BANNOCK COUNTY — Law enforcement agencies have confirmed the identity of remains found earlier this year in Bannock County, according to a news release from the Bannock County Sheriff’s Office.
The Sheriff’s Office, Bannock County Coroner’s Office and Idaho State Police Forensic Services say the remains are those of Michael Winward.
Winward, 86, had been missing since Oct. 2, 2022.
Searchers with The Banncock County Sheriff’s Office found partial skeletal remains on May 5, according to the news release.
“The remains were found on a property adjacent to Winward’s, which is located on Treaty Highway north of Fort Hall,” officials said.
A driver’s license and credit cards belonging to Winward were found with the remains.
The remains were sent to the Idaho State Police Forensic Lab for testing. DNA testing matched Winward’s profile with very high certainty.
“This was not the outcome we hoped for when Michael went missing. We know this news will be painful for all who loved Michael, but we are thankful his family has answers now,” Bannock County Sheriff Tony Manu said.
Manu also expressed his gratitude to the community for their help and support in the search for Winward.
As with all unattended deaths, an autopsy is being conducted, but foul play isn’t suspected.