track down some of Dylan's remains. All in all, detectives found about three percent of the boy.
On that June day one year ago, the La Plata County Sheriff's Department reiterated that Dylan had been murdered. This wasn't a runaway case or an accident, the boy had been murdered – and whoever murdered him was still on the loose.
To this day, detectives have not named a suspect. Yet, they still continue to investigate the case on a daily basis.
In fact, the La Plata County Sheriff's Department told me on Monday investigators were back out on Middle Mountain last week (the mountain where Dylan's remains were found) searching for any new clues. They figured new vegetation pushing through the area might reveal some more details.
The Sheriff's Department said seven or eight investigators had worked on the case that week, and on a day-to-day basis, there are about two or three investigators following up on the case.
Since it's an open investigation, the Sheriff's Department couldn't release too many details – especially about a suspect. Instead spokesman Dan Bender said the following:
"The investigation is still open it's still active. Investigators are still going out into the field and are still doing follow-ups ... The progress of the investigation and the work with the District Attorney's Office – when it's believed they have enough information to move the case forward, they will do so."
At this point, it's a wait and see situation. For many, including Dylan's mother, it's a never-ending nightmare. On Facebook Sunday night, she shared the following with Dylan's followers: http://on.fb.me/1qETsFY.
In the meantime, Dylan's family and friends continue to pray for justice while Dylan's killer is still on the loose.
(KUSA-TV © 2014 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)